Monday, June 22, 2009

Going Home

Well we are leaving in about 5 hours and we are packed and ready to go. We have spent the last week or so on the beach in a few realy cool towns along to coast of Ecuador. We have had a blast and are now ready to get home and see everyone!

I will save the last week of the trip to tell you about the next time I see you.

Orin

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Three Canadians Seek Boobies on Island of Silver...

What an exelent day, we took a tour today over to the Isla de la Plata (Island of Silver). It has been called the poor mans Galapagos Island, since it has some of the rare species on it that are found also on the Galapagos.


The island is 40 kms off the coast and takes about an hour and a half to get there. The seas were about 5 feet on the way over and it was realy choppy. Quite a rough ride. The guild had told us that there was a possibility that we may see some humpbacks on our way over, but we wern´t holding our breath. Luckly about 30 minuets into our journey we spoted some spray comming from the blowhole!! We chaced them down and found three humpback that put on a prety good show for us. The smaller one was doing some half jumps and splashing his tail arround quite a bit. We lost them for a little while but then they poped up right behind us and we watched them swim right under us!



Just as we were pulling up to the island, the bay we were in was full of huge sea turtles!! So we watched them for a while from the boat, but then they got spooked and swam off. On the island we did a 5km hike and saw a bunch of birds. The highlight had to have been the blue footed boobies. The jokes for these birds just flow like wine. If you have ever seen a picture of a bird on a Galapagos postcard or poster on anything, its probly a blue footed boobie. We also saw red footed boobies, red headed turkey vultures and a few other jarassic park looking birds whos names I can not remember.



We got back in the boat and took a 5 minuate ride to our snorkeling spot. It was much cooler than where we went yesterday. We saw alot of huge fish at this spot, and lots of cool coral formations. We spent alot of time in the water snorkeling but then Sage and I swam into a pack of jelly fish...No fun. Sage some how got stung on the nipple and on the leg and I got one on my moooustache and my forehead. They dont realy hurt but just are realy anoying so we got out. They were so small and clear that you couldnt even see them till they stung you. Besides the jellys, it was an awesome snorkeling adventure.



The way back was a little crazy, the seas got alot rougher and it took us almost 2 hours to return. I figured the swells were about 10 feet, since when we were in the bottom of them the water beside us was well over the roof of the boat! I had a great time getting soaked but Sage on the other hand with her motion sickness was not enjoying it nearly as much as I was. We made it tho, safe and sound and had an exelent day.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Leaving town

Quito has been great, Riley has got a new passport and we are heading out in a few minuates to get to the coast and get diving. Quito has been great. The hostel we are staying at is awesome and we have been cooking up a storm! We even found syrup for our pancakes and sour cream for our nachos. Stuff we havent had since we left! We have just been exploring arround the city and checking out some of the cool old buildings a such. We went into an old church where you could climb all the way up the clock tower and see out over the intire city. Quite the view!


One evening we headed out to the hot springs about 2 hours by bus from town. It was an exelent place and the pools were nice and deep and great to swim arround in. It was kinda wierd as we got a bus out there in the afternoon and were told that there was busses returning all night. So we enjoyed our time at the hot spings then did the 2 km walk to the road to catch the bus at 11 at night! Kinda creepy.... We sat for a while playing cards till we decided to walk another 2 kms into the town since there was no sighn of buses. There was a hotel right beside where we were waiting so I sugested that we go in and ask to see where to catch the buses. There was a happy family in the hotel enjoying a meal that informed us that we needed to walk to the highway to catch the bus, but they were heading to Quito that night and could give us a ride. It worked out perfectly, we did have to ride in the back of there truck, but luckly they had a canopy to keep the wind down and after a few games of 21 questions we were at our hostel!

The next day riley spent all day getting his pasport and trying to get an entry stamp. Hes standing in the capital city of Ecuador witha brand new passport and they still wont give him a stamp into the country??? Cant seem to figure that one out, but the people at the embasy say they will call the airport and let them know so he can get out of here in 2 weeks.

We left the next day for Quayguil, where we spent the night then today we headed to Puerto Lopez. An easy 3 hour bus ride that landed us right on the coast with lots of diving and snorkeling to be had!!!! Riley and I were hoping to take our PADI diving course but it seems that they want over 400 american for the 4 day course so we are thinking of doing the introduction to diving to at least get us breathing underwater 10 meteres. With the short time we have left we are going to try to spend most of it on the coast doing some diving, snorkeling and swimming!!!

Thats realy all I have new to report. Riley is still an illegal immmigrant to this country and we spent a little time last night half way thru our bus ride explaining to an officer how stupid his country is, but it was realy nothing and after about 5 mins we where back on the bus.

2 weeks till we get home.....See you soon.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Quito - A Wild One

Well Jordan left and had a decent flight home apparently, the plane out of Chiclayo was a little late so his connection in Lima was tight, but he made it home safe and sound and with a few storys im sure. We had planned to leave for the Ecuador boarder the next day but that night I fell quite ill so we had to stay in town for a few days till I was up for a bus ride.

We were fairly late leaving so we only made it as far as Mancura, wich is a good thing cause Tumbes (where we were trying to get to) is a terrible terrible place we learned yesterday. The worst part is that Riley left his pasport on the bus and when he went back someone had stole it along with a few hundred american dollars. He got a police report from the cops and they told him that he could probly get into Ecuador with that and get to the Canadian embasy in Quito. Otherwise he was going to have to take a bus to Lima, 1000 kms away and get a pasport there.

Mancura was a nice little town on the ocean that is packed full of tourists and tourist spots, but the beach rules and the water was warm so we spent a few days. The resturants all have tables set up right on the beach so you can just sit and eat awesome rice and seafood dishes for a few bucks! Riley was ancious to get going and try to get into Ecuador so we left yesterday to give it a shot.

Yesterday was the most stressfull days so far. The bus ride up to Tumbus was a little cramped witch im sure didnt help the whole situation. They cram so many people into a van down here it sucks. Luckly it was only about an hour and a half of not feeling my legs. When we got into Tumbes we were, as always, bombarded by people trying to give us a taxi. We thought the boarder was right in Tumbes so we jumped in a mototaxi (motorcycle turned into a trike). We drove for about a minuate then we stoped at a car and he told us that we were going to take the car to the boarder. As we threw our bags in the back a bunch of guys just came out of the wood work, wich happens down here some times cause people just love to stare. We got a bad feeling about it right away so we grabed our bags out of the car and told him that we weren´t getting in the car. He said alright and told us that we would take the moto.

Now looking back on it, its quite easy to see that we should have just walked away from the situation. But for some reason when your standing with your bag on your back, in the heat with a few people trying to talk to you in spanish its very hard to make decisions some times.

The guy said it was 2 soles each to get to the boarder, so we went for it. Between the three of us we were not worried about 1 guy on a motorcycle, but just as we were leaving another jumped on the back of the mototaxi. We seemed to think that he was on the bus from Mancura with us and just need a ride to the boarder and we thought he was on our side. He was a realy nice guy and chatted with us most of the way, till it was his turn to drive cause these mototaxis vibrate like crazy on the highway and no man could hang on for the 30 minuate ride it turned out to be.

We got to the Peru immigration and I tryed to pay the guy and get him to leave us alone. He wasnt going for it and told us that there was still 10 minuates to go to get to the boarder. He was in the immigration office before we were and at this point I was not happy. Riley had no passport, just a police report to try to talk his way through. We entered a room with an official and had a good conversation with the guy, he stamped something and sent us to another guy who stamped us out of Peru in our passports.

We were waiting outside for about 5 mins, then Sage decided to go inside and check on Riley. As she walked into the room she saw Riley and an official standing in the corner of the room and Riley, looking very pissed off was handing over a bunch of money. Sage was quickly led out of the room and told to wait outside. About a minuate after she came out so did Riley, looking still very pissed off. Rileys luck has not been traveling with him and had just been robbed by a cop!! There goes another hundred american, poor guy. He did get a stamp out of Peru and was told he could get into Ecuador.

Anyway, now we were infront of the immigration office wich is still apparently a few miles from the boarder. So we loaded back into our mototaxi and headed for the boarder. At this point we were three pissed off travelers. The mototaxi then proceded to take us to some sort of truck storage lot and told us that the boarder was right arround the corner. Now we were very unhappy and a little scared as a bunch of men came over. We went to pay him our 2 soles each and 2 quickly turned to 12. After a little arguing with these guys we decided to cut our losses, pay the guy and get the hell out of there. We threw him the money, told him what we thought of him and bailed, quickly. The next corner was lined with cops and we had a little bit of relief.

This boarder crossing was "stupid". Theres 2 towns, one on the peruvian side and one on the Ecuadorian side and the immigration offices are hidden in the towns for you to find. The Ecuadorian immigration office is 5 kms out of town....great. So we grabed a taxi and went to see what we could do. Sage and I got through no problems, but of course they weren´t giving Riley any kind of stamp on anything, but hell we were already in Ecuador so we jumped on a bus to Quito where there is an embasy so he could get some sort of passport.

We were a little nervous taking a bus with an illegal immagrent for 12 hours, but we realy didnt see any other practical option. As luck would have it, about 15 minuates after we left we were stoped at the exact immigration office that we had just been at........Luck was on our side an no one came onto the bus and we left in about 10 mins, then to another checkpoint, again 10 mins of shaking in our boots, and agin more luck. Finaly at the third checkpoint "everyone off the bus with your passport".......Shit. Riley was last man through the gate and the guard was great and understood our situation and let him go!!! Best news all day. This new lefted our spirits a little and we had a nice bus ride to Quito.

We got an awesome hostel in Quito in a big old house with a nice kitchen, patio, laundry area and everything we could ever need. Perfect for our situation.

