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Confluencia, Plaza de Mulas

by on Sep.24, 2012, under Sports

We got up early to get this long day started. Today is going to be an 18-mile hike. The trail was good and the scenery spectacular. The valley is immense and looks like the Karakorum. The trail was easy for about three hours and then it got rocky and difficult.

The weather also turned cold and windy. The valley was narrow and it was obvious we had to cross the river by wading through it. Stan tested some rocks and then slipped in the river. Now with soaked boots he waded across and put on his dry wading shoes. I changed to my old Nikes and stepped through the icy cold stream. Wow, that was a wake up! We were about two hours away from Plaza de Mulas.

We continued and of course the weather was getting worse and started to snow. Great, poor Stan has his wading shoes on and all our warm clothes, i.e. gloves went up with the mules. We didn’t worry too much because spare socks make for wonderful mittens. We finally came to the old Plaza de Mulas. It was really snowing hard now and we weren’t too sure where the mules had taken our stuff.

Stan and I decided that since it was our wedding anniversary it would be nice to treat ourselves to a night at the highest hotel in the world.

A man told us it was close and would only take 10 minutes. Don’t ever believe the phrase “10 minutes”. Up and down, up and down, we finally found the hotel after 30 minutes. The hotel is huge. I was shocked at the size. We asked for a room with a private bath and hot water. Other rooms are available also with no bath. Our rooms cost $30 each and are sparse but comfortable. Word is out that the weather is getting worse. Nobody really knows but that’s how conversation is made on a mountain. People seem to be summiting anyway.

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