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Published: April 23rd 2006
This weekend I did a three day hike in the Colca Canyon. My guide, Maria Jesus picked me up in my apartment at 6 o´clock in de morning and we took a taxi to pick up two other girls. Annamaria from Italy and Pamela from Swiss. Stuffed in these tiny little cabs we set off for the terminal terrestre, where we took a local bus to Cobana Conde. From here the trek would start.
It turned out that it was only the four of us, other groups had up to 8 people, mostly French and Belgium this time. We set off and first walked to agreat viewing point from where we could see all over the canyon and the villages we would be visiting the next day.
The altitude was no problem, guess I got well acclimatised in Arequipa, at 3200 meters. Weather was great and our guide talked away about the canyon, politics and whatever got into her mind.
We walked for 5 and a half hours to Santiago the Chucchu, I didn´t understand in the beginning that she was referring to this place, as I was looking the whole time for the train she was mentioning. Where
Cruz del colca
Women from Cabanaconde
was that chuc chu she was talking about!
The hike went only downwards and was fairly easy even though we all ocasionally slipped. The boots I had bought in the black market were great. Cool Adidas trekkingshoes for a 160 soles, which is half the price of them in Europe. Tip: buy your shoes here!
After arriving over a slippy dangerous path to the little pueblo we were put together in a four persons room. There were no other tourists and it was full moon, so the whole valley was lit up in the moonlight. The trek had brought us through an amazing landscape of vulcanos, glaciers and a lot of geological formations formed by the vulcanos. Huge basalt rocks, sillas, pumstone and ofocurse a lot of lava. The guide cooked together with the owner of the hostal and made us soup, rice and vegetable. Expect to eat this the whole time. No electricity added to the whole scenery.
Next day we had to get up at 7 for a two and a half hour hike to the oasis. Which is another little town with with pools feeded by the river colca. This time we had crossed
Donkey, means of transportation in the canyon
the river and walked through a more densely forested area. Already had seen a snake yesterday, which scared the shits out of our guide, the thing was tiny and slithered away quite quick. Today we saw parrots, hummingbirds and a dead scorpion. Forgot to check my shoes this morning, hmm something to remember the next time.
We were also led through two tiny little towns who were about to be connected to the electrical circuit next month, you could already see the poles and wires going to their houses. Can´t stop civilization I guess.
All women were in their traditional clothes and men wore big cowboy hats.
Actually I let photo's speak from theirselves
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