05.05.2013 - 05.05.2013 70 °F
Today I was able to sleep as the start of my tour was not until 9. I will say the start of the tour was awkward as many groups got consolidated. Then, the bus actually stopped for gas before leaving town. At least the price was cheap. We first drove an hour south of Huaraz before ascending to cross the Cordillera Blanca.
There were snowcapped mountains mixing with the clouds in the distance.
We stopped quickly at Laguna Quesococha at 13,200 feet.
Then we went through a short tunnel at the pass 14,800 feet.
The road condition severely deteriorated the next hour and a half to Chavin.
On the way down there was scenic farmland on the green hills.
In Chavin we visited the museum and ruins of the ancient Callejon de Conchucos civilization. It is impressive that this civilization flourished 1200 to 1500 BC. There were many sculpted heads and this site has ties with religious ceremonies that used the hallucinagen San Pedro.
There were also a variety of other artifacts and carvings as well.
Then it was time to visit the ruins itself.
Another impressive feature was that we were able to go inside the ruins. This was the main ceremonial chamber.
Here were hallways to sleeping areas.
The outside grounds and stonework were impressive as well.
The columns in the center had carvings on them. The guide said that the wall to the right of the colums was black stone representing the Cordillera Negra and man while the wall to the left was white stone representing the Cordillera Blanca and woman.
Then it was 3 hours back to Huaraz followed by 2 hours of rest and then a night bus to Lima. Although I would have enjoyed hiking more in the spectacular Cordillera Blanca and spending more time here. I leave the Huaraz area, after the bad initial impression, with amazement for the mountains and happy to have visited it.