Thursday, July 14, 2016

Peru Photos

Here are some photos. Narrative to follow at a later date!

We saw about 13 figures plus the aqueducts while flying over the mysterious Nasca Lines.

Zach is trying not to look as sick as he feels. Despite taking a Dramamine, I'm not in much better shape.

Feet back on solid ground!

While in Nasca, we did about a 5 mile run that visited 3 historic sites including Paradones.

On our run we also visited aqueducts we saw from the plane. Possibly built by Pre-Columbian Nazca architects around 540 A.D. in response to two prolonged droughts during that time.

Ascending to Inca ruins above Ollantaytambo, with the terraces of Ollantaytambo Fortress visible in the background.

The Inca ruins of Pinkuylluna were used as Inca storehouses. It was free to visit this site and only about a quarter mile from our hotel.

Looking through a window at Pinkuylluna, with the Fortress in the background.

The next day, we hiked to more free ruins. As we approached Pumamarka ruins, a farmer gave us permission to hike through his field.

Looking down at the canyon from Pumamarka.

Zach made friends with the natives at Pumamarka.

We hiked up to Machu Picchu from Aguas Calientes, and our effort paid off with tourist-free views.

We immediately hiked to the Sun Gate to watch as the light first splash color onto the Lost City of Machu Picchu.

The ruins were incredible, and the surrounding jungle mountains were, also.

Llamas graze amidst the ruins.

Those Incas know how to choose a good view.

Machu Picchu is home to myriad flora and fauna.

The trip was full of birding.

Temple of the Three Windows.

This stone kept time.

Wife and husband.

We watched restoration crews repack mud into some of the walls.

Some walls were so intricately carved that the blocks fit seamlessly and no mortar was necessary.

Machu Picchu was built into an impossibly steep mountainside.

The hike from Aguas Calientes to Machu Picchu follows a stone pathway made by the Inca.

Our Cordillera Huayhuash hike started in Llamac and ascended to this first stark pass.

Lots of grandfather cacti.

Day 2, the wind nearly knocked us over as we hiked up and over a steep pass.

The next drainage held spectacular views.

The rocky, arid landscape was bursting with purple lupine.

Camp at Curtelwain, where giardia symptoms hit hard.

We got a bus back to Huaraz, watching movies in Spanish and resting. We could hear the honking of taxi drivers and barking of dogs on the bustling streets below our hotel window.

Huaraz market

Huaraz market

Huaraz market

We headed to an alpine hostel called The Hof to finish recovering from giardia and get a few hikes in in the Cordillera Blanca.

We couldn't wait to get back on our feet, and immediately hiked to Laguna Churup from our hostel.

After an ascent that used ropes over rocky slabs like the Via Ferrata, we reached Laguna Churup.

At 14,600 ft, and still very weak from giardia, Laguna Churup was a tough warm up.

Giant hummingbirds loved these huge blooms on the hillside behind The Hof.

The next day, we planned an easy exploration and recovery day up Qedabra Cojup.

But as the scenery tempted us to press on, our recovery day turned into a 17 mile roundtrip.

Zach sporting his giardia.

The return trip was just as beautiful.

Our next big hike from the Hof was up to Llaca.

The glacial melt forms sparkling lakes. This lake has a dam to protect Huaraz below from flooding.

The crystal clear, brilliant blue stream hid the effects of cattle.

Finally we explored the beaches of Lima. Lima is the most grey, overcast place I have ever been.

We checked out the birding at Villa Marshes about 11 miles south of Lima in a district called Chorrillos.

We rented a boat and to our suprise a guide came with it. Though I do not know the English name, our guide call this bird a Wacu.

Layover in Las Vegas.

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