It was a very cold night as well as a wet one and I slept badly, a sleeping bag inside the tent would have been warmer. We had plenty of time to kill before our 14:00 minibus departure so we ate the sandwiches we’d not needed yesterday and had tea and cake in the café. As we rode to the Bella Vista campsite, a young Israeli cyclist ran up, asking if we had a spare spoke. I was about to give him one of mine when he explained he had 28 inch wheels rather than the standard touring size of 26. On a whim, he’d bought an old bike in Villa O’Higgins to ride the carretera and had suffered numerous punctures, his brakes had failed and were useless, and now he had broken spokes. His best option would be to abandon the bike and take a bus.
The minibus was full and we only just managed to squeeze everything in after removing my front wheel. The driver was well acquainted with the road and a fast drive got us to Villa Cerro Castillo by 16:30 where we said goodbye to Marcus and Rachel. Eliana’s cabaña was available and she greeted us like long lost friends with a hug. We spent the evening catching up on her fast internet connection, trying to find information on our onward journey.