Ecuador is an amazing country, with one very noticeable advantage: everything here is close. Go hiking, you hardly find yourself severely isolated from civilization, so plans can be changed directly in the road. This happened to us.
Reportage prepared specifically for our friends Enjourney.ru.
Having fond on the map and low Cotacachi volcano, we went for a walk in the surrounding area. In particular, we attracted not so much how many vertex Crater Lake Caldera-essentially another volcano-with the funny name Kuikoča (translated from Quechua-Laguna-Guinea pig). All this beauty belongs to the Andean Mountain system (on public tourist signs, now without seeing the word "climbing" everywhere it proudly is replaced by "andinizmom"). We know that Kuikoča is close to the village of Cotacachi, so enjoy the views along the way, started slowly. There are a lot of Indian people, they prefer the traditional clothes of the modern Spanish language and almost no use. On the streets and in the stores rather hear Quechua, than Spanish. Tourists here too almost. The sky is rasčistilos′, and it seemed that the massive Andes "telesa" filled the streets.
Around the lagoon is located the State National Park Cotacachi-Kaâpas. The entrance to it is free, but limited time-after five through the official entrance to the lagoon does not pass. However, its high shores populated (thus the indigenous population), the cost can start up a conversation with the local as the passage immediately found, as well as a remarkable place in the parking lot.
Weather in these latitudes and altitudes, changing quickly. As soon as the clouds released volcano looming over us, we realized that the snow will not see. And even a beautiful lagoon seemed already quite open in front of us. And here is far on the horizon in the rays of sunset blazed glaciers tops Cayambe. This peak is closer in this country is to the equator. And even when the Sun is completely hidden, thick orange light Cayambe attracted our eyes. That evening, our plans have changed.
After spending a wonderful morning at Kuikoči, we went to the call of the majestic snowy mountains. Here we first felt like everything is close. A pair of buses and we're already in town with the same name. From it to the top and closest to the glacier village walks old dinged bus. And now, waiting for his passengers with rustic country road we went upstairs. Landed us in 12 km from the glacier volcano Cayambe. We have before us a stately boundless landscapes. Everyone around seemed a miracle. Clothes were replaced by the local population, there were women in hats and colorful skirts covering only the knees.
Height is already beginning to be felt, and then we stopped to rest a little. However, it did not have long to go, more than half of the way us girls muzhichki who also take a walk to the glacier, only by car.
And here, from ideas to implementation has passed less than a day. Yesterday we looked at this from another province, and today have been able to touch him. The height to which the dopolzaet Glacier (and dopolzli), equal to about four thousands of semistam meters. Honestly, we froze. Closer to sunset rose sharply squally wind and cost the Sun sit down, came the clouds and brought barbed rain. After admiring the incredible beauty of the sunset, we went down to four thousand three hundred meters and stayed till morning. It seemed miraculous that our tent stood that night, and we didn't have like girl Ellie in dreamland with a track from the red brick.
In these regions the mountains are dotted with subtle, barely noticeable but very important lines-irrigation channels. No one knows who built them and when, but still try to maintain them in good condition. They provide water, going from the glaciers, all who live far from civilization. Discovering such a channel, we decided to take a stroll and linger in the National Park is still a bit to admire the majestic volcano Cayambe.
And so, instead of a pair of scheduled nights we spent nearly a week in the campaign. It was a very pleasant surprise from Ecuador!