More than a race, Andes Pacífico is a project that evolves every year. The goal is to discover, develop, and refine a pristine network of trails that cross Chile from east to west, which means that each new edition of the event brings a selection of new tracks mixed with the best places discovered in previous years. There is definitely plenty for racers to discover in 2018, in what will be the 5th edition of the race.
• 5 days of enduro style stage racing
• 6 nights camping accommodation
• Full medical support and medical field tent by Paris Dakar support crew
• All catering and hydration: breakfast, lunch, arrival picnicking and gastronomic dinners
From the infamous #antigrip dust at high altitudes, through the green wine producing valleys of the central region, to the incredible views of the South Pacific coast, there is no lack of diversity of terrain and landscapes in this intense enduro week that will remain forever in every rider's memory.
32 degrees Celsius at 5 pm made for a hot evening of setup at the campsite.
Josh Bryceland is in Chile for the first time and about to race his first blind enduro/adventure race.
Previous Masters' champ and Chilean racing legend Felipe Vasquez is sitting things out this year. A broken ankle may be keeping him off the bike, but he still has two free hands for each day's afterparty.
Iago Garay drew up custom top tube protectors that also double as a map of the five day trip from the Andes to the Pacific Ocean.
There are only a few rules here, and of those there is one that is by far the most important.
It takes tents on tents on tents to house all of the racers and staff each night.
Just read those stats and let the numbers sink in a bit... It's going to be a very long week.
Early mornings in the Andes.
Timing chips locked and loaded for a long week of racing here in Chile.
No one wants to run into a spider that lives down a hole this big either.
With temps in the 30s throughout the day, it was all about trying to stay hydrated.
The liaison to Stage 1 was definitely not short on views.
All alone in the mid-day heat.
It's a dry one out there this year.
The 85 brave souls about to tackle the 5th edition of the Andes Pacifico.
Alex 'Krunk Shox' McGuinnis drops into Stage 1 with the glacier of Cerro Plomo visible off in the distance.
Martha Gill came over from the UK and sits second in the women's rankings after day 1.
Believe it or not, there was actually some water on Stage 1 in the form of a single puddle.
Jesse Melamed gets dwarfed by some massive cactus on Stage 2.
Mark Scott has been on the podium here in previous years, and is once again right there in the running after day 1.
Milciades Jaque finished 2nd here last year, but he is going to have to turn things up a notch if he wants a repeat performance in 2018.
Local favorite, Nico Prudencio suffered a front flat on Stage 1, and it will be nearly impossible for him to make up enough time to reach the podium.
The fresh fruit laid out at every meal and every rest stop between stages is mouthwatering.
Pedro Burns is getting it done for Chile after day 1. First place in the standings just ahead of Jesse Melamed.
Josh Bryceland adapted to the conditions well on day one and is right in the mix at the front of the field.
Allan Cooke tries to come to terms with the anti-grip soil of the Andes.
Florencia Espineira has a huge lead in the women's race after day 1, and unless something catastrophic happens there won't be anyone with the speed to catch her.
Rene Wildhaber escaped the Swiss winter and is currently sitting 5th at his first Andes Pacifico.
Jesse Melamed is trying his hand at racing blind for the first time here at Andes Pacifico and ended day 1 in second place.
Cold swims in the river are an essential end of day activity in the scorching summer heat.
Ratboy and Mark Scott going for that oh-so-important first dunk into the chilly water.
Golden light and golden beers close out an amazing day.
Pull up a seat and enjoy...
It's not just beer and pisco that is flowing freely here at Andes Pacifico. The wine bottles seem to be in endless supply as well.
Riders listen in as the race directors give the race briefing for the following day. With everyone racing blind, even the smallest amounts of intel can come in very handy on the trail.
Results - Day 1
With one day of racing in the books and four more to go anything could still happen as riders make their way down from the Andes and on to the Pacific Ocean. Be sure to check in every few days for more photos and updates from this incredible journey of a race.