Paracas - 09-10 April 2014

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April 10th 2014
Published: November 16th 2014
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Passing the slower local traffic
Wednesday 9th April (Odyssey Day 152)

We left Huaraz at 0830 this morning, well just after actually since we were running a bit late. Emma gave a mini briefing and told us she would go through the rest of the itinerary for the trip at dinner tonight. There had been a few whispered complaints circling among the group about not knowing what was coming up in the next section after Peru, and though I’d rather not look too far ahead myself, I do understand the desire to know what is coming in more detail.

We headed back toward the coast again, to the southern part of Peru. It was a lovely drive back through the mountains toward the coastal plains once more. However the stop for tonight was to be just before the plains, as we made a bushcamp in Reserva Lachay in the early afternoon, around 1430. The ground was rather hard and just as well it isn’t windy, as attempting to hammer in any pegs here proved to be a largely futile gesture.

The Reserve is an area
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Some beautiful views as we wind our way down through the mountains
of two distinct contrasts. In the dry season (which is now) it is an area of brown and grey desert hills and dry scrub, seemingly barren of any real life. However, it apparently becomes an oasis in the wet season (starting late June), primarily from the mist which hangs in the air and provides much needed moisture to the plants.

Dry as it was, we were still happy to be camping early as this gave people plenty of time to do the two hour walking trail around the park if they wished. Of course there was also the option to stay at the camp and have a couple of beers instead, to combat the rather hot and dry weather. Definitely the right choice as a nice soft breeze came in and we watched a spectacular sunset down through the hills as we started preparing dinner – talk about a kitchen with a view!

I was on cook group tonight and we made a pasta meal. It was very nice, and there are certainly no complaints about camping when it comes with the only vegetables we are
Reserva Lachay CampReserva Lachay CampReserva Lachay Camp

Our rather barren campsite, with some stunning twilight views
likely to get in these parts. We forgot to do the hot chocolate again though, oh well I guess it will wait until tomorrow night (unless we forget yet again, which is highly likely – it will probably still be there when we arrive back in Buenos Aires the way we are going). Starting so early meant we could take our time cooking, eating and cleaning up from dinner. It’s nice to take our time for a change.

Thursday 10th April (Odyssey Day 153)

I was up before dawn this morning to watch the sun rise over the sea of clouds below us. It was a beautiful morning and well worth the early start. We then packed up and departed our camp at Reserva Lachay to head toward the coast and therefore the beach.

We made a brief stop at the information centre at the Paracas National Reserve, where they had a display of marine life and some interesting explanations regarding the development and conservation of the area, and how important the biodiversity is. It
Reserva Lachay CampReserva Lachay CampReserva Lachay Camp

Sunset over the reserve
was really interesting and the plan is to camp somewhere in the Reserve tonight – hopefully somewhere near the beach but away from the wind which picked up more and more today as we got closer to the coastline.

Our next stop was a little further along the coast at ‘La Catedral’ lookout. Apparently it was an arch coming out from the cliff into the water but the bridge part of it collapsed during an earthquake in 2007. The part of the rock that is left looks distinctly like a rough-drawn map of Australia, I thought. It was incredibly windy by this point though, so we didn’t linger long at all.

We then drove back along the trail a bit before pulling over to make camp on the sand. It isn’t all that close to the water, but you can see the bay from this spot. We pulled up near some sand hills, in an attempt to find somewhere to camp that wouldn’t have all our tents blowing away in the strong wind. We don't hold much hope though and everyone made sure to have something
Reserva Lachay CampReserva Lachay CampReserva Lachay Camp

The golden sunset turns a stunning red before disappearing into the night
heavy inside their tents to avoid losing them...

We made a fire tonight to cook some lasagne over, having discovered there wee plenty of rocks around to make a windbreak with. It was a nice place to camp but rather a bit windier in the afternoon than we would have preferred. Fortunately for us it died down quite a lot in the evening, and even more overnight. We all know we will have to sweep out our tents at the next stop though, as there was no keeping the sand completely out, regardless of how we tried.

Additional photos below
Photos: 11, Displayed: 11


Reserva Lachay CampReserva Lachay Camp
Reserva Lachay Camp

Emma and Hannah on dinner duty
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Reserva Lachay Camp

Dawn brings a sea of cloud over the lower mountains
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Room with a view?
Paracas National ReserveParacas National Reserve
Paracas National Reserve

Information Centre - a model of a prehistoric pelican
La CatedralLa Catedral
La Catedral

What is left of it, anyway...
Paracas National Reserve CampParacas National Reserve Camp
Paracas National Reserve Camp

Cook team making lasagne on the campfire - Johnny, Steve, Ellie, Emma and Simon

20th November 2014
Reserva Lachay Camp

I'm due to check out Peru shortly. Hope I see views like this!

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