This morning at 6:30, I went on a hike with Caley and her host family. I didn’t exactly know it would be a hike beforehand; I just knew we’d be walking to the laguna. All I knew was that our whole trip (getting there, swimming for a bit, and getting back home) would take about 3 hours.
Anyway, I was excited, because it’s my first full weekend here and I didn’t have any plans. When we got to the entrance point for the hike, we saw this sign, and we kind of chuckled because it said “Difficulty: high.”
It probably took about 40 minutes to get down to the laguna. We swam for a while and the water was FANTASTIC. The temperature was perfect, and I probably could have stayed there all day.
The hike back up was brutal. I’d worn a long-sleeved, dri-fit shirt (mistake #1, but I’m trying to avoid showing much skin until I’ve integrated in the community a little more) that I had to take off within the first few minutes. So I hiked in my swimsuit and shorts.
It’s about 4 kilometers down and 4 back up. That doesn’t seem like much, but the incline was brutal. I couldn’t tell if my hair was drenched from swimming or from sudor (spoiler alert: SO MUCH SWEAT.) But thank God for sweat, because when the wind picked up, it felt like heaven.
When we got to the top, I felt like we’d accomplished a Herculean task. But then we had to walk even more to get to Caterina to get something to drink and find a mototaxi. My bottle of orange soda cost like $1.50, which is an absurdly high price, but we were in a tourist trap and I would have died without it, so I paid.
I’m exhausted and hungry (did I mention that I forgot to grab my water bottle on the way out of my house? I did this hike with only two small sips of Caley’s water to sustain me. How am I alive?)
All that said, I’m glad I did this, I’d recommend it to a friend, and I’d do it again (but with a tank top and some agua.) 5/5 stars.