24 hour non-stop cycling journey

through the high peaks of Gran Canaria

Every adventurous journey I take is made out of certain elements; time, distance, start- and endpoint, route and transport. To make a journey more interesting it’s an idea to play with these elements. For my next journey I play with the element of time. What happens when I cycle for 24 hours, with no real route, distance or pace?

On the 31st of January 2018 the night was lit by a full moon. Perfect for the journey around Gran Canaria. I will cycle for 24 consecutive hours, only stopping to rest or eat a little. With a little help from Pop On Bike I start the journey at 11AM. Every hour has been documented by one picture and 24 words.

A few days earlier a storm hit the Canarian Islands, leaving the highest peaks white from snowfall on this “tropical” island. Heavy rains and winds were blowing in the lower area’s, would it be an idea to postpone the journey? No. As Jimmy Nelson once told: “bad weather makes good pictures”. Here is the story of the 24 hour journey.

Below the pictures are the 24 word sentences.

11 AM: Ready to leave
4 – 5 PM: I feel more relaxed and look forward to the mysterious mountain peaks. What do they speak about? Snow? Rain? Fog? Adventure, that’s for sure.
8 – 9 PM: Rear light just ran out of battery. Catasrophe. Unsafe. More rain, strong winds and climbing. I’m wet but sweaty and hot. Is this fun?
9 – 10 PM: The road is closed. There is snow in the high peaks. Wind is still here but the moon is shining bright through the clouds.
5 – 6 AM: The road leads me deep in the dark abyss. Attacked by hail and rain. Nothing to see but only the feeling of going downwards.
6 – 7 AM: The night feels like a cloudy dream. Clear village lights awake me and send me down to sea level. I’m tired. Waiting for daylight.
9 – 10 AM: Last kilometers to Las Palmas. The adventureflow is gone, now it’s filling up time. The rain makes it a bit more adventurous. Almost there.
11 AM: Back where I started. 24 hours, 147 kilometers and 3197 hight meters in my legs. A fresh beer in my hands and the perspective of a warm bed makes the memory of those cold  windy hours melt like snow.