A Travellerspoint blog

Far too much time in Quito...

semi-overcast 19 °C

So, what has happened since Cotopaxi?

Well, far too much actually! My hand luggage got stolen on the way from Latacunga to Baños - with my passport, two kameras, my iPod, $100 US, my diary and lots of other stuff... So instead of enjoying hot springs and downhill mountainbiking in Baños we spent a terrible day at the police station, and then we had to go back to Quito (!) to get me a new, temporary passport. Which sucks, really, cause I'll be travelling for 7 more months, and I don't even know if the countries we are planning to visit will let me in now!!! :(

We never went to Baños. Didn't feel like going back the same way... Instead, we left the mountains and went down to the coast where we spent 3 days surfing in Montañita. Great place, great people! Gave us an opportunity to stop thinking about the stolen bag.

So, Ecuador turned out a bit different than expected. Above all, we spent far too much time in Quito! And we didn't see Baños or Tena, places we had been really looking forward to. Unfortunately.

But, here we are in Cuenca, the southern highlands. Originally, we were just planning to stay here one night, buy a tent and then travel down to Zamora to see some rainforest before Peru. Though, something made us change our minds, in the last minute! Before we knew what we were doing we were on our way to Parque Nacional Cajas to do some hiking...

Best decision ever! 3 days of absolute sereneness, silence and beauty. Just the lakes, the mountains, and us! It's undescribable, really. (I so want to show you guys some pictures from there, but unfortunately we don't get this computer to cooperate with my camera right now!)

Coming up next: some horse trekking around Vilcabamba, amd then we're off to Peru! And I promise - I'll try to write more frequently...!!

Cheers
//Susanna

Posted by snatterand 18:26 Archived in Ecuador Tagged backpacking Comments (1)

Cotopaxi and altitude sickness

- we didn't make it...!

snow 2 °C

Oh well. New country and everything. Ecuador is chockingly different from Venezuela, for various reasons. Colder, of course, more organised, more tourists. The Spanish here is much easier to understand. And here are mountains!!!

We managed to arrive in Quito without any problems with the altitude (after all, not all people do). We took it easy, spent more than a week above 2500 meters, to adjust properly, before we went down south to experience some real mountains.

Ice axe, crampons and fleece underwear. We were going to climb Cotopaxi, a snowcovered volcano and Ecuadors second highest mountain... We started from the climber's refugio at 4800 meters, our guide woke us up at midnight to do the climb to the top, 5897 meters above sealevel...

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Cotopaxi

My god, I have no idea why I even tried to do it! I mean, I was already feeling the altitude sickness at that height! And also, I don't like being cold!!! I like snow when it can be used for snowboarding, and that's about it. It might have been the simple fact that I had already paid for the climb. And, oh well, I tend to be a bit stubborn from time to time...

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Climbing practice on the glacier. This is before I got ill...

First I felt fine. Made it up to the glacier entrance (5000 meters) and all. Dark, cold and most of all weird, to be... on top of the world! Because that is what it felt like. I guess that feeling kept me going. So we put on our crampons and started climbing the glacier. It's goddamn beautiful! White and clean and quiet, and huge. Thunderstorms at the horizon, a bit of snowfall where we were but the sky sparkling with stars still.

But what happened? After 200 meters or so I started feeling dizzy again. Rested for a while, kept on going... and then I puked on the glacier. And worst of all - the only thing I could think about was how nice and white and clean it was before that, and how I destroyed it all... I felt like an environmental disaster!!!

So, we had to go down again. I felt really really bad because Joakim (my boyfriend) had to go down too, and he felt just fine. But lucky for me, it turns out that all the groups have to go down, because the weather was getting worse. So it wasn't completely my fault that we didn't make it...

Down in Latacunga now, I feel fine. Though, I don't know if I'm up for any more mountains, at least not for a while...

//Susanna
(More Ecuadorian pics in my photo gallery!)

Posted by snatterand 17:22 Archived in Ecuador Tagged backpacking Comments (0)

Some pics from Venezuela

- but just a few

sunny 28 °C

So, finally guys... I know you want pictures, but I don´t really have time for internet cafés - as you can see on the picture below I'm too busy having fun!

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Though, here are a few. Check out my Venezuelan photo gallery fore more!

Cheers
//Susanna

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Man at the morning market in Caripe

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Gulliver - Santa Fe

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Green bus at Playa Colorada

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Two stupid dogs in the small indian village La Tierra Blanca. One of them (the black & white one) stole a chicken from us and is therefore known as Chicken Eater.

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The last house in the indian village Las Bonitas

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Well, they kept playing samba music pretty much all of the time at the sleepy little bar on Playa Pui Puy. So why not? Let's dance!

Posted by snatterand 16:18 Archived in Venezuela Tagged backpacking Comments (2)

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