Chronicles of the Wayward Moot

WELCOME TO THE MOOT, oh world-wanderers and word-whisperers. After two years of Peace Corps. After 2,200 miles on the Pacific Crest Trail. What. Comes. Next?


From another recent trip. We headed up into the high sierra above a town called Principal with the aim of reaching an unnamed and possibly never before seen alpine lake, all part of an ongoing project to contruct an extreme ecotourism trail from the sierra to the Oriente (Amazonia jungle region) of Ecuador. It was cold and wet and colder and wetter, so the original four day plan became a single overnight trip for a few of us. The details of the trip would take to long to recount, but here are a few pics. Above, we're drinking fresh mint tea brewed over a campfire with mint that was growing right outside of this mud and stick shack.

Principal is the small community visible in the upper left of this map. The idea was to hike to the laguna in the lower right corner the first day, but hypothermia and dangerous weather was setting in so we didn't even make it that far. Note the gnarly contour lines....

Upon our return the next day, we took a different route trying to same time and ended up taking quite a bit longer. The river was cresting because of the rain upstream and the only way to cross it "safely" was to use this sketchy eucalyptus log bridge built by a small time miner living in the hut in the background. No bark, slick and wet and perfectly round, plus the thing was swaying and bending with every step... three of us crossed with backpacks on, but our amigo pictured here was having none of that...

Believe me, this was a lot more intense in person.

Safe and sound and a good deal drier and warmer in Principal, we visited with a woman weaving a course straw hat. Her granddaughter was shy, but I snapped a picture of her before she dashed away.


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