Biking A Steep And Stony Path

Fit To Ride

Today. My experience with The Conqueror Virtual Challenges: The Inca Trail Virtual Marathon
Tomorrow. Guest post from a traveler who has done Machu Picchu both virtually and IRL.


For exercise and vicarious amusement, I “biked” the 26.2 miles of the Inca Trail. This was my first experience with virtual travel. I would go for a bike ride around my neighborhood. Very isolated, lots of social distance. When I got home, I would log in to the webpage and report my mileage. The site would then tell me where I was on a map. I could convert to streetview for a look at the trail.

Along the way, they awarded icons for finishing a percentage of the route. At the end. I got a digital finisher’s certificate and a hefty metal medal on a neck ribbon.

Day By Day
Started, April 5, 2020.
Finished, April 9, 2020.
Mileage by day. 10-8-5-8
Daily record. [Biking Virtually, Inca Trail]

Pet Peeve
People who say Machu Picchu was “discovered” in 1911 by Henry Bingham. People knew about it all along. Just not the right people. Mffph. The popularization of Machu Piccu, sure. But let’s use the right words.

“Bingham, of course, was not the first person to discover Machu Picchu. Peruvian farmers in the region had long known about and visited the mountaintop ruins. ”

Thank you.

“But he was likely the first to make a photographic record of the site. ”

Okay, legit claim.

National Geographic: These Stunning Pictures Revealed Machu Picchu to the World. Got this glimpse, then would’ve had to sign up to read more.

Awareness of Outside World
GVI: How to ethically hike Machu Picchu. I can’t speak to the backstory of the website owner beyond what they say about themselves. At least they raise good questions. Minimal surfing will turn up abundant commentary on the various issues: worker rights, animal welfare, sustainability, etc.

From The Bookshelf – Internet
Most blog posts about the Inca Trail were along the lines of Steep! Magical! I’m a travel blogger! Aren’t I clever! This one is was more approachable: Practical Wanderlust, Hiking Machu Picchu: Failure on The Inca Trail

My Google fu could not drag up an official Inca Trail site, a la US National Parks. Everything turned out to be a tour company. Please point me toward what I missed.

From The Bookshelf – Books
The Falling Woman
by Pat Murphy (Tor 1986)
Came up in Google search. Got all excited before I realized it was about Mexico rather than Peru. Read it anyway. Also recommend her book There and Back Again, a SF retelling of The Hobbit.

Warning. Not sure how to give alerts without spoilers, but I’ll give it a go. There are uncomfortable parts to the book. They are hinted at in the beginning. If you have triggers, proceed with caution. You are good to go with the Hobbit book.

Previous Posts
Intro [Virtual Bling]
Widget announcement post [Come Away With Me, Virtually]
Team invitation post [Ride Away With Me, Virtually] Join us!
Other virtual trips [Biking Virtually, New Zealand], [Biking Virtually, Route 66]

Stay safe. Stay sane.
Katherine Walcott

2 thoughts on “Biking A Steep And Stony Path

  1. That’s like saying Columbus ‘discovered’ America. Cartoon I saw some years ago, “When Columbus discovered America, the Indians were waiting on the shore to greet him.”

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