Tuesday, June 20, 2006

I arrive at Machu Picchu through the Sun Gate

16 June 2006, I arrive at the Sun Gate overlooking Machupicchu. Our group of 11 trekkers and 12 porters, cook, scout and toilet manager had hiked the Inca trail for four days to get here, braving altitude sickness, trail tumbles and exhaustion over altitiudes of 3,200 to 4,265 meters. We were all feeling elated and exhuasted, but thanks to our guide Jose, Tambo tours and World Expeditions, we all arrived safely.
Here I am on top of the world at wynapicchu, the peak overlooking machupicchu, 17 June 2006. Our guide, Jose Ugarte, told me of an incident on one of his many trips to the peak, where "an athletic 21 year old Australian woman" handed him a camera and asked him to photograph her on the same spot. As soon as Jose had framed the picture, she turned around and promptly leapt into a handstand. Jose´s panic at the time is understandable when you realise that this rock is surrounded by sheer drops into the valley below (you can see Wayna Picchu in the background of any photo of Macchu Picchu, it is the peak which soars above the ruined city.

Horay! Here I am in Cuzco, June 9 2006. After five days acclimatisation to the altitude, we set off on a four day hike across the Andes. Our highest altitude would be 4,265m, and the wait was necessary. Even after acclimatisation, we all suffered some degree of head ache and nausea.

1 comment:

repro said...

Erm, that should read "21 year old Austrialian woman". 12 year olds are not allowed on this trek so far as I am aware.