Day 2 in Otovalo, Ecuador
02.07.2010 - 03.07.2010
Last night, I looked out the back balcony of our hostel and the old church was lit up with all sorts of colors...I will try to upload a picture. Today was really cool. I made arrangements with the hostel desk to take a tour up to a waterfall and a mountain lake. We headed out at 10:30 am and were gone until 2:30! We drove up to a lake called Laguna de Mojanda. It was at about 3800 meters (which is about 11,500 feet - as tall as the peak of Mt. Hood!). We then hiked up a trail that was nearly vertical, and climbed about 400 meters...about 1100 feet in a matter of maybe maybe a quarter mile horizontal distance. It was one of the hardest things I´d ever climbed, and add to that the altitude and thin air to begin with! I´ll add a picture or two of the area so be sure to check out my photo album! After working our way back down to the cab, we headed back down the hillside a little to where there´s a "famous" waterfall. It wasn´t terribly impressive, because it´s the dry season here. I´m sure when it´s wet out, there´s got to be a ton of water pouring through. The pictures of the countryside and the canyon where the waterfall is did turn out nice though. We got this escorted tour from our cab driver (including the cab fare for a mere $10 per person...not bad for four hours of his time!). We then headed to the well-known indigenous market, where I made some great purchases of Alpaca wool products...including a great 100% Alpaca blanket for $12 and Alpaca socks for $2! After that, we went around the corner to this chicken roaster place and got a whole plate of food (I opted for the non-chicken plate), For $2 I got a steak patty (yes patty, it wasn´t hamburger), lentils, rice, a hot dog, soda and fries!
That´s pretty much the short version of the day. Tomorrow we are planning another tour of some small villages and scenic areas with the same driver, again for $10 per person.
Be sure to check out my pictures!