Joe called from the team’s first camp on the approach to the mountain. The team made good time this morning, arriving at the Pampas de Lenas camp in about 5 hours. Today’s hike took them alongside the roaring Rio Vacas, tucked deep in a high desert canyon. The terrain is reminiscent to areas in the Grand Canyon, with sparse vegetation and brightly colored lizards sunning on flat rocks.
Camp tonight is at the base of a tall rock cliff, on a fairly broad, flat plain on the west side of the river. The team joined our “arrieros” (mule drivers) to dine on grilled steaks above the banks of the river. Temperatures were warm, but not too hot today; however, it sounds like it cooled off quite a bit after the sun passed behind the west rim of the valley.
Tomorrow they will hike up along the west side of the river for another half mile before crossing a bridge to the east side, which they will follow for about 8 miles to their next camp.
We’ll keep you posted!