Before the Silk Road Mountain Race, Rickie Cotter journeyed alone in Kyrgyzstan to find some peace – and some fear – for herself. She ended up finding far more. Words Rickie Cotter Photography Ellen Mosman “Can you find me a bra? A dog has eaten mine.” Panic over, it’s in his cage. He’s just sitting on it. Kyrgyzstan is a place to expect the unexpected – a place where every day opens the door to something crazy, and that uncertainty brings with it a wild charm. And possibly even an unnerving charm. But that too, is part of the charm. I needed to leave. To turn off the internet for four weeks. I wanted to just ride my bike and needed to feel fear. My head was hectic leaving Bishkek, Kyrgystan’s capital, but as soon as I headed into the silence of the mountains I felt free. I could breathe.