Approximately 78 kilometers.  

Sand day. Oh, sand day. How do we love you, sand day? In various ways and to varying degrees. Riding a mountain bike through eight inch deep sand is either something you love, or hate. A few of our riders had experience in sand, but many of us were practicing the many techniques our amazing guide Henk suggested for us as we struggled through rocky roads, deep sandy patches and the baking African sun. After a few days of thick cottony clouds (something Bike Zambia had never seen before) we finally had our trademark blue sky and almost zero shade. It was hard. It was hot. But when we arrived in Kalomo we were tired, sore and proud. The difficulty level was high, but so were our spirits. Having the world’s cutest greeter at our rest stops definitely eased the pain.

We celebrated the 4th of July by covering ourselves in temporary tattoos, stickers, red and blue mustaches and sparkly tiaras (When we weren’t wearing helmets. Nobody rides without a helmet. Helmets are sexy.).

Taking time to remember this very American holiday was comforting, even though we were far from home. At the end of the day our hosts surprised us with a fireworks display that the town of Kalomo will no doubt we talking about until next year when we do it again.