To South America and Back

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Her Big Toe Nail is Disgusting....but worth it.

We are still in Chilé, but I thought I would write something about our trek outside Bariloche...fond memories of times past, not the calamity of our current travels.
I was looking over some notes that I had made, trying to think about what to write, so I just decided to make it as brief as I can and just put down some of the notes I made...
Note: The pics of Aimees GrossToe wouldn´t load from this computer, they should be coming soon.

Day 1.

-started out relatively easy, lots of greenery, and a well worn path, I think this is good, especially for Aims, since the cycling was a so hard and hot....earn a little trust back.
-walked through a field of dead trees, hundreds of them all along the mountainside.
-they didn´t have any peanut butter at the supermarcado, so it´s Nutella and Durazno (peach) jelly sandwiches, no peanut butter?
-we keep trying to re-pass the groups of hikers that pass us, who cares if they have lighter loads. need to stop doing this, especially if we are to do three days.
-near the end of the first day I was hoping that Aimee wasn´t going to push me over the edge, and into the ravine bellow, especially after the last half mile, extremely steep and exposed to the hot sun, great views of the adjoining mountains though.

Camp 1: Refugio Frey
-amazing views lakeside, and free camping, I could do this forever.
-climbed a little, ok a lot higher to see into the next valley-reminds me of hiking in CO with my Dad, sitting at the top of the world.
-I keep looking around while at the top thinking...where could the trail go from here, not over the top of that mountain right? Right?
-I go back down and drag Aimee to the top for sunset-she´s thinking of pushing again, but once at the top, the view is staggering.
-we can´t wait for dinner.
-reading Between Extremes by Brian Keenen and John McCarthy, a book I was given by Phil our friend from Leeds. Sorry Phil but I feel like strangling both Brian and his unhealthy obsession for Neruda. Interesting to hear another take on S.A. though.
-dinner is way too much meat, and even more rice, very good though, worth the wait.
-met a couple from Belgium at dinner, I think I started in about Cyclocross too quick. Although they do tell of two very good Flemish cycling movies...must check them out.
-walk back to the tent in the most inky black night I can remember, the stars are awesome...but thank you Erik for the notion to bring headlamps.

Day 2.
-bones are a little stiff from sleeping on the ground, I mean $2 sleeping mats.
-water is running short, so we do what everyone else is doing, fill from the lake, tastes ok...
-first climb is pretty easy, large boulders, one little snow covered stream, and another huge beautiful lake at the top, about an hour in.
-interesting snow walk next, angling up about half of the next basin.
-two well groomed Golden Retrievers (???) guarding the next turn, barking their heads off, what the hell are two GR´s doing out here, and where is their master? Many people clambering off the trail and up to avoid them.
-I take a wrong turn and things get real ugly and real steep quick. Someone is not happy. What could I do, the trails are not clearly marked.
-back track shakily
-on the right course and up to the top in no time flat, Aimee did really well, and at that point we had to make a decision to keep going, maybe another 5 or 6 hours, or turn and head to where there are some chairlifts down. I left it up to her, and she gave it a green light....
-down is kind of fun, jump...sliiiiide...jump....sliiiiiiide. I keep thinking of a Beasties lyric:"slide-ing, on down the hill"
-the bottom has to be one of the oldest forrests I have ever seen, amazing, and this place just seeps...old, everything is huge, and the light is coming through the trees "this is why we kept going I say"
-Nutella and Peach Jelly Sanwiches are the Bomb!
-it seems like we´re going up again, quick..the Israelies are gaining on us and we just passed them a little bit ago.
-next peak looks a little steeper than the last, and it seems to be snow at the top.
-now, I want to preface this by saying that heights don´t really unnerve me, and I´ve done my fair share of hiking, and climbing, but scrambling straight up a cliff face digging my bare hands in snow, footing slipping, while staring at the sun. ok ok, I was really scared.
-got to the top and the both of us were gasping for the rock.
-almost out of water
-can see the next refugio at the bottom
-had to Aimee to go faster as I can see she doesn´t have much left, the last few kilometers are a blur as we run out of water and our legs start shaking
-I remember we kept talking about our favorite foods, and what kinds of beer tasted best really cold, every kind.
-I can safely say this is the hardest hiking I have ever done...

Camp 2: Refugio Jakob
-rustic cabin overlooking another lake, situated on some huge rocks, waterfall across the way
-tired and sort of delirious as we wander around the camp area, soaking our feet, and gulping huge ammounts of spring water.
-the dinner tonight was simply put..exqusite...soup, gnocchi, meat, and dessert, just what we needed, we kept looking around for Nutella to put on our bread.
-older chatty couple from Buenos Aires, and a kayaker from France at our table. I told him, in french of course that my father and my uncle love kayaking.
-Aimee went right to sleep in the tent escape from the Tavanos (horsefly) and maybe from the hike we did too...I stayed out for a few minutes to look at the stars, it amazes me every time I get to a place where there is no light pollution, stars everywhere...
-Sun Salutations (Yoga) to stretch out the ol´ legs, Aimee always makes me look like some kind of stiff zombie during these exercises, but damn if they didn´t feel good.
-coffee, please coffee, un poco mas
-we actually felt pretty good this morning, and kind of anxious (maybe a little too much) to get back on the trail

Day 3.
-Aimee fell in the river the first chance she got. Luckily she was in good spirits about it, it was pretty funny though, she waited....and waited...and waited, and then jumped, and splash!
-Tavanos! Tavanos! I thought she might take another spill at any moment from all the swatting that was going on back there.
-the forest was pretty amazing, lots of bamboo rising above our heads, totally diferent than anything we had seen either day.
-the river that we were following was the bluest, cleanest river that I have ever seen.
-the Frenchie passed us.
-we passed the couple from B.A. and they started about an hour before us
-we came to the last big hill, not a mountain, just a steep incline up the trail I really did not think that Aims was going to make it up this one, from the way she was bobbing and weaving I didn´t think that she would make it much further on the flats I carried both our packs up the hill, and the next mile or so to the end. She was still lagging a little when we got there, but man if my heart wasn´t pounding, and my grin was as wide as my face for her, I couldn´t believe we made it.


At 7:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Aimee, I think it is a "Dunn thing" these men taking their women on hikes to faraway places where there is no water, steep cliffs, and almost unbearable situations. Luckily, I've found they do mellow after many adventures and many years!! Happy Valentine's Day to both of you from the USA!! We Love you!! Be safe!! D & K

At 1:33 PM, Blogger JabberJaw said...

no water..there was water everywhere, you can just drink it from the streams water...ha.

At 1:14 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Go easy on Aimee, I command thee!!!! Also, remember when the other groups are passing you that we run the planet. Yup that's right. Be safe, halla! DBI4.

At 6:03 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

That's a helluva hematoma! Where'd you get them hep brazilian sandals? I like. Happy, not hairy, trails!

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