Last Great Unclimbed Mountains

Reaching the mountains!

Well, quite a lot to tell you since the last post, but the internet’s been terrible and I haven’t been able to update my blog at all.

We left Corrientes and went to Salta, and finally met a high altitude archeologist there that we’ve been working with for year, but never met, named Christian Vitry.  We were only free on a Monday (the only day the High Altitude Archeology Museum in Salta is closed), but he kindly opened it for us and we discussed the sort of Incan ruins we have found, and what we might find on this trip.  This photo is clearly me trying to work out what on Earth the spanish description on the wall says….

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Conway broke in Salta, and he needed a new pulley, and the only place that had one was Mendoza (a 10 hour car journey away) so our friend Angel sent it to us by coach.  We lost two valuable days which, combined with the delay in Corrientes after the burglary, and the delay at the start, means we have lost a lot of time.  Our schedule is now so tight that we only have 4 rest days in the next 6 weeks, and some days have us walking for 30km at altitude to get to the base of a mountain!

Finally we left Salta and came up to a small town in the mountains called St Antonio do los Cobres.

We have a lovely hotel (clean, no b20161104_110817ugs!) and acclimatised, drinking litres of water as we went from sea level to 3,800 metres.

 

 

We drove up into the mountains to a pass at 5,000 metres, which was beautiful.  I took a photo of Pedro and Maria next to this sign.  They have been laughing at me a lot because of my attempts to speak Portuguese.   Last week I announced over dinner that I was married!  ‘Sou casado’, I said out of the blue!  It took us a while to work out that I should have said ‘Sou caNsado’, which means ‘I am tired…’

So, when we got to this sign at a mountain pass, they added to my confusion by telling me it meant ‘no weddings’ (prohibido cazar)…it actually means ‘no hunting’, I found out later!

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Still…I am trying every day to speak some Portuguese, and with Portuguese the common (native) language between the other five, I am at least now able to understand most of the conversation, even if I can’t take part…

Ok, heading to the mountains for our acclimatisation proper tomorrow!