Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Day 4: Ascent to Putre by John Murphy

The day began with a few final step tests and early morning runs for the more adventurous. Breakfast was met with a combination of excitement and surprise - bread rolls! Still, this wasn't with gusto as we fuelled up for the day of travel ahead. After fitting most of our kit back into our bags, we loaded up the bus for the journey to Putre. It was noted at this point that our poor overladen coach may be too great for the vehicle weight limit upon leaving Arica. Fortunately a van was procured by victor, our tour rep, to help transport some of the bags across the checkpoint. With that sorted we then continued into the desert, going higher and higher into the altiplano and more and more amazing scenery. Although only a few hours the journey had many highlights, including a visit to the first church in the highlands,seeing our first snowy peak, and, best of all; arriving with all luggage intact. After arriving slightly breathless we settled into the hotel and had some r and r for the afternoon. There was an opportunity to have a wander round the town of Putre which was small but more pleasant than Arica with a few tasty looking restaurants. Later brought a great game of cricket and a few lost balls before dinner at a restaurant down the road. Everyone was impressed by a delicious 3 courses including alpaca which was actually very good - far better than previous reports may have suggested! Everyone then headed to bed with reminders that the first nights sleep at altitude may not be the best.... John Murphy

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