So on the whole yesterday was a big learning experiance. We had heard that that boarder crossing was the worst on the continent and boy was it ever. But we made it thru and Riley is at the embasy as we speak arranging to get a new passport. It takes only 15 days to get a passport here. Wish it was that easy in Canada.

Anywho, we are relaxing now and heading to the store to get some ingrediants to cook up some food for the first time since Cuzco!!! I think that they even have beans here.
Adios for now.
Orin

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Chiclayo

Well the surf was great. We spent our fair share of time on the beach and finaly had to set out to get Jordan on his plane. It was a very entertaining 3 hour bus ride with a few salesmen selling all sorts of stuff. Then we had a flute player play us a little tune then a guy with a guitar stumming away! The local buses are a little crazy.

We are just on our way back fro the main market in town that has everything. Hundreds of vendors selling everything from fabric, fruit, veggies, meat, tupperware and realy anything you could ever imagine. Sage is feeling a little sick today so the boys are out running arround trying to speak some spanish. People in Chiclayo realy like to stare, and when we were at dinner last night these 2 kids watched us for about 20 minuates steady till there parents left and they followed.

Well Jordans plane leaves tonight, so we will send him off, stay the night, then head to equador tommorow hopefully if Sage is feeling better. I believe that its only about a 12 hour bus ride right into Quito so it shouldnt be to bad. The boarder crossing is suposed to the worst in south america so we will see how that goes and hopefully we can just cruise into equador without any trouble.

Recent reports have told me that the weather is getting better in the okanagan and in vancouver, so I hope that everyone is enjoying it and riding there motorcycles as much as possible. jajaja

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The Surf

After tortugas we jumped another bus a headed north to Huanchaco. Its a awesome town and are looking forward to spending a week here or so. Jordans flight is from the city about 2 hours north of here and the surf is awesome and so is the cheap food. We realy cant see any reson why we would leave.

We have just been hanging out and relaxing! Theres random people with little BBQ´s arround on the steets that have amazing kabobs for a buck or so, and these wonderfull stuffed potatos. A few liver kabobs and a spud make a great meal for under 4 bucks! We have are ladys picked that we go to, and they seem just thrilled to see us.

We surfed the second day we were here and the next working I awoke feeling like I have fallen down the side of a mountain. I think a few weeks of surfing would whip you into the best shape of your life. We have now taken 2 days rest and are looking to get back in the water tommorow. The surf is huge today and its supposed to be big still tommorow, so im a little nervous but with bigger surf comes way nicer waves that look easyer. Im just not looking forward to battling through them to get out to where there not breaking where I can just sit on my board in awe waiting for a wave that looks good.

We are livin the life now and realy enjoying it. As soon as Jordan takes off we are going to head to Equador and hit some surf on the southern coast then bust it to Columbia where we can do some snorkeling and hopefully get our diving tickets on the Caribbean!!!!

Well sorry I took so long to do a little writing. I regret waiting that long since I just never feel like writing so much and I feel like my writing goes to shit, so im going to try and keep this thing up to date. Dont know how many times I have had to say that. My journal has that in it at the begining of every page...

Orin

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Such a Long Time Ago...

We left Cuzco arround 8am, and got tossed in a van and headed up and over the hill to Machu Pichu. None of us realy had any idea how far the van ride was going to be, but I was thinking somewhere in the 2 hour region, boy was I wrong. The road twised its way to Ollantaytambo, where most people jump off the bus and get onto the train. This is a very expensive option since the train is owned by and european company now and they have made the prices just rediculous. So we pressed on for Hydroelectirca.

The road past Ollantaytambo was the most impresive roads I have ever seen, and made Jordan I drool in disbelief that roads like this exist only when our motorcycles and thousands of miles away. It was probly over an hour up and and hour down of 1/2 - full mile straight aways with hairpins on either end and brand new pavement. Would have been wonderfull. Sage on the other hand was not enjoying tyhe road so much and was starting to get a little pale in the face region. By the time we got to the top and saw that we had just as far to go down she had had enough and made the driver pull over for a few minuates to stop the spinning in her head.

After we left the pavement it was still a good hour till we got to our lunch spot. Oh and we expected to eat breakfast at our hostel before we left but for some reason on that day they didnt feel like making any breakfast so we were all starving. The dirt was a little slower so Sage was in stable condition as we wound through the jungle. It was the first real jungle we have seen, with banana trees everywhere!

Things were looking up and it apeared that the road was going to chill out a little bit but soon agin we started climbing and climbing. This road was just as impressive but in a different way. It clung to the steep mountain side for what seemed like forever about a mile over the canyon floor. I was sitting on the cliff side of the van right at the window and was TERRIFIED! The driver actualy had to get out and move some of the rocks that formed a little barrier so we could get the van by!!! It was about an hour of terror before we got to the town where we ate some food then contiued about 30 minuates to Hydroelectica where we got the train to Aguas Calientas, our base camp for Machu Pichu.

In Aguas Calientas we met with our guide Freddy, who showed us to our hostel and eatting spots. He was a little scatterbrained and realy didnt know what was going on sice some of us had 2 days there while others were only there for 1. He got us our tickets for Machu Pichu and we went straight to bed to get some rest for our 4am departure.

The alarm beeped and no one moved. 4am was a terible time to be starting a hike, but after a while we all realized that we best get moving if we want to see the sunrise. The hike started out quite enjoyable. Even tho it was 4 there were quite a few people stirring arround town. I guess its a popular time to leave. The hike startes with about 20 minuates of flat road walking before the trail heads straight up the mountain for 3 kms of hell. It was one hell of a climb that left me gasping for air quite a few times. Once we got to the top we realized why we left so early, as the line was already quite big and the busses were pouring people in.

We had been told that we were allowed to bring in 20 litres of whatever we wanted, so we packed up some nice lunch stuff and a bunch of water. But at the top there was a stir of people that were pissed of cause they were getting there bags searched and getting told that they couldnt come in with there bags and they had to leave them in the storage area. With some stroke of luck just as we got to the ticket booth, the other side opened up and the guy on that side didnt seem to care at all and just waived us through. Perfect!

We waled for about 500 more feet to where it all opened up and we could see it all. It was amazing, so green and peaceful. Of course there was one more "rush" that had to be done. That huge mountain you see in the back of all the pictures of Machu Pichu is called Huanupich and actualy has a ruin on the top of it and of the thousands of people that come to Machu Pichu everyday, they only let 400 up. So we had to go jump in line to get our stamp so that we could go up. After we got our stamps, we headed to the highest point to watch the sunrise over the mountain.

The sunrise was so beatutif that we missed our tour. Whoops. We figured that we could just wanted and toss an ear in on some other tours that were taking place so thats eaxctly what we did. We wander arround in awe till 10 when the gates to Huanupichu opened when we started another gueling climb to the top. This climb seemed a little easyer for some reason and reach the top in no time. What a view, you can see the intire machu pichu ruin along with the inca trail cut across the mountain.

Huanupichu is crazy, you look at a stone and cant imagine how anyone could have got it there. That one picture of Sage laying in the dirt looking down over the edge is incredable. The pitures dont realy show it but that is a cliff that is over 1km tall!!! and somehow there is a little rock wall along to the top of the cliff. It was terrifying yet amazing.

After we were done browzing Huanupichu we desided to go check out the "great cave" and there was a trail that went down the back side of Huanupichu that apparently went to this so called great cave. After about a hour of walking down and down we were getting a little nervous. Finaly after alot of downhill walking (very hard on the knees) we got to the cave. It was cool and there were even a few other people there wich was exciting since we handnt seen anyone for about an hour of wandering through the jungle. The only problem was that we were exhausted and the hike from the cave back to machu pichu was over an hour!!!! This was hell and just about killed us.

After reaching Machu Pichu completly exhausted and out of water, we recharged and headed for the inca drawbridge. A nice flat walk to a cool little structure built to try to stop intruders from getting to machu pichu. There we ate some palta sandwiches and decided it was time to head back to home base. It was raining at this point and the walk sown to the valley floor seemed like a very long way, but once we got going it was alright and we made it just after dark. We then hit the hot springs for a quick dip in the pools before the power went out and we were sitting in the for some reason, draining pools.

The next moring we headed back to Cuzco arround noon. We had a smaller van this time with AC and Sage sat in the front and had a way better journay. Jordan, Riley and I were in the back having a great time singing along to all the 80´s hits the driver had on his cds. Clare I sang the Rocky tune extra loud for you! We got to cuzco arround 9ish and hit McDonalds!!!!! Its exactly the same as canada, except they provide mayo in the pump beside the ketchup.

We stayed one more night in Cuzco and hit the bus terminal the next day to catch a bus to the coast and that we did. We wanted to go to a town called Pisco, but the bus never stoped there so we continued the 24 hours through to Lima, than grabed some KFC (crazy amount of fast food latley) and continuted a few more hours to Tortugas. It didnt say much about it in the book, but what it did say sounded nice. I supose sometime in the year this is a hip hapenin little town but definatly not at this time of year. We seemed to be the only people in the town and had to walk a few Kms to find and elderly lady to cook us some food.

Speaking of food the guy running this internet cafe seems to want to go and get some of that himself and is closing us down.... More to come. Along with editing.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Machu Pichu

You see hundreds of pictures of this place but none can do it justice. What an amazing day, exhausting but amazing. Them Incas sure hate flat ground! I spent most of my allowable time uploading photos so the story to go with them will have to wait. We had an awesome time and we are now heading for the coast to catch some rays and enjoy the ocean.

Here are the photos.....

http://s9.photobucket.com/albums/a55/slowring/South%20America/

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Cuzco Peru.

