Cotopaxi

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This weeekend I took a tour to Cotopaxi. Cotopaxi is an vulcano an hour southeast of Quito. This being ecuador, the trip started with a crowded bus flying down a curvy road.

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Finally we arive at cotopaxi

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The road up the mountain was reminicent of pikes peak, except fully unpaved, and with bulldozers.

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On the way the guides devided the group up into spanish speakers and non spanish speaking (linquist guides!) anyway the spanish speaking group got the 4×4 and made it up to the parking lot . The non-spanish speaking got the mini van, which got stuck and had to hoof it.

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But it ended up working out, because when i finally made it up to the trail, this cool family offered me some of thier hot chocolate and some snacks (yeah buddy!)

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The rest of the hike took about an hour and a half, which feel infinately longer when you heart and lungs are playing dodge ball in your chess. But the view was pretty cool.

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We finally made it to the refuge.

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At 15700ft. this sucker is high. And the lack of oxigen makes for a killer buz.

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Unfortunately, while we were hiking up, clouds moved in obscuring the view of the glaciers. Inside the refuge they had a small resteraunt.

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Upstairs they have bunks for people climbing the mountain.

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The elevation of the summit is 19,000ft. When summiting you wait until midnight so the glaciers can cool/harden, then climb up in the dark. Usually you reach the top around 6am, watch the sunrise, then climb down before the ice gets too soft.

Incase you wanted to know how the refuge was built.

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After looking at the clouds that obscured the glaciers, we hiked back down to the parking lot. At which point the clouds cleared.

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We then selected mountain bikes to ride down the mountain.

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Of course having not ridden a bike in years, I took it easy. (I dont always do tricks on a mountain bike, but when i do, it’s on mountain roads with construction equipment and buses of tourist.)

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That and a competive mexican made the trip fun. (mountain bike drifting).

At the bottom they had a nifty lake

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Take it easy,

Paul

Ps: when you’re walking by a bbq stand and someone offers you some meat, check the grill before you accept. On a unrelated note, pig intestins are chewier than you would think.

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