Friday, June 06, 2008

parte once: part eleven- Baños (part 1)

So I'm starting to forget the order in which things happened, so here's a post about Baños.

Janna and I left Guayaquil at about 11.30 pm, headed for the mountains. Its a 6ish hour bus ride to Baños, so we decided to head out late, arriving in the morning. I popped a couple of gravol and slept through most of the night... until I woke up because I was FREEZING COLD!
It was so weird because cold is not something that one experiences often while living in the city of Guayaquil.
Finally we arrived in the town at about 7 in the morning. It was foggy and chiiiilllllyyy. Surrounded by mountains (and a volcano), Baños is beautiful. It is best known for its hot baths that come from springs in the mountains.
There are lots of "mountain people" who come into town every day with their goods strapped to their backs, dressed in bright beautiful colors and little hats. They sell everything from sweaters and blankets to herbs, breads, or paintings.

Janna and I decided to head over to the hot pools right away and then search for a hostel afterwards. (there are hostels every where you turn).
The baths were really neat. Its incredible that water THAT HOT can come out of a pile of compressed rocks, while more water, SO COLD that it makes you ache from the inside out as soon as it hits you, comes out of the same pile of compressed rocks.
After a delicious breakfast at Rico Pan(maker of the best "pan negro" that I ate in Ecuador... actually, best bread period that I ate during my whole time in Ecuador), Janna and I found ourselves voting to take a nap in at our home for the weekend... el hostel timara- a little hostel run by a man from England and his wife from Ecuador.

When we woke up it was a good 5 hours later, the sun was shining, and there was just over an hour till the sun set, so we decided to go hike up an incredibly steep hill to where a huge statue of Mary sits gazing over the town. (you can see the tincey little town at the behind us in the pic)
It was beautiful, and along the way Janna and I discovered that we're really out of shape and that our bodies don't work at ALL the same at high levels of altitude. On the way up, Tungurahua, the volcano decided to peek out at us from behind the clouds little by little. I did see the top, but not at the same time as the rest of it. It's an illusive volcano I tell you.
On the way down I was sure that my legs were going to give out, and my mom called me so I got to talk to her as I was hiking down a mountain in Ecuador. Cool, eh??!
The next day Jay and I rented bikes and rode a couple of hours to hike down to a waterfall called Pilon del Diablo.
There were waterfalls spouting out of the side of the hills as we peddled along, as well as tunnels pitch-black that we had to bike through. It was fun!When we got there our bums were splattered with mud and a local woman willingly took our picture (while laughing at us :)! ).
The waterfall was awesome. Theres so much water pounding over the edge constantly, its incredible that it never runs out.
After walking back and forth across a wobbly hanging bridge a couple times we walked up to see it closer, and we discovered that we could crawl through a little space and get behind it! It was worth it. And it proved to be a good thing that we had brought our raincoats since every other part of us was DRENCHED :).Once we hiked back up to the top where we'd locked our bikes we hopped in the back of a truck with a couple from Holland, a man from New Zealand, and a woman from somewhere in Europe. ** more to come about Baños...

1 comment:

Briggins said...

Mud? I think its bum sweat. Sick!