Trujillo, Peru – Huaca de la Luna, Chan Chan 

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Peru

 

The entire fishing fleet in harbor on the way to Trujillo.

So we have been in Trujillo Peru for three days now.  This is a larger city on the coast, north of Lima.  It’s kind of crazy here, the city is basically foggy all the time – can’t see the sky at all.  You are right next to the ocean but really cannot see it – you can hear it though.  There are also mountains here, that you can’t see unless you are next to them.  We have been to two sites of interest, Huaca de la Luna and Chan Chan – both here before the Inca, and both conquered by the Inca.

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Huaraz:  Cordillera Blanca… Unbelievable Views (& a Peruvian Dog)

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Peru

 

Need a spectacular peak? Try this one.

 
We have spent the last couple of days in Huaraz, which is the center of the universe for the Cordillera Blanca mountain range in Peru.  This place is unbelievable, and honestly could be as spectacular as Torres del Paine national park in Chile.  It does not have the tourist infrastructure that the national park does, however the views are simply spectacular.  This is a trekking center, having treks from 5-30 days leaving from Huaraz.  The one thing that is apparent here is that it has not become totally dependent upon Tourism.   Largely tourists don’t come here because it’s not on the main (Lima, Cusco, Puno, Arequipa) circuit.  However, having been on that circuit, and now having been to Huaraz I can say that this place could be more spectacular than any of the others.  Yes, Machu Picchu is great and special, but this is a natural beauty that was not made by man.

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Scouting in action: real world first aid merit badge in peru

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Peru

 

the wreck… we were some of the first here

 
A short blog post to follow up on Gavin’s post, as I forgot to write about this.  One of the things that we did before the trip was built a first aid kit, which I get poked at on our trip for having too much stuff.  We have used some of it, but it was really designed for a what if scenario where we were hurt.  Well while driving the other day to our current location in Huaraz we drive past a car that has flipped, and cars are just beginning to pull over.  We slowed down, did a u turn and drove up to the crash site.  First thing off the car, the first aid kit.   I’m no doctor, nor paramedic, but I can say that we knew what to do- at least in making sure folks were ok until real help arrived.  

 

my bright orange first aid kit. we were the only people with first aid supplies

 I 

hayden stopping bleeding on lady in the back

 Here’s the thing about this post and about all of this.  We do scouts because we like it, but also because it teaches real world skills.  Hayden has his first aid merit badge, and Gavin is a new scout, having just crossed over.  We all jumped out of the car and we’re ready to help.  I had surgical gloves in my kit, grabbed them and started checking on passengers.  There were three, a driver and two ladies in the back seat.  I needed help, and Hayden came over and helped out.  Gave him a pair of gloves and some gauze pads to hold on the First Lady in the back seat who’s head was bleeding.  The great thing was that he knew what to do.  He also helped diagnose that the driver probably had broken ribs and was in shock.  The driver was making phone calls while sitting in the front seat, even though he had major cuts on both hands.  I tried to give him some gauze to hold on, but he didn’t take it and let his hand bleed.  It wasn’t bad and he was alert so let him do his thing.  The other lady in the back had a huge lump on her head but was ok.  We stopped the bleeding, made sure everyone was ok and then paramedics arrived about fifteen minutes later.  The boys came up to me at one point ready to make a stretcher.

It’s one of those proud parent moments that you have kids that are willing to help… Not afraid to stick their head into a crashed car and do the right thing.  As for my first aid kit… It did a great job, and we still have glow sticks, survival food, safety sleeping bags, tape, scissors, gloves, wound sealant and more… The three passengers, after car totaled were basically fine, some minor cuts and bumps on he head, but it could have been much much worse.

Scouts teaches life skills.

