Posts Tagged oasis

Get the Mules!

Posted on April 22, 2011 by 3 Comments

We were all a little sore the day after our hike down. Descending 1,300 meters in 3 hours will do that to you.Still, we did another short hike and checked out some of the immediate surroundings. Bode was more interested in swimming.

We decided against any long treks, so it was time to hire some mules for the ride up. Apparently the poor mules do this trek twice a day, and we were not inclined to leave on the first trip at 5am. So, we got to enjoy the oasis all afternoon. Fred and Regine handled all the logistics for hiring 3 mules and 1 donkey. The donkey carried our 2 backpacks and the mules carried us and the kids. Fred and Regine took turns walking up, they are far better hikers than we are!

Riding up was unstable at best, but the mule did their job and kept us safe.  We had a guide and his mule with us, which was good because the mules liked to take a break anytime they could. He would yell, “muelle, muelle” and they’d finally get moving.

About 1/2 way up our 3 hour mule ride, the skies decided they couldn’t wait for the normal evening storm. It started slow, but the last hour the rain was pretty hard. We stopped once to put on our jackets, but quickly found out they were not as waterproof as we would like. Once we finally got back up the canyon and back into town it was a complete downpour, the streets were rivers and our shoes were holding water.

We decided to spend another night in a hostal since it was dark and we were wet and cold. A good wood-fired pizza might do the trick. Problem was, we only had the clothes on our backs, which were soaking wet and the temperature kept dropping.

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Filed Under: Peru

Yanque

Posted on April 20, 2011 by 1 Comment

Twenty minutes from the hot springs is the town of Yanque, a beautiful Andean town. Somehow, we ended up with all the kids and followed the T5. No tourists here, as most folks pass through on their way to Cruz del Condor.

We waited around the square while Fred found us a place to camp, with access to a bathroom and hot shower of a hotel that was under construction. We pulled in to find a huge lot, an alpaca and several dogs. The kids immediately set to building a castle with the rocks lying about, and we knew we weren’t going anywhere for a bit.

The plan was to sleep here and grab a bus in the morning all the way to Cabanaconde. We could have driven it easily, but we would just have to park and leave the vehicle for the following night anyway.

 

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Filed Under: Peru

A Real Oasis

Posted on April 4, 2011 by 1 Comment

Despite our rude introduction to Huacachina, we decided to give it another shot.  It’s a small oasis in the middle of gigantic sand dunes. There are dunes in every direction and a little lake surrounded by palm trees – just like what you would imagine as a kid.

We hiked up the nearest dune to take it all in and watch the sunset. A pretty unique experience.

It takes about 20 minutes to walk around the whole town. Despite the small size, the town is packed on the weekends and there are backpackers everywhere. This place is known as a party destination and that might explain why our little hostal was so grungy.  No sense picking up the empties and cigarette butts if there will just be more the next day…

For $2 USD each for use of the kitchen and bathrooms, I think we may have been overcharged.

Once Monday hit, the town cleared out and no more parties til 3a.m. It was nice to relax for a couple days, but after a while being constantly covered in sand gets to you.

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Filed Under: Peru

An Oasis

Posted on February 16, 2010 by 3 Comments

We found a true oasis in the desert. Really.

San Ignacio is known as the date palm oasis, out in the middle of miles and miles of desert. There wasn’t much scenery on the way here, but the Transpeninsular Highway was smooth and easy. The town is beautiful, with palms and water and fruits. Dates are the big deal here, and we walked by a small store where a woman was making date cookies, pies and bread. It smelled wonderful. She even made us a batch of cookies without milk or eggs so Bode could have some too.

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We ran around the town square, there were a few little girls giggling at Bode trying to speak Spanish. There were some teenage girls who just had to touch his curly blond hair. We tried explaining to him that not many people in Mexico have blond hair, but he got confused and later asked why people here didn’t have curly hair.

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After many nights in the bus, we decided to splurge on a little more space and stretch out a bit. We read about a cottage that rents rooms that look over a beautiful garden (Casa Leree), so we nabbed the last room. It’s tranquil and serene – an oasis in the oasis.

About half way through the date cookies, Bode told us that it was making him sick. I ate the other half, and we headed to the room to do some reading and vegging out.  It was Super Bowl Sunday, so Jason went out to a local restaurant to watch the game.

Still wondering if it was possible to be allergic to dates, I was a little surprised when I was reading a book to him and he threw up all over me. Then the bed. Then the floor.  So, that was my Super Bowl Sunday… probably still better than Peyton Manning’s.

Anyway, from the sound of it Jason had a great time. The game was all in Spanish, no  super bowl ads, and with a lot of Mexicans who didn’t speak English. Everyone asked him who his team was and he was going with El Santos from the start.

The best part was probably that he had no idea what was going on at the hotel.

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Filed Under: Baja