Villarrica Volcano!!

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February 7th 2009
Published: February 7th 2009
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After two days of hanging around in Pucon under grey skys and rain, the horizon finally cleared to the site of the Villarrica Volcano. The Villarrica Volcano is an active Volcano situated outside of the town Pucon where I have come to stay for a week or so. Myself and my four friends woke early to setoff on the trek up Villarrica. To climb the Volcano you must be with a guide and have the proper equipment as the conditions in the high altitude can turn for the worse very quickly. We got our gear together and headed to the base of the Volcano by bus. There, with out ice picks, crampons, and the rest of our gear, we began the trek up Villarica.

As we made our way up the side of the volcano the views only got better and better. We were above the cloudline and surrounded by panoramic views of the surrounding lakes, mountains, volcanoes, and towns. The climb was long and steep. We took breaks along the way, drank water and snacked on the food and chocolate we had brought. Words really cannot describe the experience, and pictures do not give the views justice. It was majestic, spectacular, just pure beauty.

The wind was extreme towards the middle of the climb. There were times when most of us did not think we would be able to climb to the top because of the weather. We pushed through the pain and were greeted at the top to the immense crater, a 360 degree view of region, and those lovely toxic fumes that come from the volcanoes depth. It took us a little more than five hours to climb, but every second of the trek was worth it.

I guess you can say a good amount of the fun came on the way down when we sledded down the majority of the snow-capped volcano using our ice-picks as breaks. While I said it took us about five hours to climb, it took about one and a half to come down.

All in all this was by far one of the best treks I have done so far. The gorgeous views, the weather conditions, and the people I met all just made it an amazing experience.

When I look back on the day, the idea of climbing an active volcano is pretty scary. Last year in Chile in the town of Chaiten a long dormant volcano erupted destroying most of the town. I guess knowing that possibility is part of the thrill.

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7th February 2009

unbelievable is not the word. glad to see u had the right clothes for the cold weather kid. otherwise they would have had to carry u down like a frozen statue. who are all the cute guys?

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