New look to better show off the photos at a large size (now that I don´t have a camera anymore....good timing, hahaha)
I began my trip to the south by heading off with four girlfriends to the "Adventure Tourism" capital of Chile, Pucón, located at the top of the Lakes District. It was a 12 hour overnight bus and upon arrival we checked into the hostel then, of course, hit the lake.
Oddly, the waterslide did not reach the water
The next day, we made the big decision to climb the local volcano, Villarica.
This involved getting up at 3am to be at the base of the mountain by 5am and hiking in the dark so we could be a couple hours up by sunrise.
Hiking with head lamps
First sandwich break at sunrise
What they didn´t tell us was that the sun actually rises on the other side of the volcano from where we are climbing, so we didn´t actually see the sunrise, just it´s effects
Soon after the sun rose, we put on crampons and started walking across glaciers
It felt like we were walking forever, but every time we looked up the summit still seemed far away
At least the view looking down was good
Finally we made it to the top, only to discover it was an anti-climactic sulfar spewing hole!
But, despite the fumes, we had a nice little picnic before heading down
And Jolie took a well-deserved nap
We walked down part of the volcano and slide on our butts for the rest! There were actually sliding trails especially for this purpose. Unfortunately it was fall and we all got really wet!
Our fearless and fabulous treking group
And the guides
We spent the rest of our time in Pucón doing more relaxing things, like sun bathing at the lake and drinking with rafting guides. Jolly met two Hungarian guys on the plane when she flew over and we met up with them in town. They introduced us to a bunch of other guides and invited us to a party at their house where they fed us what is basically a Hungarian doughnut but eatten with garlic and cheese! Yum... And then we went out dancing.
Jolly, Lucho, Emily, Me, Nicki
We were also in town for Valentine´s Day. Didn´t do anything special, but did see this nice wish written in the sky =)
Nicki and Jolly spent the last night rafting with the boys and the rest of us took a hike in the nearby National Park. It was very easy going after the volcano and nice to be in the forest.
Another view of the volcano
There were quite a few waterfalls
Bamboo! I never knew it grew wild in South America
As do monkey trees
And these plants (fuchsia?) which previously I had only seen in hanging baskets =)