Day Four - The Colca Canyon

Trip Start Jul 08, 2008
Trip End Jul 24, 2008

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Sunday, July 13, 2008

We got up at 5 AM this morning! Our room was nice and warm but as soon as we left the room the rest of the hotel was freezing. We ate a small breakfast (with instant coffee) and tried to keep warm until it was time to board the bus again. Even though we were still tired, we all appreciated how pretty the morning was with the sun rising over the valley. Then the road got a little rough, and then rougher, and then we were bouncing all over the road. The road that barely seemed wide enough for such a large vehicle. Was I the only one who noticed that the wheels of the bus were practically hanging off the edge? I tried to remain calm but it was getting hard to breath. This guy(obviously an experienced back road bus driver) was driving extremely fast, up and down hills on this very curvy unpaved road. I just knew the bus was going to bounce right off the road. But it didn't. After a quick stop to see if anyone wanted to buy some more hats and gloves we arrived at the Colca Canyon.

We walked around for awhile, and then sat and waited for the highlight of the day to fly by. An Andean Condor. The real reason most people venture to this spot. For me, I was happy to look over the edge of the Colca Canyon and admire the vastness of it all. After an hour or so we did spot some Condors flying around. Lucky us.

Ok. Colca Canyon, check. Andean Condor, check. Funny looking Andean Rabbit, check. We were ready to get back on the dreaded bus and head back to civilization. This time the driver had to turn around, so he backed the bus as close to the edge as possible in order to make the turn. He did this 3 or 4 times until he had the turn completed. With the last back up over the cliff I let out a short scream. I couldn't help it. I could feel us going right over the edge of the deepest canyon in the world. Not exactly how I want to die. Whew!

We ate lunch in Chivay, and then stopped one or two more times just to be sure nobody needed to buy any hats or gloves. When we arrived back in Arequipa the road to our hotel was blocked off again so we had to walk a few extra blocks. Ahh hot water and internet access.
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