Backpacking El Choro in Bolivia: Part 2

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My second day on my backpacking excursion through Bolivia’s outdoors began early. I work just after the sun came up and packed up my gear. I ate breakfast and started onward.

By this point the mountains at the beginning of my hike were far behind me and ahead of me lay jungle.

IMG_5217The air was moist, the sun was warm, and the river I hike along was loud. This part of the hike did not change as much as the first day. The jungle go more dense, and the stone foot path I walked on before was now hardly a trail through the vegetation.

There were a few wooden suspension bridges during this day. One of them was broken, and I had to hop stones to get to the other side.

An interesting thing I noticed being on the side of such large mountains, yet in such thick jungle was the impact that direct sunlight had on the density of the plants. Because I was heading North, the sun was alway in front of me no matter what time of day.

When I was on the parts of the mountain that stuck out, and was in direct sunlight, the trees were less dense and the plants were less green. However, when I moved into the gullies of the peaks, where water gathered on its way down to the river that was now far below me and the plant-life was shaded by the peaks, the jungle was the most alive.

IMG_5221The air would get cool and stick to your skin, and the plants would become so thick that it was almost dark.

It was in these area that I felt the most out of my comfort zone, and where I nearly stepped on a bright green snake that was crossing the trail.

Eventually, I arrived at a small grassy open area that had some wooden chairs and a few shaded areas next to a small hut.

Here I was able to stop for a rest and eat some lunch. Various-sized chickens ran about and spent a lot of time trying to eat the large flies that would land on me.

IMG_5213At this small hut was a lady and her two children. There was also a friendly cat and a bunny. I was a bit surprised to see all of these animals and it made me think of home.

After lunch and letting my feet dry in the afternoon sun, I carried on, making my way around each peak in the sun and then entering into the dark areas where two mountains would meet.

Finally, the sun began to get low in the sky and I stopped at another small grassy area that consistent of a small store that sold eggs and a few small huts where people lived. In the grass area was a fire pit and an obvious place to set up a tent.

I set my tent up, ate some dinner, and used a bar of soap to wash my dirty clothes in a rudimentary piping system that had been set up to draw water from the stream that ran down the hill nearby.

With the last bit of daylight left, I read a bit of my book and fell asleep quickly. I was exhausted from the day of hiking.

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