Jordan and Riley arrived safely and on time. The only set back was that the airline lost Jordans bag. I dremt that that had happened and some how it came true. He was smart tho and carried on what he needed to survive, money, a few magazines and his camera equipment. He was looking very sharp in the new alpaca sweater that he bought at the airport to try to stay warm. Riley got in about half an hour after Jordan and we jumped on a bus for Puno.

Puno is not the greatest place to be. Bolivia definatly got the nice side of lake Titicaca and puno got a dirty shore line littered with all sorts of crap and not a trout stand as far as the eye could see. Luckly Jordans bag was supposed to be in Juliaca the following day so we could pick it up on our way to Cuzco. Of course when we got there the guy had no idea what was going on a was not in the mood to help out much. He had the nerve that when we asked him a question he responded with "im working and your going to have to wait". This realy pissed me off so I went and sat down. We realy didnt get anything done at this stop except we told him that if the bag came to Juliaca that they need to send it to Cuzco where we were going to be.

We thought that Puno was a dump but its got nothing on Juliaca. What a dive, we were lucky to only have to spend a few hours there while we waited for our bus, but a few hours was a few to many. The dirtyest town we have been to yet on the trip. Smelled like there must have been a pig farm right in the city center and there were troffs (sp?) of god knows what kinda goo running all over town. One positive side of Juliaca is that Jordan got ahold of someone on the phone who had seen his bag a few hours ago and personaly put it on the plane to Lima where it was going to get transfered to Cuzco!!!!! Apparently his bag was still in L.A!!!!

The bus ride from Juliaca to Cuzco was great. It was night wich was a little lame since the mountains were spectacular, but thankfully it was a clear night with a big moon so we could see a little. Steep snowcaped peaks were everywhere on both sides of the road. The best part was that when it was time to sleep I headed for the back of the bus with my sleeping bag and pillow and sprawled out over 4 empty seats. I didnt get a whole lot of sleeping done due to the driver being in some sort of un sanctioned rally race but it was definatly the most comfortable I have ever been on a bus.

We got a wicked hostel in Cusco about 5 minuates from the central plazas. Its got the nicest shower I have had since I left home, Cable tv in the room (nice to watch some movies and relax), and a nice kitchen upstairs on the roof that we have made a few great meals in. At the market we can get all the fixins for a wicked stirfry and rice for about 40 canadian cents per person!!!!

Cuzco as "touristy" as it is had been alot of fun. Its nice to be in a beautiful clean city with lots of stuff going on and no reason to ever feel thretened. You can even walk arround here with the camera hanging arround your neck with no worries. Today we went a checked out some of the cathedrals arround town. They definatly know how to build them down here as they are the most amazing works of art I have ever seen. No idea how they could ever build something like that without the use of at least a trusty forklift.

Well we are heading up to Aguas Calientas tommorow morning at 7 to stay the night then the next day we head to Machu Pichu for sunrise till sun set!!! We are all realy pumped to finaly be going to see it in person so we can say "i've been there" when we see all the pictures EVERYWHERE.

Im sure there will be a wack of pictures to come within the next few days.

It for now. Orin

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

A few more Pictures

http://s9.photobucket.com/albums/a55/slowring/South%20America/

Puno Peru

La Paz for the second time was awesome. We met up with the crew, and were cruisin with 7 again. This time we were all staying at the same hostel in La Paz so we didnt have to worry about sneaking a few to the rooftop where we spent most of our time. Our friend Matt had to head to Uruguay on his 55 hour bus ride, so we said our farewells to him and sent him off. After Matt left we headed up to the top of the hill to watch a little wrestling! It was prety helarious, basicly it was amature WWF with a few woman tossed in to fight. They put on quite a show. We also went and saw Wolverine the movie! The movie is not up to par in my mind but it was fun to relax and watch a film.

There are thousands of little vans running arround La Paz and most of the populated areas of Bolivia that we have been. Its quite a sight. They just rip arround town, with usualy either a woman or child hanging out one of the windows just yelling where the bus is heading. Even the spanish speakers in the group usualy dont know what they are saying. The first step of getting to Peru is taking one of these buses to Tiwanaku. Tiwanaku is a ruin about 40kms from the Peru border. These ruins were a little lame but still neat to see. I got a few pictures that are posted!

We are traveling into Peru with Simon and Brendon. So the last night we were in La Paz we did a little partying before breaking up the crew. Some stayed out a little later than others and a few (Sage and Brendon) had a little trouble with our travels into Peru. Alot of resting on rocks was need by those two. I like to rub this in.

After Tiwanaku, we grabed another bus to the border. Filled out our little slips of paper, got our stamps and headed to find a bus for Puno. It was dark at this time and the boarder town was getting a little sketchy. Simon is quite the spanish talker and managed to get us the last "four" seats on the bus. Four seats meaning, 3 seats and Orin sitting on the center console, with the driver on my left, the stick shift where my left leg would have liked to have been and two Peruvian women on my right. Luckly it was only 2.5 hours and it wasn´t to to painful.

The bus stations are always in the creepy areas of town for some reason, but we were all exhausted and desided to grab the closest hostel. After seeing the first hostal sign we moved on the the second hostel and went for it. It was prety dirty and shitty but we desided to get some sleep and find a new place in the morning. We went out and got some cash, ate some chicken then went to bed.

This morning we found a beautiful hostel in the nice part of town and are very happy about it. We cruised town and found a terrible place to eat! Simon is extremly cheap and hates spending more than a dollar on anything. We may have to split up for meals since Sage and I like to feel good during and after eatting. We did find the donut shop on our travels, and I very much enjoyed one of them.

Anyway, Jordan and Riley should be in flight as we speak on there way. Sage and I have got a room for all of us and are heading the hour north tommorow morning at 6!!!! to go and pick them up. I cant believe that they are here already, this means we have a mere 6 weeks left of slacking off. All tho we are so pumped to see some fimiliar faces indeed.
Hope you all are enjoying spring.
Orin

Friday, May 1, 2009

Copa Copacabana

La Paz was great. We met some great people at our hostel and the hostel next to us. There is Kate, Matt and yet another Matt from New York and Brendon from New Zeland. We all had a great time together on saturday night and sunday. So much fun infact, that we decided on sunday night we would head out to Copacabana with Simon and the others. The bus ride out was only 3 hours but the bus was made for children only and I had to play some musical chairs so I could ferel my ass again.

Copacabana is a wicked little town. Its right on lake Titicaca and the lake goes as far as the eye can see from almost everywhere in town. We rented the intire top floor of a hostel for all 7 of us at a hefty 2 canadian dollars a night including breakfast! Its great, its just a huge room so we are all "camping" in one corner. All of us have been having a blast and eatting a lot of fresh trout. It seems to be quite the staple arround the lake and they sure know how to cook it up. A little hut (number 9) down by the lake was recomended to us and its absolutly out of this world delish. 4 canadian for a whole trout, rice, big thick french frys and its all smothered in a sweet onion, pepper and tomato topping. This will be the reason we may never leave.

We ran into Alex and Catherine (from qubec) randomly on the street and decided to head to Isle de Sol (island of the sun) with them. Being the "hard core" hikers that we are. We decided to do the 17 km hike out of Copacabana threw some small villages to a very small village where we could hire a small boat to take us to the island. As opposed to taking the big boat right from Copacabana. The hike was awesome, it took us through some cool little villages that all seemed to be in the middle of a potato harvest. The women out here are crazy they work so hard and cary HUGE sacs of potatos on there backs wearing little leather shoes and full on dreses!

We got to the village on the island at dark after checking out a Inca ruin that is on the southern tip of the island. Sage and I got quite a start when as soon as we walked into the dark room of the ruin a swallow freaked and bailed out right beside us. The last part of the hike was quite trecherous as we had to gain quite alot of elevation. After some huffing and puffing we finaly found an beautiful hostel with absolutly amazing views of the lake, La Paz mountain and Isle de Luna. Thanks Pam.

We spend most of our time on the island relaxing on the grassy slopes between little terrised fields and donkeys. Donkeys seem to do everything on this island. There are no roads or motorized vehicles of any sort, just donkeys carying everything everywhere. Including water to the top of the hill for everyone to use. Its a very peacefull life on the island with nothing much besides farms. The trout is not as good as Copacabana and the runing packs of sheep are sketchy. All and all a great time.

We grabed the morning ferry back to Copa today, mostly for the trout but also to see if we could meet up with the others before they left. Luckly as we jumped off the boat and headed for number 9 trout hut, all the others were heading to the exact same place. Just wanted to get in one more trout before going back to La Paz. We enjoyed a beauty with them, said our farewells for one more night as we are staying here and meeting them in La Paz tommorow.

It has been a very peacefull last few days spent on the lake. La Paz should be fun for the weekend, then we are heading to Tiwanaco to see some ruins on our way to Puno to meet jordan.
6 more days! Congradulations Mom are all you motorcycling achivements! cant wait to ride with you as soon as I get home.
It for now. Orin

Friday, April 24, 2009

PICTURES!!!

Well after a little bit of a struggle I now have 100 pictures for you to look through!!!
The pictures loaded are from Iguazu Falls and our jeep trip.
Here is a link to my photobucket page where they are hosted. Enjoy.

http://s9.photobucket.com/albums/a55/slowring/

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

La Paz

Well we made it, and I'm tempted to say barely, but we made it. We left Tupiza arround 11... Good thing we were up at 8 ready to leave at 8:30 or 9. I suppose we are going to have to get used to "Bolivia time". Our ride was a nice Toyota Landcruiser with two captins chairs up front, and two sets of benches in the back, a roof rack with our bags, food and three barrels of fuel. Looked exactly like the blue barrels that farm chemicals come in just on a smaller scale. Not sure they were gasoline approved but all the rigs seemed to have the same. Since Sage and I did the most waiting for the others we opted to grab the more comfortable first bench seat. We went about 75 feet where we stoped for about half an hour. God only knows what for, but after that we were FINALY off.

