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The Trek begins

Manuel, a super driver and sweet guy, brought us [Vidal, my friend and I] to Ollentaytamba [sp?]. The inn was perfectly located so that when we woke up we could see the sun shining through mountains and shedding light through the stones at the second of MANY Incan ruins we would see. We met our porters 6 guys who were gentlemen from the first minute we met them up until the day we all parted. The su was brutal and the altitiude cuaght us off guard a bit. In cusco, 11000 ft, breathing was tricky but not impossible. It got exponentially harder when we started our trek on the cachicatta trail. But the porters and cook, Miguel, had lunch and juice and water and a sort of makeshift port-a-john set up for us when we reached the halfway mark. It couldnt have been more perfectly planned and the rest was much needed. We hiked on passing a giant waterfall that took my breath a way a little. Just standing and getting sprinkled with the falls' spray felt fantastic. I knew then that our trail would be perfect from beginning to end. In retrospect it was. Before or after this we visited alocal school on the way and eventhough the kids were adorable, sweet and seemed happy it was grossly neglected not for any reason other than lack of funds. Volunteers help out and fix the worst of the problems but it was heartbreaking for me.

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