Volcano avenue – This route included: some exhilarating and nervous moments passing through closed Cotopaxi volcano National Park via a back route and some private property; enduring hailstorms, fording streams and hiking through mud on the north side of Ecuador’s highest peak Chimborazo (which I resolved to return and climb); and following some manmade water channels by a somewhat treacherous drop off (real heart in the mouth moments). All part of the norm crossing Ecuador’s mountains
In this episode:
– Destruction of Colombia’s incredibly diverse and beautiful environment for the sake of money that I’m told only a handful of people seem to benefit from;
– Epic scenic winding mountain route with steep drop-offs famous amongst Colombian touring cyclists and the people of the south;
– A poor night’s sleep in an abandoned room with a strong odour of urine and loud trucks passing by all night within 15 feet of my head;
It seems that we are raised in the Western world to believe everything we do should be done as fast as possible. But for what exactly? More is not necessarily better.
I was about to leave and the owner of the camping area mentioned to me the possibility of a three to four day hike to Laguna de Magdalena (the source of Rio Magdalena that runs the whole country). It is situated high up in the páramo. The idea of missing out on this spectacular landscape got to me when I was already 2 kilometers out of town.
Huila – The Kindest People in Colombia … and that’s a bold statement in a country that seems for the most part, to be full of love and friendliness. Until I reached San Agustín 10 days later I was offered a bed in someone’s house virtually every night. Sometimes before they’d even spoken to me….
The adventures with Javier continued in full force after the first stretch from Bogota through mountains, lakes and deserts. (Rowing into the night in a canoe on the rather large Lake Prado searching for a camp spot on the jagged and rocky shoreline (unsuccessfully), the insects were of biblical proportions.) This is part II…