We headed up a dry river bed into the hills where we saw some wild erosion formations, including a little road erosion where we got a little puckered up for the first of many times. About 30 minutes into the trip our Toyota died, but luckly after a little kicking of the fuel tank and wiggling some shit under the hood we were off and running. All our guide had to say was "no problem, no problem". We bounced along for another few hours through desert until it was lunch time. We stoped at a little mud hut in the middle of knowhere and had some wicked sandwiches with sheep and lamas running arround in and out of the hut! It was a long day, as we covered 350kms of dirt. When we got to the village where we were going to spend the night our driver didn´t seem to be able to find the hostel. After some sitting in the dark our driver came back and led us through a gate, where we ate a delicious diner and got a little sleep. We all definatly felt a little ill. Im guessing it had something to do with the hours of bouncing around and the fact that we were at 4200 meters elevation.

The second day we finally decided to take our altitude pills. I Don´t know why it took us so long to start, but we figured that it was time to use a little modern medicine along with chewing on coca leaves. This greatly inproved the way we felt, but our guide pedro didnt seem to happy that we had to stop ever 5 minuates to pee. One of the side effects! I suppose that side effect is better than the temporary blindness! We set out around 6 in the morning and the first thing we found was on old Spanish ruin built in 1500. This place was really cool. It was an old mining town and everything was built completly of stone. As soon as we stopped we all scattered to see what we could find. I headed into the old church, then into one of the larger buildings. I think got completly creeped out when I found the graveyard! Bones included!

We continued bouncing through the desert where we saw a few lakes (bigger versions of stinky lake). Finally standing on the edge of one of the lakes we saw a few flamingos! No idea that flamingos live in the desert. They are quite the birds, looking like their legs could snap at any moment. We also drove by a lake that is full of borax that they mine out and sell as soap. We finaly arrived to the "hot springs" for lunch. Unfortunatly every other jeep in Bolivia was there as well. The small hot spring pool was completly packed! We opted to eat lunch before taking a dip, this was an extremly good choice since when Sage and I went down to the water we were the only ones there! It was realy nice to get into some hot water after bouncing around in a dry dusty jeep for a few days.

After lunch we went and checked out a volcano, and a few other lakes, then headed to the highest part of our trip at 5000 meters to see the geysers! We all seemed to be expecting huge amounts of water flying out of the ground, but it turned out to be more like a witches pot mixing up some sort of brew. Huge puddles of mud just bubbled and spat everywhere, and hot air seeping from the ground with amazing pressure. After our "10 minutes we were off to the hostel. I swear the only english Pedro could say was, Hello, 10 Minutes, Pictures and GO! and he really liked the word GO! We ran out of gas about 300 feet from the hostel, but after the toyota drank a blue barrel of fuel we were up and running.

The third day was all lakes. The first one being the Red lake that was absolutly packed with flamingos!!! Sage and I spent well over our 10 minutes here taking photos of the odd looking birds. But of course we were called back to the toyota by the horn and forced to move on. We did ALOT of driving on the thrid day and didn´t get to see much except desert. We did stop at the stone tree, wich is a rock that was cut by water, a long long time ago to take the shape of a tree.
Pictures are needed to describe this work of art, so you will just have to wait, or maybe not if this computer cooperates like I´m hoping it will! We did finally get to see some salt on the thrid day and we headed across a little section to get to our hostel that was built completly of salt. Salt beds, salt tables and even salt floors. It was actually the nicest place we stayed on our whole journey.

We were up early the next mornign to head to the flats to watch the sun rise. This was definatly a different area than we had been to the third day. Salt for miles! It was incredible, and as the sun came up our shadows must have been 50 feet tall. There was nothing for miles. We got some great sunrise photos then headed to an island for breakfast. Our guide didn´t seem to enjoy telling us much, but luckly in the other group there was a guy named Simon who seemed to get along with his guide very well. He was the one who told us all of the interesting facts. The most amazing facts were that the salt was 10 meters deep on most of the flats and in the middle of the salt lake the salt was over 150 meters deep! The island was realy cool the intire thing was coral from 40,000 years ago when the salt flats was an ocean. And it was covered in Cactus and all sorts of wild rock formations that had to have been made by water. Standing on the top of the island you could look for miles, only to see a white landscape with a few other islands here and there. After a tasty breakfast we drove for some time to where we could only see salt, no islands or land. These salt flats are 12,000 square kms, so I guess that´s not too hard to do. There were also wild holes in the salt where water was showing. Apparently quite a few jeeps fall into these water holes and have quite a bit of trouble getting out. Luckly Pedro was on his toes and led us around them all, though he let us all take turns driving, which was lots of fun and we managed to avoid them as well. Taking photos on the salt was fun since there´s no depth of field and you can make some cool pictures.

We then came into the town of Uyuni all a little relieved to see a little pavement and civilization. We had one more stop to make on the tour which may have been one of my favorites of the trip. It was called the locomotive graveyard. It was just a few lines of old old locomotives that seemed to have been parked there for hundreds of years. Just piles of rust everywhere. Some of the trains were buried a few feet into the ground. We spent quite a bit of time here, gathering some really neat pictures, and climbing around on the old hunks of iron. Pedro finally got a little anxious and started blaring the horn for us to return. We all jumped into he toyota and headed for town. None of us had paid for our trip yet so he took us to the only ATM in town. Just as I somehow had figured it was closed for maitenance and we had to wait about 40 minutes on the sidewalk for it to open up so we could pay poor Pedro who I can only imagine just wanted to go home and take a shower.

We met up with Simon and a few others from the trip at the ATM and decided to try to get to La Paz that night, since we realy didn´t want to spend any time in Uyuni. Very very touristly town, with absolutly nothing to do except explore that salt, wich we had just finished doing. We found a bus that left in a few hours and got the last 7 seats. Yes we had a crew of 7. 4 Milasians, Simon our spanish speaking "guide" and the 2 canadians Sage and Orin. We grabbed a little dinner and hit the very slow internet cafe to do a little networking.

The bus ride was a little crazy. We had a grandma beside us with 2 small children probably 6 and 1. And this bus ride was no place for children. The bus was packed and freezing, and Sage and I woke up a few times in mid air as the bus flew over some huge bumps. Most of the ride was dirt and washboard like you wouldn`t believe. They seemed to give blankets to everyone except for us. After a little bartering with the driver he gave Sage and I one to share. Let´s just say we spent the next 11 hours of our lives freezing our asses off. Amazing how cold it gets here at night. It was definately a lesson learned and we won´t be traveling without the hot core again. A few times during the trip the bus stopped for bathroom breaks, where the grandma would jump off the bus in no shoes, leaving myself to tend to her crying baby. She was CRAZY!

After that wild night we were very excited to see the city. I had no idea what to expect in La Paz, but we found a HUGE city built on a very steep mountain side at 4000 meters. Just walking up the street to grab some food takes it right out of you. We talked to a girl at the bus station who reccomended a hostel, so we headed for it and crashed as soon as the man opened the door to our room. Today we hit a few local markets and got our first taste of La Paz. We went to a truly wild market this morning called the "mercado negro" for those of you who lack a little spanish that would be the black market, wierd. There was anything you could ever want for sale there. Realy creepy looking food, old ladies with tables stuffed with tools, nuts and bolts, all sorts of rubber seals????, and god knows what else. We did hapen to find a UNO card set and are excited to branch out our 2 known card games. Later this afternoon we went to the witches market and enjoyed picking up some true Bolivian woven goods.

We are planing to stay in La Paz for a few more days, then hopefully meet up with Simon and head north into the jungle to do a little wildlife watching! Looking forward to seeing some gators!!!! We are having a great time in Bolivia and are looking forward to our travels north. Well maybe just being north. I´m not particularly keen on these bus rides. We have it worked out now that we shouldn´t have to spend more than 5 hours on the bus at a time. This is good news.
Im going to attempt putting up some photos now, so wish me luck!!!

Orin

Friday, April 17, 2009

Tupiza Bolivia!

Well we made it, It was a little bumpy but we are in Bolivia now and loving it. Iguazu falls was amazing. We got a firly early start but were distracted my the hostels delicious breakfast. Definatly the best breakfast we have had yet at any hostel, or realy anywhere for that matter. The maid must have been there bright and early making a fresh batch of medialunas (delicious mini really dense croissants). I must have ate 10, or mabie a few more.

The falls are absolutly huge. Unfortunatly it was easter weekend so it was a zoo out there. Had to wait in a little line just to get a good view, but when you did it was just amazing. The water at the top of the falls must be half a mile wide so it spreads out realy far. The main falls, named Devils Throat catches about half the water and tosses it off the U shaped cliff. The mist just soaks you instantly when the wind is right. So after snapping a few pictures, we headed to check out where the other quarter mile wide river goes. Turns out it splits into about 20 other falls that can be seen from really well made viewing areas. I found these falls more beautiful than the Devils Throat. There was water running down the cliffs everwhere and so much green green grass clinging to the walls under the water it turned the water to a foam. I could try to explain the falls for pages but its really inexplicable place. Hope that some of our 350 pictures (that we slimmed down to about 150) will do it some justice.

We were a little stupid again and didnt but bus tickets out of Iguazu for the day we wanted. Luckly this time we only had to wait one day and it turned out great. We headed back up to the falls tp try out the swimming area. It was a little sad since the little area they had roped off for swimming in the huge river (below the falls) was like swimming in the back of a pickup truck. We figured that we could sneak out a little but that just wasnt happening. There was a poor kid on shore trying to keep people with the roped area. His wistle blew costantly. Sage and I even moved the ropes outwards when he wasnt looking, but before long he was waist deep in water moving the anchor points back twards shore. Shitty deal, but we delt with it and had a great day.

