Out of the clouds

Trip Start Oct 17, 2009
Trip End Nov 25, 2009

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Flag of Peru  , Cusco,
Saturday, November 14, 2009

The trek itself was amazing. We started at the top of this crazy mountain and then the guide just started putting together bikes. Its been ages since Ive ridden a bike as well, but at least I know Im competent with bikes. So after a very short intro, we were off and I couldnīt believe that we were all riding down this mountain road on bikes. Some of the curves were a bit tight and there were a few landslides and water crossings, so it wasnīt all clear paths, but nothing too difficult. But to just be flying down the mountain with the wind beating at you and the cars sometimes passing on the other side with such amazing views. Ag. It was majestic.

But then when we stopped for lunch it rained. And our next part was to be on dirt roads. And rain meant mud instead. I couldnīt even eat lunch because all the wind had passed through my lungs and dried it out and I was already miserable from a little bit of altitude illness. But I trucked on through and made it to the end. And when we did get to the end I had muddy clothes and I was still the only one wearing full sleeves and full length jeans. Everyone else was wearing warmer weather clothing. but I made a point to not wear anything that would expose me to mosquitos. And by the end of the trip Im pretty sure I donīt regret that decision at all. I think the worst was when we were at the inka ruins and the mosquitoes got everyone. Then once we finished with that we left our original group and met up with another group. The mythic group that I still miss a lot.

A good mix of Spanish and English speakers and partyers and not-so-much-partyers and guys and girls and everything else. We were originally supposed to meet them all at the restaurant but no one was there and everyone I spoke to told me that they wouldnīt be there for a while and theyīre probably at the hot springs. So Alex and I decided that we needed to cut the losses and find these guys out since they failed to wait for us. We took a colectivo and were able to find them at least. And we got an hour at the hot springs at least. But it was just a party bus on our way back to the hostel. And once we got there we started drinking before dinner. And then after dinner we went back to drinking at a bar and we owned the dance floor because no one else was there! Even our guide joined us in the dancing.

The second day was walking instead. Our trekmates had just finished an 8 hr trek and we only had 5 hrs this day. And it wasnīt much climbing at all. It wasnīt bad. I think I had it worst for the long sleeves and jeans but it was the discomfort that I was willing to have. Very hot and a lot of following train tracks. I didnīt have too many issues with that because it created my pace and when listening to some good music you just follow that beat.

So when we finally got to Aguas Calientes we settled into our hostel and got ready for more partying before we had an early wake up call for Macchu Picchu. If you couldnīt already tell the theme of our group was partying. I learned some fun card games and we went to bed at midnight and then woke up at 4 am. We just had to get the tickets for Wayna Picchu so we had to beat the bus there to get those tickets. And it was killer to climb so fast and I got dizzy. I blame that on one of my trekmates, and I let him know I was in no condition to go at his pace. He had his reasons, and I wasnīt as motivated so thatīs just what it was. But we got to the peak before the bus hit and had a chance to celebrate with the others who climbed that morning as well.

 Macchu Picchu is a sacred place. Unfortunately when youīre with a party group and your guide is extremely boring, you donīt treat it that way. Rather than listen to our guide, we had a great time creating some interesting poses at the ruins. It really wasnīt until when we all went up Wayna Picchu to get a panoramic view (1 hr climb) that we really started to get what the hell went on with Macchu Picchu. You really have to put things in context and in modern terms to really know that it was absolutely amazing what the Inkas were able to complete with Macchu Picchu. And they did it without modern tools and you cannot believe it.
So in the end our group from the trek did not end. We met up in Cuzco that night and celebrated Robertoīs birthday with a party that you really canīt forget. And we all did it in matching t-shirts - such a unified group we were. Was up for 24 hrs: climbing steps, desecrating ruins, sliding down rainy crevasses, riding buses, and dancing the night away.
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