Bolivian Death Roads

Bolivia is infamous for its wild mountain roads, primitively carved into the sides of high altitude mountains.  One in particular is famous for its big drop-offs and for taking numerous lives over the years earning the name, the Death Road.

Skeptical of taking Spaceroamer_1, my Ram Promaster cargo van on such a road, I decided to take a scout lap via bicycle. These days, the Death Road is less driven by vehicles and more of a tourist bike route. Lucky for me I had my own bike, hitched a ride to the top of the newly paved highway pass which has eliminated the need to take the Death Road and rode down from there. 

It proved to be a very scenic road! As a fairly experienced mountain biker, the biking is nothing extraordinary as you are on a gravel road.  Regardless, the views are stunning and I am happy I was able to scout what I was about to get into with the van. 

Strategically, I wanted to drive up the Death Road as it is required to “stay to your left.”  This means for any passing situation I would be required to hug the inside of the mountain and as the driver, I would be sitting on the inside of the road (less scary in my opinion).

After a fun bike ride down and a lot of contemplating, I committed to driving the iconic route with the van and it proved to be a beautiful experience, with no problems. Driving under waterfalls, across thin stretches of crumbling road and around thrilling turns with 500ft+ drops, it’s not for the faint hearted but its a fun one to have checked off the list. 

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