So they’re all back in the UK but the dedicated Andean Expedition team, keen to share their stories and photos with the world are still keeping those blog posts coming….Thanks guys! This installment takes us from the dizzy heights of La Paz along their second trek to down into the cloud forest at Coroico.
After an interesting night in La Paz, the team headed off in to the mountains to tackle the Choro Trail. The route would take us from the top of the mountains through the forest to Coroico, our final destination.
The trek started off tough as we began to battle through the sleet and snow (who needs Bear Grylls?). After a good four hours hiking we stopped for lunch, and to Richards delight a spot of coca tea! Little did we know what the afternoon had in store for us… To Nadja’s delight, she took Victor down in the battle of speed to conquer first place in the treking order, with Lucy closely in tow. By the afternoon, the weather brightened up and the steep downhill challenge was accepted with various skids and slides in all directions due to the slippery rocks! Might I add Carmen won that challenge gracefully. After a hard days trek which soaked us all to the bone, we were all relieved to be welcomed in to camp Chalapampa which provided us with shelter and and hot water for a well deserved cup of tea!
With much anticipation, and after a good stretch session to analayze the damage caused by the previous day, the team waved goodbye to camp Chalapampa and headed off with a spring in our step, exited to see what lay ahead on our second day of hiking. And the Choro Trail did not disappoint, providing us with the most breathtaking scenery, and sounds of nature at its best. Only one ´´beast´ of an uphill was in store for us today and to Jodie and Danny’s delight its path was lined with wild strawberries! Lunch was spent admiring the view from the top, and eating our newly found speciality crumbed bread, after Richard had decimated his precious buns! After a pretty special day hiking we arrived at San Francisco (ticked that box) which was bananna tree central, with a breath-taking view of the valley, and to Lucy’s delight…chocolate and coke!
As morning broke over Quest village, so did Richard’s sense of humour as he battled to start the fire with drenched wood. Lets just say breakfast was a little late that morning…The hike was a great success and even included Inca steps which Jodie, Alicia and Victor loved! After a well deserved rest and a few more hours hike we finally arrived at one of the most famous campsites with a view, known as the Japanese campsite, which provided the team with beer, chocolate, coke, tea and EVEN Guavas! We slept away the afternoon comfrotably under the shade of various trees, listening to the sounds of the forest and on every occassion a scream from Nadja fending of the vicious ants?!
That evening the Japanese Guru informed Jodie she was the first person from Africa to visit his campsite. Dinner was served in true camping style, the Quest team relaxed around a campfire to winding down and absorbing the exitement and moments from the day whilst admiring the stars and fire flies flying past.
After a good nights sleep we enjoyed breakfast at a local lodge. We then set off on our final day of the Choro Trail with a spring in our step and a great exitement for what Coroico might bring.
After a shorter hike than expected we jubilantly jumped on the bus apart froma few of us who were keen to start the trek again! We arrived at Hotel Esmeralda for a well deserved buffet lunch and, spent the afternoon relaxing by the pool, little did we know we were all being eaten alive by the dreaded forest sandfly- Coroico’s most famous pest. The evening was spent checking out the town’s sights and enjoying a spot of Mexican cuisine.