In Tajikistan's rugged and isolated Wakhan Valley -- where animal carcasses thrive and wild campsites are a shallow river's width from Afghanistan -- my lungs gasped for air above 15,000 feet, my body rejected every piece of contaminated food I consumed, my throat coughed out sobs that were forcefully whisked away and my eyes shed rocks instead of tears after hours of battling vicious sandstorms. I fantasized about vegetables and vowed to never drink another RC Cola as long as I lived. Luckily, for every hurdle there was salvation.
Don't have a subscription to Bicycle Times? You're in luck. This article made it to the big (computer) screen! Read the full story, complete with lots of photos, on their website. An excerpt from this issue's Globetrotting column, The Road Less Motivating: