Day 2 was supposed to be harder than the first with our summit before lunch. Another early morning, we were to be out on the trail by 6am. Our caballeros served us coca tea in our tents (well, most of us). And after breakfast we were out....we were all given the option to hire a horse if we wanted, but we were feeling up to it...so there we were...”We're Doin' It!” We were forewarned about 'the serpent” the ass-kicking 7 cornered switchback climb we were to make...although I counted 12?? The weather was much cooler, which makes climbing mountains a little easier. With 15 of us we could get pretty spread out, up to a mile, but eventually with stops and breaks we would gather back together....and eventually together we made it to the top. One of our breaks was at a little alpine lake where I guide gave us some background on Incan rituals and ceremonies, and their love and worship of the mountains or apus as they called them. Once at the top we split up a little, Victor taking 10 over to another spot, where the rest of us opted to head down and wait on the trail. We truly had wonderful weather...clear up to the peak, but not long after we started our descent the rain came in. It started out sweet and soft, but by the time we made it another hour down to our lunch spot we were all soaked...even with the rain gear! Our amazing and stalwart chefs managed to prepare a great lunch in a downpour only under umbrellas! But our luck would prove to be best, when by the time we were finished with lunch the rain would lighted to a mist....however, we still had another good 5 hours ahead of us, downhill on a rocky and now muddy trail....yay!! This was my hardest day by far, not just with the climb, I think the downhill was harder on me...by the time this caboose strolled into camp my legs and feet we so tired. But this campground had beer!!! not that I had the energy to enjoy it, after a couple sips, I skipped dinner and went to bed!
Salkantay day 2, a set on Flickr.