The bus ride to Salta was a little tedious. There were no Cama (big comfly seated) buses, so we had to opt for the more cramped up ride. Definatly the worst bus ride yet. The fact that it was 23 hours probly didnt help. We got to Salta in the late morning and headed for the campsite, wich we had read in our guide book had a huge swimming pool! When we got there we were absolutly blown away by the size of the pool it was probly between 5 and 7 ACRES! Unfortunatly I dont think it has had water in it for a few years. Very very lame. We grabed a campsite and got some stretched out sleep.

Salta was a nice city about the size of Kelowna. We did a little cruising arround on foot and found a realy cool metal art exibit. A bunch of metal hens and roosters made out of scrap. Lots of forks and knives and even a motorcycle head and a few valves here and there. There was also a Gondola that went up the mountain in the middle of town. I have never gone on any type of ski lift that went this high up. It was a little scary actualy. The view from the top was quite worth the little scare, and we hung arround up there for a while and got some pictures as the sun went down. Then headed to the bus station to get our tickets to Bolivia the next day.

It was a nice bus ride to the bolivian border. We had front row seats in the top of a double decker bus so the view was nice, we even got to see the sunrise! It was 7 hours to the boarder and it went by in a flash. The landscape was very green at first but as we climbed through the grass covered mountains we broke out into a desert with alot of wild rock formations and cactus everywhere! I happened to catch a glimpse of the summit sign that rear 3890 meters. I could definatly notice that I was a little short of breath. Especialy when we had to walk the last mile into town since they were sealing the last bit of the road with tar. I was a little upset till I saw all the elderly carrying as much weight as I, but tied on their backs in woven blankets. We got right through the boarder without a second look and we were in.

Bolivia has been quite a bit of a shock since its quite a bit poorer than any other country we have been to so far. The roads are rough and the buses are shit. But most of the people are very nice and willing to lend a hand. The clothing here is very cool, the women all wear these really elaberate dresses and sweaters with tiny little leather shoes. I have been trying to convince Sage to pick up a full suite but so far she hasent gone for it. Mabie by the time we leave. We arrove to Villazon then caught a bus to Tupiza where we are now. Sage and I are both feeling a little wierd due to what we believe is malaria pills and probly the altitude. Tupiza is at about 3500 meters and you can definatly feel it. We are staying in a nice hostel wich offers the 4 day jeep tours that visit all the attractions in southwestern Bolivia and ends up in Uyuni. Where we will grab a bus to La Paz and base probly the next 2 weeks there. Venturing out on a a couple 2 or 3 day trips to some national parks.

We are really excited about the jeep trip and have heard exelent reviews about the company we are using. Hopefully all will go well. Its just under 3 weeks till Jordan and Riley arrive and we are getting more and more excited to see them. Going to be great to see some familiar faces. I imagine things are warming up in Canada now and I hope you are all out enjoying the hopefully nice weather.
Orin

Friday, April 10, 2009

Iguazu Falls

Well im sorry to all for my weak attempt at my previous entry. I realy didnt feel like writing it so it got a little rushed. Just ask me about that part of the trip when you see me and I will tell you all about it. Our layover on Santiago went by prety quick. We got the cheapest meal yet in the food court. It was a little salty but not a bad plate of food. Our bus left arround 10:30 and we were off. I was a little upset that it was a night bus because we were crossing the andes through a very high pass that I wanted to see, but thats not the way it worked out, oh well. We did see a little by moonlight of a big hydro dam and some very very steep roads, but that was about all of it. Again we had a little trouble with our avocatos crossing boarders. Our problem this time is we just couldnt eat them fast enough. So we had to toss two beauties that we had been ripining for a week. Sad day for all. Other than that crossing the boarder was a breeze and we awoke in the Mendoza bus terminal arround 5 in the morning, After hitting 7 hostels with a girl taging along from the bus, we finaly found a room. Of course it was arround 6am, and check in time was 11 so we had some time to kill. So I spent that time sleeping (since I cant seem to on the bus) on 3 bean bag chairs sprawled out across the floor. Good recipe for a sore back. I was awoke by Sage bringing me some breakfast from the kitchen. I quickly wiped the dool from my beard and ate some toast. Sage had already been chatting with an american couple who had come from where we were going so we did a little brain picking then headed to our room.

Later that afternoon we set out for a bit of a walk. We hapened to stumble into a cigar shop that had cards for sale in the window. And actual cards with 52 cards in the deck as apposed to "spanish cards" with 32. So we finaly had cards and we headed to the park to play some games. While playing a some cards Sage spotted a few girls walking by with ice cream. I stare and bikes and Sage stares at ice cream, or mabie it was the girls. Anyway we set out to find some frozen goods for ourselves. We found a nice looking place on the way back to the hostel and had tip top service. This kid was handing out samples of all the special kinds that are not even on the menu yet. And after about 20 minuates of trying flavors and trying to deside between 50 different types we were on our way back to the hostel for dinner. We were a little late by the time we were hungry enough to start thinking about dinner after all that ice cream. And everything was closed so we ended up ordering some pizza, wich arrove in a speedy fasion on the rear of a motorcycle. Luckly we picked a winner from the list and got a pizza that was delicious compared to the other guys at the hostel that were supprised by there entire pizza being covered in a cool layer of shitty ham. That morning we had made plans to hit the town with the two americans. Unfortuanatly they had there passporsts, cash, bank cards and all but one soon to be maxed credit card stolen from the bus station. Right out of her bag while it was on her back! Needless to say they wernt exactly in the mood to party. So Sage and I bought them a litre of beer, sat and drank it with them, then took off with two eatern europeans. Odd few they were.

Out on the main drag of town we sat waiting for a cab, you can usualy see at least three cabs at all times but on this night there were none. The one that finaly stoped, wouldnt allow us in the car and continued to tell us that the taxis were on strike that night. After a little research we learned that someone had shot and killed a taxi driver earlyer that night while robbing him, and that the taxis were not working and had blocked off strees with there cars as a sign of protest. Apparently abuse on taxi drives is quite frequent in Mendoza over the parst few years. We desided that the night was prety much a bust, and as we were heading back to the hostel a man pulled up in a car and asked us were we needed to go. We told him and before we knew it we were off. He was a smart man, whenever the taxis go on strike, he just takes his car out and runs his own little taxi service. Bet he made a bunch of money that night as there were people everywhere trying to get cabs. We got to Villanueva street prety late but there were still alot of people out. We did a loser lap and grabed a table outside of some pub, ordered a torpedo of beer. (big chilled tube that sits on the table and you can pour out your desired amount over the night)
They party a little different in Mendoza than we do in Canada, everyone just kinda sits arround at tables in there little groups and dosent talk to anyone else. So we did just that till we got one of the tool tables and team Canada dominated team Europe. We headed home arround 4am, and the way home worked out even better than the way there. We stoped in a hostel on the street to ask about the cab situation and a guy in there said he was heading that way "ish" and offered us a ride. He had lived in Toronto for 4 years or so and had no trouble helping out his "fellow Canadians".

We lazed about the next day and the following day headed to the big park for a picnick. We spent most of the day by the "lake" (concrete hole in the ground full of dirty water) listening to music and relaxing. When we both had to pee realy bad we disided to move. We headed twards the Carosel, it was realy cool. Looked like it was from the 50's, the horses were all beatup along with the few cars and airplane that also spun arround the big center post. The music at this place was terible, it was so loud that it forced us to leave. We began walking back twards the city when we stubled upon the bigest fountain I have ever seen. We then grabed a cab to the top of the park where there is a huge monument that is on the back of there 5 peco bill. It was huge and sat right on the tip top of the highest mountain in mendoza. It was turning dark by the time we left and headed back to the hostel for some Lord of the Rings. That took us till 5am some how, and now a little pissed that we had become completley nocturnal we luckly were woken by the maid at 10 and had our asses kicked out of bed and onto a bus out twards wine country to do a bike tour. We rented some bike from Mr. Hugo and headed out into the counrty side. First we went to the wine museum, where they run a small winery aswell. It was cool to see all there old wine making equipment from way back. They have some of the first wine making equipment where they would just smash it all up with there feet in a stretched out cow hide. After some sips of there finest we took off south twards the olive farm. Sages eyes lit up when she read that on the list. Little did we know it was a 6 km ride down a stupidly busy road to get there. After a little diesel smoke inhalation we got there and got a quick but informative tour of how they make olive oil. Had an olive oil tasting with bread and sundries tomatos, then had our own lunch under an olive tree. About 20 minuates after we finished eating a lady came out and kicked us off the property and told us that we were not allowed to "picnick" there. We left without struggle and headed north now for Trapiche winery. The map that Mr. Hugo gave us was crap, even the cop on the moped couldnt figure it out. Anyway we ended up riding a few Km's to the middle of nowhere and by the time we got to the winery it was closed. Luckly the chocolate factory was still open so we slid in for a tasting. We were expecting a tour but apparently they dont do that, but they did do tastings. This one was a little wired, they give you a shot of chocolate liquer, a little basket of chocolate then give you 4 spoonfulls of random marmolade with nothing to put it on? We packed up the choclate that we couldnt eat (I didnt realy feel like eating and drinking chocolate after riding a bike for an hour) and headed to return the bikes, when we got there it seemed there was a party hapening, so we stayed for a while, and after falling into conversation with a gal that had a little to much to drink and loved vancouver just a little to much, we bailed.

