Day 3 (of 5) of the Salkantay trek.
Sleeping altitude: 1800m
We’d been given a late start of 6am, at 5.30 the knock on the door and the coca tea arrived. A quick breakfast and we were on the road by 7am. With wet shoes, damp clothes, ponchos and rain liners on our bags, the rain started to fall again as spirits dropped. With each initial step the promise of blue skys lingered. Slowly layer by layer we undressed, the sun cream came out and the mood changed. Committing to Inca symbols painted on our faces, we chose the difficult path as a group, following the highs and lows of the river. After dropping into the ravine, up and down we went, crossing landslides and flowing rivers on sheer cliff edges, until we’d hiked for 5 hours and a waiting van. Driven to our lunchtime destination, once well fed and hydrated, we continued the journey to our campsite for the night. The terrifyingly close drop of the cliff to the wheels of the van made for a heart stopping ride, particularly when it came to meeting oncoming traffic. Amazingly we made it to our waiting tents alive, and onward to the hot springs-our reward for distance hiked so far. Hours passed as we sat in the bath warm waters of the volcanic spring. Our biggest problem we faced was the unbearable attack of the rampant mosquitoes as we left the water. Aches eased, finally clean for the first time in 3 days, but swollen from our blood sucked wounds, we headed back to our campsite to enjoy a night of indulgence around the campfire. Beers flowing and Inca tequila, we were promised a well earned lie in of 7am! .
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