Hiking in Baños


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South America » Ecuador » Centre » Baños
January 25th 2020
Published: January 30th 2020
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Today we spent the whole day in Baños, which was a really fun experience. After spending the last two weeks in one location, it was nice to take a break and have some freedom to explore a new environment. This morning, five of us hiked up a mountain 2000 ft. to overlook the city. It was definitely a bit more than we bargained for, and we ended up going nine miles by the end of the hike, but it was really fun to bond within our group and to hike in the jungle. In the afternoon, the entire class went on a bus tour of various waterfalls and we hiked down to one waterfall called ‘El Diablo.’ I’ve hiked to several large waterfalls in my life, and just like all the others, this one was unique in its own beautiful way and I really appreciated the experience.

When it comes to activities like hikes and group activities, I bring in a lot of past experiences. I’ve been to many countries and tried all sorts of things, and so sometimes I find myself comparing between them. “Oh, well this tour guide was better than the one on this other trip I
was on.” This was very true with today’s outing, especially since I’ve been on many hikes and I’ve been to many waterfalls in the past. I find it very easy to slip into a mindset of indifference because I’ve already had similar experiences. As we were doing the activities though, I really took time to appreciate the intricacies and details that made each experience unique; the rock formations at the waterfall, the strange new plants and flowers we saw on our hike, and of course the people I was spending time with. As a result, I was blown away by every bit of the experience and will probably never forget anything that we’ve done. As a whole, I think this change in mindset is coming at a good time, seeing as we will traveling for the rest of the week, and it will be a much more meaningful experience if I can appreciate the uniqueness and beauty of each situation rather than comparing to my past experiences.

(For grading purposes, this reflection is Individual)

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