Sunday, October 18, 2009

Pucon.. Rallies and Volcanos

Elaaaa Foufi, and hello again Mother and Father... when you get back from Scotland and have internet again.

I just wanted to pop some photo's up so you can see the places I've been the last couple of weeks... Pucon, San Pedro de Atacama and before that Mancora. For me the most important thing to show you is these photo's of our volcano trek yesterday. Seriously the photo's don't do it justice and exactly how steep it was doesn't seem to come through in the photo's.

First though, when we arrived in Pucon they were setting up a podium in the town centre with Mobil banners all over it. In my mind that only ment one thing... Rallying. And I was right, the national Rally of Chile was in town. As such I headed down to the centre on the evening to watch the opening ceremony for the event. It seemed like the whole town had turned out for the event and it was awesome to see.

Rally of Chile

Pucon is the adventure sports capital of Chile and possibly all of South America. You can hike, go rafting, horse riding, mountain biking, paragliding and jump out of aeroplanes... however the thing Pucon is possibly most famous for is Volcano Villarica, the volcano which looms over the town.
Without fully looking into exactly what it entailed, me and Marco signed up to hike to the volcano's crater. The next day the cloud had cleared and we could see the volcano in all its snow capped majesty, and god did it look big!

Me at the start of the hike.... ice axe and all

The summit, so far away

Early in the hike, look I'm still smiling, and it's not even a scared smile

A well deserved break

Still sooooo far to go

Early in the day team photo

Again... still sooooo far to go

Finally we're making progress, and it's starting to get steeper

Almost there and so steep

Vistory team photo at the crater

The view from the sumit

Like I said for the whole of the last hour to an hour and a half I was pretty much continually having a panic attack. The photo's seriously don't even vaguely show how steep it was, I kept getting this feeling I was going to fall off the world... weird I know.

At the crator

The crater was amazing, it was smoking but it was so deep you couldn't see the lava down in the bottom. But it was amazing.

It was hard not to imagine what would happen if it errupted... I think we'd have been done for in all honesty

The crater was huge, that's Marco in the distance

Look at that view... you can't really see but I'm still panicking

So I managed to trek Volcano Villarica, apparently even if the weather permits only about 50% of people actually make it to the top... let alone people who have a fear of heights haha. And now it's time for body boarding down a white water river ;)

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