Our bus to Cordoba left that night at 10:30, It was a prety easy 10 hours that put us there arround 8. We spoke with a couple from the Mendoza hostel that were on the same bus as us and they had said that they had some trouble finding a place to stay in Cordoba. This made Sage and I a little nervous so we disided to call arround a bit first to save some taxi time. Luckly the first place we called had room. Out infront of the "Cordoba Backpackers Hostel" there was a strictly motorcycle parking area. I have never seen this many bikes in one place. There was probly 125 bike all packed in to one side of the street, so tightly infact that you had to walk all the way arround the line to cross the road to where our room was. We only had one night in Cordoba with our bus leaving to Iguazu Falls the next day at noon. We did a little sleeping in the morning to catch up for the terrible sleep had in bus seats. We awoke just in time to catch the tour to Che Guevara's house in the town agacent to Cordoba. Apparently the family moved there because of the clean air since he had very bad asthma. It was prety cool to be in his house. They had alot of artifacts including the old Norton that him and his friend took over the Andes.

It was a 20 hour bus ride to where we are now. The longest trip yet, that actualy wasnt that bad. I got a little cramped up, with my legs falling asleep a few times and getting one realy bad charlie horse. We also were worried about getting a room in Iguazu since its Easter weekend and this place is realy busy apparently. But again we got lucky and the first place we went had room. So today we headed out the the park where the falls are, but not to see the falls. Our hostel manager told us that today is the busyest day of the year to see the falls, but there is a nice walk through the jungle where you may catch some wildlife. We desided this was a great idea, and headed off at about 1. Its a quick half hour bus ride to the park gate. We grabed a map and headed into the jungle. The first ant sighting was terifying. This is the jungle! and as we watched a ant the size of my pinky finger eat a big grasshopper, we realized we might be in for some crazy wildlife. We did see alot of wildlife, more butterflys than you can emagine, in all sorts of colours and sizes, lots of birds with huge tails and way to many spiders the size of my hand. The little jungle hike we were on was supposed to lead us to a smaller waterfall with a swimming hole at the bottom. When we got there we were both a little choked. The waterfall looked like me peeing off the roof, and the pool at the bottom was covered in flying red ants! We quickly ate a sandwich and headed for home. Just as we approched the road, we heard a big russle in the bushes and all of a sudden 15 or so ant eatters came barraling accross the trail noses down and digging up whatever they could find to eat. Luckly they crossed the trail right at a sharp tuen so they had to cross it twice. They were just rippin arround, climbing trees and jumping from tree to tree! They didnt seem to mind Sage and I that much and just continuted mulching everybug they could find. Some were almost the size of Dom with other baby ones that could alomst fit in your hand. All sizes seemed to have tails twice the length of there bodys tho. It was our first real forign wildlife sighting since we got here besides the penguins but that was at a reserve. I still didnt get to see any moneys but hopefully that will come soon. We are going to go back tommorow and catch the big falls, hopefully its a little more impresive than the water we saw today. We are going to be here for 2 more days then we are heading back east to Salta where we can head north to Bolivia.

Later Orin.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Santiago

The trip to Santiago went alright. Our bus left arround 2pm and the guy we rented our bikes from was "busy" apparently till 4 or so, but we realy neded to catch that bus. So after some running arround trying to use pay phones in this country, we decided to go talk to our campground owner. He was super nice and helped us by calling the guy and arranging that we leave them at the campsite. He even gave us our 10 thousand peco deposit back. (12 dollars) The bus cruised by the campground gate as soon as we got out there, so we jumped on and were on our way. The bus kinda sucked because it stops every few minuates to let people off and pick up more people, normal in a city bus but not a greyhound thats taking us 300 kms.

The minuate we got into Santiago we grabed another 2 hour bus to Valpariso. We got in at arround 10 or 11 and were met by an elderly woman who said she had some rooms in her house. We desided to take a look so she let us the 1/4 block to her house. There was the steepest set of stairs I have ever seen that led up to her place, and probly 100 feet of them. Once we tackled that, we were in. The place was a little cluttered with crap but on the whole prety clean. We asked her for some directions to a good place to grab a meal. The map was a little hazy and we had a little trouble finding the place but after some walking around in what felt like a sketchy city we found it. The windows in the front had the security doors pulled down already and the doors were yellow glass that we couldnt see through but we decided to poke our heads in. The place looked a little empty but we were craving some chinese food so we went for it. As we walked in we got a little more uncomfortable seeing that the place was completley empty. As we were looking at the menu Sage noticed a cockroach crawling on the table......the waitres showed us a different table.......we left quickly. A little turned off of eating at this point we settled for some cockroach free (hopefully) pizza. There were other people in there so we felt a little better about it.

The lady we were staying with, whos name is Sonja didnt have a spare key for us, wich we didnt find out untill after we had paid, but she left us her cell phone number to call her when we were comming back. She did leave us a lock and key for our room so we figured our stuff would atleast be safe even tho we might never get back to it. So after dinner we headed to the bus station to hopefully find her or give her a call. Luckly we found her prety quick cause she didnt seem to answer her cell phone. She led us back to the house while she told us, in terribly fast Chillian spanish (different from the others) that she had locked her keys in her house and had the police on the way to get in. GOD, Sage and I were worried now. Here it was midninght and we are sitting on the street with a crazy lady locked out of the house. She quickly ran off for some reason and told us to wait for the cops. The bottom 2 doors she left unlocked but the top one was the problem, I ran upstairs quickly to examine the door and figured that I could break it in 2 with a swift kick, if things got bad. We desided to call the cops ourselves and headed next door to a closing down shipping company. We spoke with the man and got him to call the police, I realy had no idea what was going on at this point and I figured if this thing wasnt resolved in 5 minuates I was kicking in the door and getting the hell out of here. The guy who called the cops for us came over and gave Sonja his keys, just then the cops showed up and Sonja and an officer went upstairs. While they were up there we asked the guy who gave his keys if this woman was crazy. He said shes very nice and gave us the thumbs up. The key worked somehow and we got in with all our stuff the way we left it. Our nerves cooled a little and we went to bed.

That was definatly some excitment that we didnt want to go through again, so we checked the book found a place and grabed a cab. Both feeling like mabie we should be leaving the city, we were blown away at how much nicer the northern part of the city was. It reminded me of San Fran but a little steeper and the building and roads a little tighter! The hostel was beautiful and gave us top notch service. We took off for a day of wandering arround the city enjoying its crazy architecture. There are few streets, but lots of little pasageways leading arround the city with old elevators on tracks to take you up and down the hills. We took alot of pictures and headed back to the hostel for some sleep. In the morning they had a great breakfast waiting for us, and after we headed for a museum. Im sure Sages blog will tell you more about the museum, but I can tell you it was a poets house, I think, whos name I will never remember.

We are out of Valparasio and killing our 5 hour layover in Santiago to catch the next bus to Mendoza, Argentina. Its about a 6 hour ride over the Andes so it should be exciting.
Orin.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Pacific Sighting Part 2

We got back to Lalos house arround 4 had a quick shower and jumped into bed for a little nap before our hot springs trip. The alarm went off at 6:30. So I quickly shut it off and went back to sleep as my body was in no shape at all to move. The next awakening was arround 12:30. A little to late to do much so I hit the pillow again and slept through till about 8 the next moring. Looks like im all caught up on sleep for the past few days of late nights and early mornings. That day we ate our terrible "fitness" cereal that someone, somehow talked me into purchasing. Never again! After choking down the box (there smaller here) we headed to the bus station to get some tickets to get outta Pucon and away from Lalo. Conveniently Lalo was for some reasom loafing arround the bus station. As soon as we steped in the door he started flabbing about us looking like zombies walking accross the parking lot. We told him where we were headed, then he sang the beach boys surfing safari for the next 10 miuates. Someone please kill this man!!! Anyway we got our info, rushed home and packed and got outta there before he could waddle home to see us off.

The next bus to Temuco left 15 miuates after we got to the bus station. So that worked out perfectly. It was a small bus with about 30 seats on it. About an hour after leaving the station with 7 of us on it we counted well over 50 people crammed on this tiny bus. Wierd how the only 1st world country we have visited cant afford a bit bigger bus. Luckly this time we had some tickets with seat numbers on them. It was about a 2 hour trip to Temuco where we grabbed our 8 hour ride to Rancagua. Busses here are very wierd, they just seem to drop you off wherever, but if you dont know where wherever is, sometimes it leaves you standing on the side of the highway at 10 at night. Luckly there was a little food stand just closing up with some nice people that hauled out there pay phone and made a quick call for us. This is just the begining of this night. We jumped in the cab and headed for the only hostel in the book. After about 10 minuates of flying through the city we came to a place that looked like knowone had been for years. Thanks lonley planet! The cab driver sayed he knew a place that was a little better. So he continued to drive us to a very fancy place that we could not afford. Then in broken english he told us of a place he knew that we could get a nice room for 14000 pecos. (about 20 bucks) we said sure and off we went like a hurd of turtles. On the way he told us in again very broken english that we got the place for 10 hours and it came with 2 free drinks. Well thats what we could understand anyway. A little worried we contiued. We drove by a place called the "Hotel Nevada" on the way. It had alot of neon and martini glasses on the sign, and Sage and I both looked at each other and chuckled. Arround the corner was where he was going to drop us off. This place looked realy sketchy. The Hotel Nevada may have had some neon, but this place had big hearts everywhere and looked like a dump. We told him that we didnt want to stay here. By this time it was probly 11:30 and we were both sick of being in this guys cab. We backed out of the driveway and went arround the corner to..........The Hotel Nevada! Sage and I were a little unsure about this place but he asured us it was great. A little creeped out Sage asked the driver is it was a sex hotel. He laughed a little then answered yes. Sage and I being a little worried about what the hell was going on told him that we wanted to leave. He again asured us that it was a good place and took us to one of the rooms. You dont even have to check in. All the rooms are unlocked and you just walk in. It was actualy a nice little room. With a few to many mirrors but hell we were tired and didnt want to go back accross town, so we told him we would take it. He quickly grabbed the phone on the wall and began speaking to whomever was on the other end. He stoped beiefly to ask us what drinks we wanted, then hung up and said "alright its done". Sage and I had no idea what we had gotten ourselves into. While we were arranging with the cab driver to pick us up at 10 the next morning there was a knock on the little cubby hole on one side of the room. Sage went over and was handed a tray with 2 drinks on it, some chocolate bars and the remote for the TV. She paid the woman 10500 pecos and the door closed and that was that. The cab driver then contiued to grab the room service menu and tell us what was good and what to stay away from. Seemed like he had been here a few to many times. Wierdest thing ever.

