Sunday, November 4, 2018

The Beautiful Colours of Rainbow Mountain and Red Valley

Autumn time change: One extra hour of sleep? More like stay up one extra hour eating M&M's while binge watching TV. For those that think Anita and I are succeeding at life with our seemingly endless adventures, this is what happens when we have nothing to do. :(

Anyways, I wanted to share with you photos from our hike last month to 5200m high Rainbow Mountain, or as one friend described it, 'the stripey mountain!' See the photos, and you'll agree how accurate that description is. The vibrant coloured striations are apparently due to different concentrated bands of mineral content.

To get here, we hopped a shuttle from Cusco at 2:15am and made our way along a narrow road so bumpy and winding that I was one turn away from barfing up my breakfast (fortunately when I was about to ralph, we arrived at the trailhead). The crisp dawn air quickly reversed any ill effects, but because we had only arrived a day earlier in Peru without time to acclimatize, altitude sickness quickly felled one in our group who had come from nearly sea level. Fortunately, we were able to call upon the Andes version of Uber (a horse) to take her up, while the rest of us trekked. From Rainbow Mountain, we would also extend our day hiking into beautiful Red Valley for some more gorgeous vistas of mineral rich sedimentary rock.

Okay, now go enjoy your 25 hour Sunday.

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Beautiful morning light of the sun slowly rising, around 6:30am.

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We were the first group on the trek.

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Andean Uber.

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At the top, we were greeted by views of this striking stripey mountain.

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Our guide showed us photos from a week prior, when it was completely snow covered. So despite the altitude sickness, we really lucked out.

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The beautiful landscape we hiked to get to Rainbow Mountain.

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Tourist trap photo of 'local person with llamas'. I regret nothing.

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A sweeping pano of Red Valley.

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