Thursday, 10 December 2009

Tuesday 8th December

Started today at Quilatoa lake, which occupies the crater of an active volcano. The surface of the lake ripples continually as sulphurous gases escape from the base of the crater 2000m below the surface (!). Lake was a spectacular green colour in the morning sunshine.

Reasonably long trek this morning which we managed in 3 hours. A couple of the uphill sections had us flagging somewhat. Apparently it has taken Miguel 7 hours in the past. There were some awesome views, a slightly dodgy river crossing, and an entire village-full of people heading up a mountain not far away for no discernable reason. Our en-route Spanish lessons are progressing well, though Caroline is a rather more apt pupil. Olly just puts it down to the mindset of these strange arty types...

We reached the hostel at Chugchilán in plenty of time for a shower before lunch.

In the afternoon we visited a local carpentry and cabinetry school - they use a lot of nice hardwood in their fabrication, but you've got to ask how sustainable it is. After another walk in the afternoon to the high-point of a canyon side with views down to the river and farms in the valley, we returned to the hostel to indulge in a table football fest. When a group of local children turned up and insisted on joining in then dancing, we had the best night's entertainment we've enjoyed for a while!

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