Friday, March 30, 2012

Into the Jungle

The past week has been a fairly productive one photo wise. What's that you say? 30 photos is not all that many? Well, to make them their prettiest there is a fair amount of time dedicated to each photo to get it ready for the world to see. On to a few of them. Remember, click on any of the images to be taken to the full gallery on my website.

Mountain Peaks

Mountain Peaks poking out of the clouds.

Descending down from Dead Woman's Pass

This is the trail headed down from the highest point of our hike, Dead Woman's Pass, which is at 13,800 feet. That is pretty flippin high, it gets a little tough to breath up there. I was very thankful to be on the downward slope of the pass, the hike up was long and difficult. Unfortunately for us, when we reached the top the rain started, and stayed with us pretty much the rest of the afternoon. The path was mostly rock stairs, which got rather slippery when wet, and at times, the water was flowing down the trail like a small waterfall. We all went fairly slow and made sure to choose each step carefully with hopes of avoiding a wipeout. The porters on the other hand ran down the wet stairs, with massive packs, and many in sandals. It was impressive to say the least, I think had I tried that I would have had a long painful journey down the mountain on my backside.

Moss and fungi covered bridge along the Inca Trail

After our hike down from nearly 14,000 feet we had lunch in a valley at 11,700 feet. After lunch we trudged back out in the rain to climb back up to a little over 13,000 feet. On our way down from the second pass, the vegetation and environment continued its ever changing ways. This indeed is the start of the Amazon Rainforest, and it did live up to its name. But even the rain could not quell the beauty of the place. The moss covered trees, the lush green ferns, running water, just an incredible environment to walk through. This was one of the many small wooden bridges spanning gaps in the trail.

Into the Jungle

This was a neat part of the trail which felt as if were descending right into the heart of the jungle.

Intipata Ruins

The Intipata Ruins were quite impressive. This view does not show the rows and rows of terraces which are just up the path, but it does show the incredible view. This was the third day of our hike, nearing our campsite for the evening.

There are more photos up on the site, so click on any image to view more. I'm saving some already up there for the next post, where I will talk a bit about what is probably my favorite place of the entire trip (and its not Macchu Pichu).

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