I am writing to you after some utter craziness. There was so much craziness, that I will actually be splitting this into 2 blog posts. One, because I have a couple of awesome titles. Two, because I have too many pictures/videos to upload in one. Three, because there was too much craziness.
So, the Fiestas de Patrias time period is when everyone has time off work and takes a vacation. For people from Lima (and other places, but mostly Lima), this means they come to Huaraz and the surrounding areas to take a breather and become one with nature. Sounds like fun, right?? Well, maybe for people from Lima!! For me, it has meant that I am trying to get all of my interviews in, which is good for my research, but the process has been stressful. A lot of people do not want to be interviewed on their vacation, and they have been rather vocal about it.
I think I am at the point in my trip where I am just whiny. However, when you read the blog post that I write after this, maybe you will understand the whine a bit more. It's been stressful, ok? Anyways, I wanted to write about one of the tours that I went on this weekend to Llaca (pronounced "yaca"). I didn't really know what I was getting myself into, but it was kind of a lot of hiking. However, after many hours of hiking, people went ICE CLIMBING. I suppose I could have, but I didn't know what that would be about when I signed up, and I just didn't feel like paying the 100 soles to do something that I didn't really know about, so I didn't do it. However, it meant that we hiked up to this glacier, which was cool, and then over moraines and stuff until we got to this sheer ice wall. Then people tried to climb it. Very few succeeded. I was happy because the people that succeeded were also the people who let me interview them. The others obviously have problems with being whiny and cranky, like me. They whined that they didn't want to be interviewed and then whined to be let down from halfway (or less!) up this ice wall. Interesting, huh? Anyways, here are some pictures of the whole experience!!
This is the glacier on the mountains. Pretty, huh? We climbed along all those loose stones on the left. Yes, it was dangerous. Many of them were not super secure, so you'd step and then lose your balance. I sort of twisted my ankle, but my awesome hiking boots saved me from any real damage. It was just a little sore in the ankle muscle area the next day and today. But barely at all!! The blisters, however, are another story... Don't worry, Mom! You know I can handle both of my feet being completely blistered over from my Cross-country days!!
So, this is pretty cool. It's the end of the glacier!! There are some ice chunks further on, and that iced-over lake has a lot of chunks floating in it, but really, this is the end!! However, even cooler, compare the two pictures here!! A big chunk of the glacier fell off while we were there. I was at the wrong angle to video tape it (I do have a short video of the aftermath, but it doesn't translate well). However, I do have these before and after pictures, so you can see what was going on. De-glaciation in action, folks! Well, actually, chunks breaking off is a normal phenomenon anytime. However, I was there for this one!
This is after we were walking on the glacier for a while. I am top on rock and dust covered ice, but I am also in a mini-ice cave under the wall everyone is going to try to climb later. It was pretty crazy and also surprisingly warm!! I had my winter coat, hat, and gloves, but I was really warm from the hike and the strong sun!!
Oh, no! Mah tongue ith thuck!!
I thought I should add in a picture of ice climbing, so you could see what I mean. It's pretty crazy. This is one of the only people from Lima who made it to the top. Incidentally, he was also one of two to give me an interview...