Friday, December 25, 2009
Cerro Lopez 12/22/09
Tiffany wanted to go shopping and play onthe internet which I had no desire to do so I made alternate plans. Bus schedule in hand I headed out to catch a bus to the the trailhead at the bottom of a Mountain called Cerro Lopez. After a 45 min ride, I got there. The map I had turned out to be completely inacurate but I did OK anyway. I kept running into an oldert couplwe that is staying in our hostal. They are quite ther hikers for their ages and managed to catch up to me when I stopped to eat or when I couldn´t find the trail. They also had a much better map which helped.
The trail was mostly at about a 45 degree angle and braided quite a bit in places. Half way up was a waterfall fed by melting snow. Towards the top I started wlking on snow and heard water running underneath. Not sure how safe that was but I didn´t break through. At the top was a refugio- a surprisingly well equipped shelter with rooms to stay and food etc for hikers. The altitude is around 1600 meters. Not sure at the start but a ways down as you can see fro the pic. When there is less snow you can make it from one to the next and not need to bring a tent. This year has stayed relatively cold and a lot of the trails are closed still. So I sat at a table and ate my sandwich and orange and then headed back down. I decided to take the road that was presumably built to supply and build the refugio. After finding that it was goiung to take forever going that way, I jumped back on the trail when they came close. I entertained myself by running the rest of the way down. The trail conveniently had many little banked turns to check my speed.
At the bottom I had to kill some time until the next bus so I checked out a cemetery apparently built for mountain climbers and then headed to the bus stop. There were some Israely girls there also waiting. They said they only made it to ¨the beginning of the middle¨ because they partied too hard the night before. They had worked and saved and planned to travel in SA for a year.
Eventually, the bus came and we ate some Pizza that Tiff made with gluten free crust. I loves me some pizza.