The cab driver showed up in the morning and took us to the hot spot for empanadas. (very good pastry things) then to the bus station to get a bus to Pichilemu. The surf town that we are now in, and loving. We got a nice campsite, in the yard of a very nice couple who have been taking very good care of us. He even took us in his car to the supermarket to get our food. We got to town in the late afternoon, and while setting up our tent realized that we again forgot to hang it to dry and now was starting to mold, very dissapointing. So we tossed it in the sink and scrubbed the hell out of it. We got it clean enough to live in, but our plans of selling it in boliva are not looking so good. We went for a little walk arround town and watched some huge waves break onto the beach. This is supposed to be a nice place to learn to surf but we definatly were in the wrong spot for that. This morning we got a little better orientated with the town and learned the good spots to learn and the spots to watch. The waves were huge again today and the learning spot couldnt handle the big waves and was just whitewash. So Sage and I rented some bicycles from a guy and headed 6kms south of town to watch the pros in action. These guys are crazy, they were surfing right off a real gnarly rock point where they would walk out as far as they could on the rocks, then hop into the water and paddle through these massive waves and strong currents to get out to where the waves are breaking nicely. Then ride them 600 meters are so and hop off and do it all over again. They make it look so easy out there.

We are hoping to get into the water tommorow to do a little surfing of our own. Hopefully the waves coperate for us. If not we are going to take off and head up to Santiago where we are going to go to Valparaisoand mabie try to get some better surf up there, we will see. The weather here is warmish but the water is still very cold, with a nice thick wetsuite it looks manageable. Hopefully things are warming up for you all in the north. I have recieved official word from Jordan that he will be flying into Peru and meeting us on the 7th of may along with Riley Johnson from summerland. Sage and I are both excited to have them along with us for a while.
Thats it for now.
Orin.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Pacific Sighting

We left Bariloche, Tuesday afternoon arround 3 and headed north for Juin de los Andes. The bus ride was about 4 hours, so it wasnt bad. We grabbed a taxi from the bus terminal to the campsite that we found in the lonley planet and set up camp. Finding that we forgot to dry our tent out in Baraloche since we had to roll it up wet in El Bolsen. Luckly it hadent been to long and the mold hadnt started yet and with a good brushing and some airing out seemed good as new. Juin was a nice small town set beside the river with alot of people fly fishing for trout all the way between Bariloche and Juin. We came specialy to Juin to see Parque Lanin, and the volcano that is in the park. We thought that it was just a short bus ride out to a nice national park, but it turned out to be 2 hours of mostly droping off locals that live in the park and the bus dropping us off at the end of the road beside a church in the absolute middle of knowhere. We wandered down to the lake and had some breakfast, hung out for a bit then desided to go check out a different spot. While we where walking back to the church to try to find somewhere to go we ran into a guy that was in the same situation as us except he had just come from where we were planning to go and he informed us that there was just a field with nothing. So we started the "1 km" walk to the beach. about 4 kms of hot dry gravel road later we arrived at the beach. With a nice view of the volcano we sat/slept for a few hours and soaked up a little sunshine in the mountains. We were expecting a little more from the park but everything was so spread out that we couldnt realy see much else. But it was definalty cool to see the huge volcano all covered in snow.

The next morning we had to catch the 6:30 bus, so we arranged a taxi to the bus station for 6. When I woke up 10 to 6 in the tent, still not packed, there was a bit of a panic. Luckly the taxi driver was nice and waited arround a bit for us to finish up packing again a very wet tent. At the bus terminal there was a guy that looked about our age wandering arround sipping a coffee. This gave Sage a definate reason to talk to him to find out where she could get a warm, cafinated beverage of her own. He sent her off across the street for coffee and he asked me if I had heard of anything exciting to do in Temuco, since he had a day to kill till he met his firend. I couldnt lie to the guy, since I had just read in the lonley planet about how shitty Temuco was and to only go there if you needed to catch another bus north. So after chatting with him for a bit he decided that he would jump off the bus with us in Pucon. He had just droped off his rental motorcycle that he had been traveling arround with in southern Argentina for the last 2 weeks. Sounded like quite the trip. The bus ride was a nice one winding though the andes between Argentina and Chille. We went through a huge forest fire site with lots of hot spots still burning up on the montain side. Getting out of Argentina was no problem, but we had a minor panic at the Chille side when we realized that we couldnt bring the 2 avocatos that were grown in Chille back to there home land. The bus driver had a little panic when we asked him about them but he just grabbed them from us and left them on the counter, kinda wierd.

We got into Pucon in the afternoon and had intentions to camp but after having our arms twisted by Mr. Lalo Bravo, we desided to stay at his hostel with Chris (the guy we met drinking coffee in Juin). Now Lalo was quite the character. He was a short, stocky local with absolute rubber gums. This guy talked the ear right off your head, and was more full of shit than anyone I have ever met. It all started with him saying "my place is right arround the corner, 2 and a half blocks" he offered to pay for us to take a cab but we all decided that after a fairly long bus ride a little walk wouldnt hurt. Quickly the 2.5 blocks turned into a 10 minuate hike arcoss town. Chris was a fairly whitty guy from the UK that had no problem telling Lalo what he thought about his measuremet abilitys. When we got to his steet he pointed out his hostel. "Thats my hostel, but it burnt down so you are going to be staying here, in my house" We all had a little chuckle and headded in. It was quite a nice place, and he seemed to have no peoblem moving his belongings so that Sage and I could have his room. Along with his picture of a half naked girl, magazine cut out of a motorcycle, and a stuffed panda the size of a volkswagen bug. So wierd, but atleast the bed was comfy. He made us some coffee and got us some bread and jam. Then continuted to talk untill we all just had to leave before someone hit him. He told us all about his life, and how he runs all the tourism in the town through his website. And how he runs the newspaper in town, even tho the only issue he could dig up for us to see was from febuary 2008 and consised of 8 pages, 4 of them being duplicates of the opposite page. So we left him to book our Volcano hiking tour and headed into town for a cheezeburger.

The exchange rate in Chille takes a bit to get your head arround its arround 600 pecos to the american dollar. So things like accomidation are arround 5000 a night and things like the vocano tour are 35000. Sounds wierd to say that and ice cream is 900 pecos. But we are used to it now and are droping thousands everywhere. We had some great cheezeburgers intown and headded to the bach to check it out. There we ran into a guy that Chris had met in Bariloche from New York who was chatting with a girl from Edmonton. We all sat arround and chatted for a bit then decided to go grab some beers. We sat on the roof top of the little resturant on the beach, and talked about mostly home but Chris and I could sneek in a little morotcycle chat here and there. Sage and I had to go at 8 that night and get our boots fitted for our volcano hike at 7 the next morning. After the fitting, we ran back to the hostel and had some dinner that Chris prepared for us, then headed back into town for some more beers with our little english speaking crew.

Lalo had promised us the night before that he would get us up at 6am sharp and have us some coffee ready. At 7 he knocked on our door and said "Im sorry guys I slept in, the car will be here in 5 minates to pick you up". Appaently Chris had kept him up all night snoring. Made our little morning rush worth it when we heard that. The car arrived and we jumped in and sped off twards the meeting place where we grabbed our gear, jumped in the van and headded up the mountain. It was quite a drive to the base of the volcano where we grabbed a old double ski chair up a short portion of the hike to save us a little time and energy. 2 guys in the group decided not to take the lift but Sage and I and both our guides went for it. When we got to the top one of the guides took Sage and I up the mountain for a head start. It was quite the climb and the guide seemed to be in a bit of a rush. We had a fair amount of grear on our backs and hiked for about an hour and a half to the glacier for our first break. Sage was having a little toruble with the pace that the guide had set. But she did realy well and pressed on to the glacier. We had a quick sandwich at the base of the glacer while we waited for the other 3 to meet us. After a little grub we straped on our crampons and headed up the face of the glacier on to the top and hiked for another hour or so to where we met the rock again. The guides were very pushy and seemed to be in a rush the whole way up. Rushing us all a little and realy taking the wind out of Sage. The guides insisted that she not continue past the glacier, but didnt expain very well why. She was tired but she figure that she could make it, but they just wouldnt let her go on. They desided that one guide would stay with her and the other would take us other 3 to the top. About 3 minuates into the climb I realized why they wouldnt let Sage come. The winds dam near blew us off the side of the mountain, and the only thing that somewhat resembled a trail was the rocks falling from the guilde ahead of me. Its was 50 minuates of climbing on my hands and knees on lava rock. I thought about 10 minuates in that there was no way that we where going to make it to the top. Most of the other groups had turned arround and headed down, but we pressed on. It almost everything I had to make it to the top of that volcano but it was worth it. Being on top was like being inside a tornato. The clouds were whizing arround the top at what looked like 100 miles an hour and just standing was a struggle. The guide gave us 5 minuates for pictures then drug us back down. I was a little dissapointed that we didnt get to see any lava, but the sound of it down in the pit was quite amazing. Crashing and cracking who knows what while stream and sulpher porued out and burned my nostrils. A little nasty but still quite cool. The way down was just as windy as the way up. It actualy put me onto my hands and knees a few times, and I had to pee so bad. That was quite a chore, I didnt even see it hit the ground. When I got back to where Sage was she was so cold that she could barely speak. We quickly tossed on our crampons and headed down the montain. Getting a little blood flowing in Sages veins got her wamer and got a smile back on her face. Once we got off the ice, we had another little break and ate another sandwich. Then it was a 45 minuate downhill run in a dust bowl of shale. It was defiatly alot better than going down the trail we came up, alot easyer on my knees. We all jumped in the van and nodded off till we were back in town.

