Colca Canyon

Trip Start Jun 11, 2013
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Trip End Jul 12, 2013


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Flag of Peru  , Arequipa Region,
Sunday, July 7, 2013

Early start on a bus to the canyon, we arrived to cruz del condor viewpoint to find 10-15 huge Condors circling above us. Majestic powerful birds that were riding the thermals and diving down to their nests on the cliff face, it was almost like they were performing for us.

We commenced the decent to San Juan settlement down the second deepest canyon on the planet. Three hours later with Elvis legs we arrived at a small suspension bridge and a welcomed freezing cold dip in the river. The evening highlight was the stars, with no light pollution it was breathtaking and the Milky Way was beautiful. A small fire with stories about the town distinguished the sky so I turned in for what was going to be the most peaceful ten hours sleep I'd had in a while.

Waking up to the Colca canyon outside your front door created hairs on the back on the neck and a huge smile. I listened to some music as we weaved our way along a cactus laden path finding it difficult due to my lack of trust in the hostel staff and therefore bringing items I didn't need like the iPad I now write on. Twenty minutes into the trek we all got an early morning wake up from a random boar that perched on a head height embankment, a few choice grunts made us jump out of our skins.
Arriving a hotel paradisio four hours later we had a great little rock pool and more company. The tour included Claudia (Germany), Grant (USA) and a French couple who I don't choose to remember due to their lack of involvement in the group.
Met an American girl called Hilary from Indiana so sat drinking with her sister and friend the night before our mammoth climb out of the canyon.

Alarm sounded at four thirty and we started our ascent on what would turn out to be the hardest climb of my life. With my overpacked bag and lack of a good meal the climb was intense yet one of the best challenges I have overcome. The sunrise over the mountain ridges alongside the emerging colours of the canyon were spectacular.
Arriving at the top I felt such a sense of achievement, so we headed to a restaurant for breakfast and chilled out in some natural hot springs where you could see the water bubbling out of the earth. Returning to Arequipa completely content with my Colca Canyon experience aside from the group dynamics.

It doesn't come as fresh news but definitely reinforced to me that it doesn't matter where I am it's who I'm with that matters. Also I decided that I agree with people sometimes when my feelings contradict what they say and I made a mental note to express how I feel a little more than just agreeing for an easy life.
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