Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Peru & Ecuador were terrific!

Peru Andes
Hi, I'm back from a three week tour with Overseas Adventure Travel to the heights of Peru including Cuzco and Machu Piccho, and the depths of Ecuador - the Galapagos Islands.. but also the trip included lots of high altitudes in Ecuador too, including up to 16,000 feet at the Chimborozo Volcano. Despite the very long flights getting there via Miami, I did survive it all. I had been worried about altitude sickness going to 11,000 feet in Peru, so took some Diamox and was fine with the couple days of some aclimatization. Then, even with the five days at sea level at the Galapagos, I was OK to go back up to high altitude at Quito and the volcanoes in Ecuador after that.
To describe the best parts is difficult as the entire experience was so iteresting and eventful. Maybe the icing on the cake was that I was able to speak/understand many of the people because my Spanish conversation ability increases with every trip I take south of the border.

I think I was most proud that I climbed a trail above the Machu Picchu ruins, part of the fabled Inca Trail to the ruins called Inti Punku.... an amazing and high vantage point which led us past many llamas grazing on the mountain side. Interesting that the discoverer of the Machu Picchu, in 1912, was Hiram Bingham, born in Hawaii, grandson of the missionaries.

I was surprised to get on the hotel elevator in Cuzco, Peru, and saw a doctor with "Operation Smile" on his lab coat. He is from Albuquerque, NM, and said that he was on a local mission (to repair cleft lips and palates) which only needs doctors and anesthesiologists. Maybe someday I'll go on an Op Smile mission in Peru or Ecuador. Also, in Quito, Ecuador, I looked up the Ecuadorian doctor, Eduardo, that I met and worked with when I went to Haiti for the disaster relief surgeries in February. He graciously showed me all over Quito and had our photo taken at the Equator.

I've taken tons of photos and have been going through them. Here are a few.  Now to get back to genealogy!

Peru

Train to Machu Picchu
Llama at Machu Pichu

 
Donna at Machu Picchu
Peru
Peru potato baking

Ecuador: Eduardo and Donna at equator

Donna in Galapagos, Ecuador

Galapagos Tortoise















Ecuador, Chimborazo Volcano  -- cold

1 comment:

Angie said...

Dont you think Ecuador is the best place ever!??!
The las 2 years I did diferent Ecuador Galapagos tours and, both times I realized that is the most beautifull place I've ever been