Mantova • Campo Canoa
7-9 giugno 2024

Mantova • Campo Canoa
7-9 giugno 2024

BIM BUM BAM

domenica, 26 Maggio, 2024


We caught up with Sisa Vottero and asked her six questions about bike traveling… but not only that!
Her preface was this:
I am not someone who can easily summarize concepts!
Happy reading!

What is the one thing you would never give up on a bike trip?
A few years ago, I would have answered differently, but now that I’ve grown up (AHAHAHAHAH), I, too, have started to prioritize the right things. So, I tell you that I would never, ever give up Gentalyn Beta.

We got to know you when you made that amazing trip with skis on your bike: a combination that drives us crazy. Can you tell us something about it?
Chile! Chile or more precisely, my CHILE’n’RIDE was my second trip ever. In 2019, I had fun combining my great loves: skiing and biking (I admit, though, that one of the two still wins hands down over the other). For this trip, I prepared, planned the stages, studied the route, and especially the volcanoes.
The goal was: 2000 km and the ascent of 7 volcanoes.
I started from Santiago on a rainy August day with a very heavy bike, especially in the front. Four “bags,” a backpack, and the skis attached to the frame for a total of thirty-five days. Chile in winter is harsh (the seasons are opposite to ours as it is in the other hemisphere), so starting in August was necessary to hope for good snow, but I took so much rain!
The trip had symbolically two parts: the first from Santiago to Puerto Montt was the ascent part. I had identified seven volcanoes, but the one in Pucon refused to be climbed, so I had six ascents in total, five smooth as oil and one we’ll talk about another time! They were all beautiful, challenging, and very windy. Majestic.
Every time I reached a summit, I could see what awaited me in the coming days, all there, along with hundreds of other snow-capped cones, waiting for me. Cold, wind. Strong wind, Patagonian wind, which if anyone still doubts its real existence, believe me: it exists and is exactly as they describe it.
After the volcanoes, the most savage challenge began, that of the Carretera Austral, a mecca for cycle travelers, although unfortunately, the cement pouring has begun to make it more accessible, especially during the toughest months.
I “took advantage” of the kindness of the lady who hosted me to leave her the things I wouldn’t need in the second part, and I made a small change to the route. I started the second part crossing the island of Chiloé, and it’s true that the longest roads hide the best landscapes.
The stages down there, no matter how much you plan them, you don’t really decide them.
You have to rely on what you find and especially make use of it because you never know if what lies ahead is really there or is better than what you’ve found.
Chile is beautiful, elegant, wild, and its inhabitants are curious, like me, which is why we got along immediately. The rain and wind slowed my progress and forced me to stop before reaching the end.
I still have about 250 km left, but time had become tight, especially since to return to Santiago, I needed to take three ships and three buses that only run on certain days of the week.
“QUE LE VAJA BIEN CHICA” is the phrase with which every human being said goodbye to me.
It was wonderful, nature repaid me for all the efforts, and even the wind eventually became my friend; I learned to listen to it.
Skiing and biking are the best combination ever, after Brigitta, of course, even if much lighter 🙂

We know your trip to India was very complicated: in the end, perhaps it is humans and not nature that complicate things?
This was my last trip, we’re talking about the end of October, and as you anticipated, it was very complicated. Originally, I was supposed to go to the North, but then work didn’t allow me, so when I managed to leave, it was too cold to cross, so Rajasthan it was. For all the difficulties I encountered, I am attracted to that dimension. An enormous, dirty, full dimension. I want to understand better, understand myself better.

You are young but have already done many things in life: opening and managing a place, being a ski instructor, part of a gravel team, etc. Is there one thing or moment in life that has defined who you are more than others?
Traveling is a bit my way of expressing past sufferings and strong emotions and somehow making my two older brothers proud, hoping they can understand, through what I live, that this is my way of saying Thank You for protecting the magical powder on my wings. I can’t afford to waste this opportunity, so I’ve given myself permission to be curious.

You like to travel alone: what aspect of this dimension do you love the most?
Alone, I have to work harder to remember all the details. I like to write my thoughts, that’s how I help myself. Traveling alone opens you up to the world, you embrace everything differently, and it has taught me to judge others less. To tell the truth, now that I think about it, the only thing I do alone is leave, but then I travel with a lot of people, with their eyes feeding my bold curiosity to always go one step further.

Recommend us a place, a book or film, and a dish, one that if it awaited you at the end of a ride, would make you pedal faster.
Home, the cyclone, and pasta with ragù.
(Tell me you’re Italian without telling me you’re Italian, I would think ahahah)
I travel, travel, but in the end, I always come back home. I like coming back, and the only thing I want to find is Brigitta, my golden retriever, companion of many adventures. In my small, very messy house, full of skis, bikes, and all kinds of sports equipment, I rest. I recharge my batteries and start fantasizing about what’s next. Here, pasta with ragù is a must, absolutely my favorite dish. All this is accompanied by a mountain of photos stuck to the walls and books of all kinds. Every now and then, I pick up “Shoe Dog,” the book by the founder of Nike, and reread some passages. I like biographies, true stories, but I am also very capable of reading highbrow books like “Three Meters Above the Sky.”