Peru 2005 Day Eleven: Inca Trail

by Kara on August 1, 2005

When we sat down for breakfast, the trouble began. Just looking at the food turned my stomach. I managed to eat a cracker and saved one of the rolls for later in the day. I just made sure our water bottles were full and figured my appetite would return at lunch. With my cold and the fact that I am not in the world’s greatest shape, the morning was a struggle for me. However, although it was definitely harder than I expected, I didn’t see any reason that things would get any worse. Clearly, I lack psychic abilities.

What a view. And this is what it looked like in every direction. Beautiful!

What a view. And this is what it looked like in every direction. Beautiful!

Despite struggling with the hike, I couldn’t help but be in awe of where I was. Everything was beautiful – mountains, trees, flowers, birds. Plus there were Inca terraces and ruins all over. I’ve never seen such a magical place before.

Claire and Eric kept up a pretty good pace, while I lagged behind. Stephen had to slow his pace for me. It was only during the last couple hours of that day’s trek that the altitude and strenuousness of the hike hit Claire too. We took turns stopping and resting, and finally made it up to the campsite about an hour or so before dinner.

Honestly, I don’t know how the porters do it. These guys carry about 30 kilos (66 pounds!) on their backs up and down the mountains. They bring all the tents, the trekkers’ duffel bags, a portable toilet, a kitchen with all the food, a dining table, chairs and a dining tent, among other things. I had trouble with my own daypack.

This is one of the many porters we saw loaded down on the Inca Trail.

This is one of the many porters we saw loaded down on the Inca Trail.

Anyway, I staggered into camp and right into my sleeping bag. As would become my habit practically every time we stopped to rest, I threw up (thank goodness for Ziploc bags). It was not particularly cold, but I could not stop shivering in my sleeping bag, and apparently Claire had the same problem. Narciso brought me a hot water bottle and I finally managed to warm up a little bit. I tried to drink water as much as possible to stay hydrated, but nothing agreed with my stomach. I managed to fall asleep, but I think Stephen and I both slept quite restlessly.

Check out more of Stephen’s pictures of Peru.

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