Wow – tomorrow is the last day of our journey.  Wow.  After saying we were biking to Ushuaia for so many years, it’s almost surreal that tomorrow we’ll actually do it.

I’ve been feeling invincible these past few days – nothing could stop me now.  But last night as I writhed in pain, I wasn’t so sure.

“I’m concerned about my knee,” I told John this morning.  “When I fell on the gravel road in Chile last week I tweaked it, and it’s been bothering me ever since.  But now it’s getting really bad.  I’m concerned.”

“You only have 104 kilometers to go,” he responded.  “Think you can make it?”

I’ll make it all right.  Even if I blow out my knee completely, I’ll reach that finish line tomorrow.

I’ve never mentioned this in my blog before, but I’ve got two bum knees (along with a bad hip, a screwed up back, and a thyroid gland that has gone kaput).  Six years ago the doctor said, “If I didn’t know it was absolutely impossible to mix them up, I would swear I was looking at the MRI of a 75-year-old woman.”  I was 44 at the time.

Biking has kept me going and the rhythmic motion has kept my knee cap in line, but now – something is wrong.  I’m doping up on Ibuprofen and pedaling anyway. I’ll reach that “End of the World” sign 60 km away if I have to pedal with only one leg.

We had hoped for a special camping spot for our last night on the road – and we found it.  We’re in an old forest with an amazing density of trees.  The ground is littered with fallen trees and the whole lot is covered with moss, moss, and more moss.  “It’s almost magical,” John said.  I agree.

The boys are having a blast running and exploring.  They’re climbing trees and discovering forts and playing with Ninja swords. These months through the barren grasslands of Argentina have been hard on them and they’re thrilled to be back in forest.

We had wonderful, glorious weather for our next-to-last day on the road.  We’re keeping our fingers crossed tomorrow will be the same.

Kilometers today:  48
Kilometers to date:  27770



We cycled along Lake Fagnano for the first part of the day.


Lake Fagnano


WOOHOO!!!  Getting sooooo close!


66 km to go!


Cycoling Tierra del Fuego


Our magical campsite – we loved all the trees!




There was moss everywhere – such a huge variety of it!













books by Nancy Sathre-Vogel

About Nancy Sathre-Vogel

After 21 years as a classroom teacher, Nancy Sathre-Vogel finally woke up and realized that life was too short to spend it all with other people's kids. She and her husband quit their jobs and, together with their twin sons, climbed aboard bicycles to see the world. They enjoyed four years cycling as a family - three of them riding from Alaska to Argentina and one exploring the USA and Mexico. Now they are back in Idaho, putting down roots, enjoying life at home, and living a different type of adventure. It's a fairly sure bet that you'll find her either writing on her computer or creating fantastical pieces with the beads she's collected all over the world.

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2 Responses to Not-so-invincible

  1. charla pickerel March 25, 2011 at 7:42 am #

    Awesome story……..I hope your knee recovers now that you are there…….love the pictures and I’m sure the forest is a wonderful oasis after long dry stretches of road. What are those yellow things protruding from that stump in the last picture?

  2. nancy March 25, 2011 at 12:59 pm #

    Charla – those ball thingies were some sort of mushroom or something growing on the tree. I don’t know what they were, but thought they looked pretty interesting!

    Kerri – there really is no “balancing” of my thyroid. It’s kaput. Fried. Completely non-functional. I upped the dosage of my thyroid to account for the added activity and it worked fine. Fortunately, there IS medicine for it – don’t know how I would cope if there wasn’t.

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