There are a whole series of these photos of me in front of Choquequirao, none of them very good. What I really should have done was carry a 50 lb tripod over the mountain, but since I couldn’t do that, these “hand over the head” shots will have to do.
There’s the river valley below. The Andes are STEEP mountains, I’ve been in the Rockies as well and I think the Andes are way more intense.
There’s my foot at the bottom of this picture. I think I was trying to demonstrate how this image is STRAIGHT down.
At this point my guide Jesus caught up with me and I had him snap my picture. Unfortunately, the guy had never handled cameras all that much, and he managed to swipe the camera lens with his greasy finger. The second I handed him the camera, I said, “don’t touch this!” pointing to the lens, and the first thing he did was stab the lens! Boy did that make me angry (it’s a first world problem I know and I was a little ashamed of myself for being so mad)…then again, I can hide it pretty well when I’m furious can’t I? I don’t look like I’m about to tear off somebody’s head in the picture.
That line zig-zagging its way up the mountain on the other side of the valley is the trail I had to hike all in one day. That was a tough frickin’ hike. I was exhausted when I hit the bottom of the valley, and this was the last picture I took on that day.
Looking back, I’m a little annoyed with myself because it would have been nice to have a few more pictures from that hike. But survival is always first, and I seriously couldn’t spare the energy even to unzip my camera from its case and snap a shot or two.
Hooray! Camp. You can tell by the long shadows that this was MUCH later in the day!
Giving both my feet and my underwear the chance to dry out in the sun.
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