“Your legs are not giving out. You head is giving up. Keep going.”
Though our second pass was difficult – 2,500m of gain plus a fifteen kilometer extra climb up and down somewhere in the middle – the mountains and valleys all around made the steep climb worth it. Our favorite part of this pass was when an older couple invited us into their home for tea and fresh pastries that she made right there in front of us. The village was near the top, 2,000m high, and already had a tiny bit of snow on the ground (and was below freezing every night). In fact, all of the surrounding houses were already abandoned for the season, and our lovely couple was headed out to their winter home for the next eight months the very next day. Though we had never really pictured Turkey to be a cold and snowy place, we are quickly realizing that it’s a good thing we started on these passes when we did because a week or two later and we could have easily been trudging through snow. In just one week Turkey has bumped it’s way up to our favorite country this trip as the paved quiet roads, beautiful scenery, and hospitable people have made every single day wonderful.