The volcano hike was quite an experiance. I had some fun but im sure that Sages blog has a different opinion about it. Anyway we are now in a town called Pichilemu that is nicly placed on the Pacific ocean. Very nice to see again. Its late and im very tired so I will tell you all about the journey from the Pucon to hear probly tommorow.

Good Night.

Monday, March 23, 2009

White Water!

We are up in Bariloche now, and what a beautiful town it is. Its apparently one of the largest towns in "patagonia", and is full of touristy things to do. Its right on the Chile boarder and a huge lake, so im only sure that in summer this place is crazy. There is already alot of tourists here. We grabbed a cab from the bus depot to a hosel that Alex and Christine (our friends from Montreal that we met in El Chalten) recomended to us. It was in a tall appartment building on the 10th floor. The lobby of the building was beautiful, but as soon as we got in the elevator we were both thinking this might be our last stop. sketchy. We got to the top finaly and poked our heads arround the corner and at the end of a dark hallway the was the sign 1004 on the door. The hostel being called "Hostel 1004" we figured that was it. We rang the bell and the door opened to the most wild place I have ever seen. The whole front was glass overlooking the lake and some of the town, with tables and couches everywhere. A huge kitchen and what seemed like a great place to stay, of course they where full. So, back down the elevator from hell and across the street to where I am now, "The Backpackers Hostel" still quite a nice place. We dropped our things and headed out into the city to do some browsing. And just that we did. Grabbed some lunch, watched an outdoor free concert and relaxed.

Later last night we went on a journey to book a whitewater rafting adventure for today, after we went to a few places we found a guy that took our money, gave us a slip of paper and said his company was full, but he would find us one and they would pick us up at 9am. After we left we both figured we would never see that money again, no one would come to get us and the mans office would be empty in the morning. We were up at 8 had our breakfast, and for the first time since we have been here the company was early, a man came in the door at 5 to 9 and hauled us out to the van. We grabed a few more people and headed out the hour and a half drive to the launch. After some paved ruta 40 we bumped down a dirt road for about an hour that led us to a field with a nice little log cabin to one side. We could see from the van the breakfast spead waiting for us. We ate some bread and jam, drank some coffee then went to get suited. Within 10 minutes all 6 of us looked ridiculous. Mom, Dad and Jordan im sure you all know! Pictures are coming. We then drove another 10 minutes to the launch point, had our safety lesson and jumped in the boat.

We were with a few Argentinians who seemed like they had never seen a river before, let alone been sent down one in a rubber dingy. But after Sage and I got a good rhythm going for the boat they did alright. Except for one guy, just a wild man with a paddle. The river was a little small this time of year but it was so beautiful it made up for it. Ther water was so clear you could see every rock and log on the bottom. It flows down through a narrow canyon for 10 kms that took us about 2 hours to get through. There were 10 rapids with nice long slower sections in between for swimming. Quite cold swimming but swimming. The water was down arround 4 or 5 meters from its spring run-off level. Our guide was showing us some of the rocks that they cant even see in the summer, that now seemed huge. In one section of the canyon you can see where the water has cut huge funnels in the rocks from the whirlpools. Quite amazing, one of them was probly 15 feet deep with just a little hole in the bottom for water to come out. We had an absolute blast in the river, but when we came to the Chillean boarder we had to get out. We hiked up a huge hill out of the canyon. Luckly there where a few horses to carry out the boat! I couldnt believe these horses going up that steep of a hill. We crossed over the border on the trail up the hill and hit chile for the first time (for about 30 seconds). At the top the van was waiting with our dry clothes. We changed up and headed back to base camp. When we arrived, again we could see the meal before we went inside. This time it was quite a spread. Potato salad, regular salad, wine and a huge huge plate of BBQ steak, chorizo and chicken. We ate till we couldnt move, sat for a bit then headed to town.

Its was quite a day, and we had a hell of a good time. We are both hoping that we can do it again sometime on this trip. Everyone in the van slept most of the way home, except for me and the driver. (of course) I cant seem to sleep with passes like that happening on the highway! When we got back to the hostel we both just relaxed for a bit rubbing our shoulders from all that paddeling. Had showers and now here I am writing this. Tommorow we are heading north again, to Junin de los Andes, with the nearby national park lanin. That is home to a volcano! Should be awesome. Thats the update.
Later Orin.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

El Bolsen

Wow!
It has been way to long since I have writen on here, bad for you the reader. But even worse for me the memory man and typer. We got out of El Chalten on the night bus up route 40 to Los Antigous. It was about 14 hours of mostly dirt road north. It was a little grueling to be honest, but it was realy nice to make some miles north. We got into Los Antigous arround 3 in the afternoon and grabed a nice campsite on the outskirts of town. Had a little stretch out sleep and then headded into the town. Looks like it might be a striving community in summer but I think we where a little late to get the full feel of the town as it was a little empty. We got some grocerys and headded back to camp. We desided to leave the next day and try to make it to Trelew to see the Penguin reserve. We grabbed the 6am bus out of town the next morning and rode the 14 hours up to Trelew. Seemes long but it actualy wanst a bad day. I did alot of sleeping. In Trelew we tryed to rent a car to go to the campsite then down to the penguins the next day. But even in this country you must be 25 to rent a car. So we grabbed a spot in a hostel and figured we would take one of the tour busses down to the penguins. We had heard the hertz will rent to younger people so we got the hostel manager to call just to check. Success, they would have the car at the front door the next morning at 9. So we put some pictures on our blogs (finaly) and went to bed. (finaly)

In the morning we packed up and headded the 115kms south to the penguin reserve in our nice Volkswagen Gol (not Golf, just Gol) We got to the penguin reserve arround 11 and headded in. We walked about 50 feet before we came accross our first penguin. Walking and squaking its way along, easly 1 km from the ocean. Sage was soo concerened that she was headding to tell the park ranger that there was a lost dieing penguin walking arround out here, when we noticed a few other penguins standing arround. As we continued our walk we started seeing more and more penguins huddling under brush for shade. Then there where just hundreds of them everywhere. They are such helarious animals. There so curious and want to look at you just as much as you want to look at them. They walk right up to you and then put there head from side to side like a dog trying to figure out what you are. We walked a little further down to the water where we sat on the edge of a little cliff and watched them play in the water for a while. They are fast creatures in the water. It says that they will go up to 600kms away to find food for there young. It was so strange to see Guanacos (lama like creatures) wandering arround all these penguins sharing the countryside. After a few hours we where back in the Gol headding north for Gaiman. Its a Welsh community kinda in the middle of nowhere. It says in the book that its good for its all you can eat tea houses with traditional welsh goodies. Sage and I followed a number of large signs down a dirt road to a little mansion. The place was realy well kept and we where feeling a little out of place. As we approched the building there was a plack saying that the tea house had being visited by princess Diana in 1995!! There was a bunch of pictures just inside the door of her infront of the building. Starting to feel a little more underdressed in my cut off jean shorts and tee shirt. A little lady probly in her late 70´s early 80´s met us at the door with a smile and got us set up at a nice table. Then...the food came, plates FULL of sandwiches, cakes and all sorts of goodies with a big pot of tea. So Sage and I sat there for a few hours and worked away at this mountain. It was awesome in there, it felt exactly like Nana´s house. And the treats where very similar to what she used to make. We both left feeling a little sick from all the food but we felt like we needed to finsh what they put infront of us since she seemed quite dissapointed that we didnt want more. After we left we went for a nice drive through the country side back to Trelew where we spent some time hanging arround waiting for the guys to come pick up the car. We then whiped up a salad in the bus station while we waited for our bus to come. Hopped on at 10:45 and headded the 12 hours to El Bolsen.

We are now in El Bolsen having a wonderfull time relaxing and just enjoying the country side. Its a realy nice town with a large market a few times a week. We went today and got some delish waffles with blackberries, strawberries and rasberries with whipcream and powdered sugar.....drool. We are camping here in a nice little campsite a short walk out of town. We have seen quite a few people here that we saw in El Chalten. Its kinda funny how everyone takes the same routes. Today we went out to a waterfall about 10kms outside of town. Nice little spot, not alot of water but quite a tumble down the rocks. We where there for a few hours and had some lunch and just relaxed. Nice thing to do after soo much bussing. But tommorow we head north again. Its only 2 hours so it shouldnt be to bad. We are headding to Baraloche, where we are going to do some more hiking and mountain watching!

Pam, I suppose that a ¨bin trailer loaded¨ might be a bit of a farm orientated measuring device, but i sppose its equal to arround 6 volkswagen jettas. ¨Faulder talk¨ . And im just not sure why my blog is lacking the descriptive language that Sages holds. Sometimes I think shes fit for a life at sea.

Hope to hear some stuff from you guys in the comments section. Miss you all very much.
See You Soonish!
Orin

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Cool Motocycle picture from Uruguay.

The intire town of Cabo Polonia.

A nice old truck!

Sage on her river crossing!

The mighty Fitz Roy peaking out. (camera died on this picture)

finaly a few pictures

The bikes here are crazy! My favorite to date....The WINNER

Cabo Polonia sunset.

The streets of Buenos Aires.

Lots of stray dogs down here. Always seeking shade.

Checkin out something....