Ica, Chincha Alta, and first days in Huaraz

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Peru

 

Laguna shallop, at 14,365 feet

Well, it has been a good long while since my last post, and alot has happened since. After driving to Nasca and staying a night, we had gooten used to sea level again. Driving to Ica, we got to see some of the Nasca Lines. While you are driving the Panamerican north, you can stop at two watchtowers, and you pay two soles. We decided not to do the airplane tour, because we watched some of them, and they are banking at 45/90 degree angles. According to reviews, the planes really aren’t that good…

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Farm Lunch & Visiting Ollantaytambo Ruins

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Peru


Well a shorter blog post today.  We were able to goto a local farm lunch in town and then visit the Ollantaymbo ruins for another look and large rocks that have been moved by men.  The farm lunch at Albergue Lodge was prety great.  We got a walk around tour of the farm – which is connected to a hotel/restaurant.  This farm produces much of their own produce for use in the restaurant, and we were able to sample fresh veggies as we walked around.  There is nothing better than fresh off the farm.   Read More

Moray, and Salineras Salt Mine (local things near Urabamba)

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Peru


Ok, we’ve been doing a lot of stuff and splitting blogs into two helps keep the ipad operational.  We like to upload a lot of photos and sometimes too many photos equates to ipad crashing…  Yeterday we went to Moray and the Salineras Salt Mines (started by Inca).  These are all local activities in/around Urabamba so it was a good local day.  We ended the day eating dinner in a great place (Kampu) that serves pizzas at night, but also he makes great local curries.  We all had a great meal – which we ranked in one of our top 10 meals on our entire trip so far. Read More

Llama Treking (the easy way) and visiting Pisac Ruins

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Peru

 

Do You Llama?


Llama Trek with Llama Pack in Urabumba

So after several months of travellig we finally were able to complete one of Cindy’s wishes for the trip – Llama walking/treking.  We were introduced to an organization called Llama Pack in Urabamba.  This organization is focused on re-introducing the llama as a pack animal in Peru.  Many llamas have cross bred with Alpaca’s, and are not as strong and good for packing as they used to be.  The llama is “eco friendly” since they do not rip the roots of plants out they cut with their teeth.  They also have padded feet that keeps a light touch on the ground and doesn’t cause as much damage as a hoof.

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Machu Picchu:  Trains, Busses and Llamas

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Peru

 

Machu Picchu from the backside in the morning.

Well we did it, made our way through the sacred valley to Aguas Calientes and then up to Machu Picchu.  This is an amaing place that was built over a period of 60 years by the Inca.  800 of the most influential people lived here, and it was abandoned in 1534 when the Spanish conquered Cusco (the capital).  When leaving the city the Inca destroyed the only two paths into M.P. and as such left the city to be consumed by the jungle again.  The city was “hidden” for over 300 years until its rediscovery in 1900.  An American, Hiram Bingham, came in 1911 and explored the area and found Machu Picchu as well.  He was sponsored in National Geographic’s first exploration the following year and returned.  He then proceeded to remove about 6,000 collectable items, which are now at Yale University.  Why Yale continues to hold on to these Peruvian artifacts I have no idea.  It would seem that they would be better served in Peru.

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Cuzco, finally.

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Peru

 

mmmmm, tasty

Well, after 5 weeks of driving, we made it from BA, to Cusco, where we have been wanting to go ever since we started this trip. The drive from Puno, to Cusco took 5 long, but very beautiful hours. driving by snowcapped peaks and old Inca ruins, I would say it was worth the one hour delay in Juliaca, due to traffic. My dad calls Juliaca “The town of the devil.” We didn’t get caught in them, but we did see some more protesting when driving into Cusco. People were burining a truck across the rails to stop the train, which most tourists take. No tourists, no money, right?

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Lake Titicaca, Travelling Puno to Cusco

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At the summit, crossing from Puno to Cusco. Amazing Views.

So we spent the last couple of days in Puno near the Peru/Bolivia Border and Lake Titicaca – one of the largest lakes in the world – at 13,000 feet.  Yesterday we took a boat expedition to a floating people that live on islands that they make of reeds, as well as an island where we had lunch and bought some local wares.  Today we drove from Puno to Cusco (7 hours) and we are now in the Inca Capital.

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