Crossing the Andes and into Chile

Trip Start Feb 17, 2010
Trip End Apr 15, 2010

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Where I stayed

Flag of Chile  , Lake District,
Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Louise's birthday is today - Amber the truck is decorated with balloons and ribbons.  We left at 8 am.  We drove through Bariloche into scrub land again, then rolling hills.  We stopped overlooking a lake and had a breakfast of scrambled eggs and all our leftover fruit, meat, vegetables, cheese, etc.  There was some gorgeous scenery in the river valley before the border crossing.

There was a stunning snow-capped
volcano at the border crossing into Chile and the road had monkey puzzle trees on both
sides.   I kept trying to take a photo of the volcano with the monkey puzzle trees in the foreground
from the truck, but it was not easy.  Of course when we stopped, the setting didn't seem like the best.  Oh, well. I have managed to get a reputation as someone who has
taken, is constantly taking, many photos, but my rate is off from my usual vacation
number of photos per week.  In retrospect, it is too many photos...since it has taken me ages to process them all!

The scenery changed dramatically once we were west of the Andes although it didnīt seem like
a huge mountain pass or mountain range.

After we arrived at our Pucon hostel, Claudio the adventure-tour mover-shaker of Pucon came to brief us on the activities - mostly the volcano climb, hot springs and trekking in the park.  Hilary convinced me to do the volcano climb even though I had no clean socks again.  But Sarah rescued me yet again and offered to lend me a pair of hers.  Thank you, Sarah.  We got all of our equipment (parka, snowpants, gaiters, 2 pairs of gloves, ice axe, hat, equipment for sliding on the snow, and a pack to put it all in).  I also got a pair of high hiking boots since my shoes were low.  We were told to carry 1.5 liters of water and bring energy snacks, sunscreen, and sunglasses.  Since I only had my glasses, Claudio promised to give me his extra goggles in the morning. 

Then we went out for dinner.  Deb sat on Paul's lap, much to his dismay, and then stuffed french fries down Hilary's dress.  It all had to do with James thinking that Deb was forty and she is much younger than that.  I took in my laundry, showered and plugged in my charger.  I have a bottom bunk since there was no ladder.  Deb was very thoughtful about that and also offered to set her alarm for me for 6 am.  What a pal!!
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