Ecuador Albums 2001
Chiriboga

My 2001 initiation into hiking was a trip to a wilderness area near the town of Chiriboga. Our trip began with a drive through the cloudforests above Quito and down into rainforest valleys marked by Dr. Seuss trees, wild orchids, and other diverse flora and fauna. Then we found a guide for our hike beyond the village.

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Miguelito's cousins Nelson and Daniel stand with him at an overlook where we stop for a picnic on the way to Chiriboga.

Miguelito prepares to join Sylvana, cousin number three, for the second half of the drive. The rest of us rode in the warmth of the truck.

Miguel's Aunt Live and Miguelito pick their way along the trail.

Local people who walk this trail wear Wellingtons — high rubber boots to keep their feet dry. Oh well. Tennis shoes are washable.

Our guide draws Sangre de Drago from a tree along the way. Dragon Blood is said to remove freckles.

We arrive at our destination for the day's hike...

...but the trail goes on.

Picnic over and bodies rested, we prepare for the trek back to Chiriboga.

On returning to the village, Nelson and Daniel have the dubious honor of changing a flat tire...

...while the rest of us wait at the town's store...

...and wait, but some of us are happy enough to just sit and rest.

Live and Sylvana take advantage of the opportunity for a mother-daughter moment.

On the way back to Quito...

...the clouds begin to move in...

...bringing an ethereal aspect to the landscape...

...until the valley is filled with an ocean of white.

 

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