Thursday, February 2, 2017

Trekking Pinturas Canyon To The Cave Of Hands

After some miles on the barest track, our van pulled up at a spot overlooking the canyon. Claudio had already explained that we had the option of doing the 5k "trek" or could simply ride on to the Cave of Hands in the van. Vicki wisely opted for the latter. The descent into the canyon was steep and covered in sand and gravel. Not good for an alumna of the Center for Total Joint Replacement. I carried on, failing to realize that a decent into the canyon likely meant an ascent out of it. But it was a great hike. Jan. 28.
Overlooking Pinturas Canyon

As the trail descends, the van departs

The canyon

A thyme bush

Below, a small herd of guanaco crosses the canyon floor (click
to enlarge)

We press on

Watched closely by the vultures

On the canyon floor, a habitation traditionally occupied by just
one gaucho; the whole empanada is being returned to nature
prior to joining the national park

Darwin's rose, someone said; but it doesn't look like a rose...?

Survival of the nastiest: a pine cone with thorns...nasty ones

Not messing with this

A solitary hiker in the canyon; turns out she was an English
teacher in a private elementary school in Puerto Varas, headed 
for the same cave tour we were on

Canyon outwash

A guanaco footprint

Calafate berries (box leaf barberry); eat one, they say, and you
will return to Patagonia; they look and taste a bit like
blueberries (never mind the nasty thistles); a bit; they are
loaded with seeds; if you return to Patagonia, it will not be
to eat more calafate berries

A whole nasty bush of them

Returning to nature

Thistle and butterfly

Basic signage

Rio Pinturas

Fish and canyon walls

In the distance, the Cave of Hands

The whole complex...visitor center on right

A group on the catwalk by the paintings

Huffing and puffing,, I am the last to emerge from the canyon
and to join the tour

No comments: