Mountains, Paramilitaries, Cocaine and the ¨Lost City¨

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February 5th 2007
Published: February 5th 2007
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Village of 50 Indigenous PeopleVillage of 50 Indigenous PeopleVillage of 50 Indigenous People

This is a small village that we passed through on our way to the Lost City.
Hey Everyone,

Greetings from Colombia! As you can see we are alive and well and definately taking advantage of the beauty and diversity that Colombia has to offer. Another blog is coming soon for the Colombian Coast, as this page is all about our trek to Ciudad Perdida or the ¨Lost City.¨

Located in the rugged Sierra Nevada Mountains, the Lost City is an ancient site that housed around 1500 inhabitants from an indigenous tribe that does not exist any more (built around 500 AD). The city is a marvel of engineering, built on a steep valley wall using thousands of hand cut stones to create an assortment of terraces that houses were built upon. It is an amazing site and has a rather mystical air to it as it is surrounded by deep valleys, lush rainforest and beautiful views. The city itself was so hidden in the jungle that is was not discovered until 1976, so it is a relatively new historical landmark.

The trek into it is 48km roundtrip and is organized by a tour company over 6 days. A little slow by our Canadian standards (we thought 4 days would have been perfect) but I guess they want to cater to anyone who feels up to it. Beautiful hike up through mountainous ranchland that gradually dissapears into thick rainforest that is inhabited by a few indigenous indian groups. We had a great group of people (10 in total) and some good guides that took excellent care of us.

The area where the hike is located is in paramilitary territory, meaning it is outside the control of the Colombian Army. We felt perfectly safe the whole time but it still feels strange walking past a group of 25 bushmen all sporting machine guns. The area is a producer of cocaine, hence a major reason of why the area is in paramiliary control. The control of power in Colombia is split between the Colombian Army, Paramilitaries and Guerilla Factions. The explanation of how they all co-exist in Colombia is a very long and confusing story which would require a whole separate blog to try and make sense of. Check it out on the internet if you still are interested...Colombia is a very interesting country, and for the time being all parties seem to getting along quite well without violence. Lets hope it can stay that way.

Additional photos below
Photos: 22, Displayed: 22


Village girlVillage girl
Village girl

So cute but she was really shy...
Ben PosingBen Posing
Ben Posing

After a hard day of hiking we hit the swimming pools

Don´t worry mom, the tail has been cut off.
The Lost City - ToolsThe Lost City - Tools
The Lost City - Tools

This is what was used to crush grains.
The Lost City - WaterfallThe Lost City - Waterfall
The Lost City - Waterfall

This is the stream where the town got there water from.
Modifided Land CruiserModifided Land Cruiser
Modifided Land Cruiser

This was our transportion to the hike.
Most Convient Traveling DrinkMost Convient Traveling Drink
Most Convient Traveling Drink

Rum in a juice box and cola in a powder form, what more can you ask for!

9th February 2007

You found the lost city!
What up Ben and NAs! Good to see that you are having a blast and learning to make Cocaine...odd. The pics look great, but ben you look like one ofthe locals in your swimming pic...DARK! All the best. We just touched down in Singapore and will be here for Chinese New years. All the best Jordan

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