Last night was enjoyable despite rather unpleasant quarters. Following dinner, I was able to get everyone to go to the one happy hour in town. I felt it was the first time our guides bonded fully with the group. This enabled today to be a bunch of fun with the guides. Last night was also great for my Spanish. The native speakers all said I was very good—especially with my tenses—and our guide from
As for the day’s itinerary, we decided to change it a bit, and I believe we are all happy we did so. The original plan was to walk all day and to finish in Aguas Calientes just at the end of the day. Instead, we decided to accelerate our trip to Aguas, allowing us to do some climbing in the afternoon. To do so, we took a bus a few miles down the road towards Aguas Calientes, saving us much time. We then joined up with a train track which runs to AC. We walked along the tracks for about three hours. At the time I didn’t realize it, but we were in fact circling around
The walk was our easiest yet because we were going along railroad tracks, keeping the grade tolerable. Additionally, the scenery was so phenomenal. I had trouble accepting that it was real. The three hours passed quickly as I sucked on coffee beans growing along the trail while conversing in Spanish about the Simpsons and about my economic beliefs.
Ultimately, the train tracks led us right into the heart of the city of
After checking into our hostel and having a light lunch, we headed out to climb to the top of the mountain Putu Cosi (Quechuan meaning happy mountain). This is one of the many mountains that surround
The trail to the top was supposed to take 2 to 2.5 hours. I made the climb in about an hour. I have definitely climbed more rugged trails in the
1. Movie on top of Putu Cosi, looking at Machu Picchu
2. View of train tracks which we hiked on during the day
3. View of Aguas Calientes from train tracks at night
4. View of Putu Cosi from bottom
5. View of Aguas Calientes from part way up Putu Cosi
6. Adam climbing in the one non-steep part of Putu Cosi
7. Traffic jam of people taking ladders up Putu Cosi. Most people turned around after seeing all of the ladders.
8. Me at the top of Putu Cosi with the non-Machu Picchu direction in the background.
9. Adam at the top of Putu Cosi with Machu Picchu above his left shoulder.