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  • Day161

    Machu Pichu Day 1

    May 7, 2016 in Peru ⋅ ⛅ 20 °C

    So i wake at 3am and feel really stressed, I am so anxious about the trek that I have barely slept all night. I check and recheck my bag , worried I might have forgotten somethingthat i may need. Een when i turn on the light Mark remains fast asleep and doesnt even stir. Once im sure i ve got everything I kiss Mark goodbye and go to reception tosit and have a cigaette before the bus arrives to take us to the start of the trail. The rest of the 'Alpaca Family' are already on the bus and with a brief good morning to everyone we are on our way. After an hour and a half drive we arrive at our first pitstop.at ............. to buy our last minute essentials and our last civilised toilet break . The bus continues from here and takes us to the 82km oint where everybody gets off the bus and we wait for the guys to sort breakfast. We are one of the first groups on sight and get to set up before it starts to get really busy. we are served eggs tomatos and bread with a wonderful fresh fruit salad and numerous hot drinks. The way the porters and chefs arrange everything is something to be marvelled at, and im shocked at how old some of these guys are, or maybe thats what the trek does to you ? As we finish our breakfast everything is dismantled and packed into the biggest rucksacks ive ever seen. When I ask how heavy they are we are told they are 35kgs , but that 10 years ago there were no rules and these guys use to carry upto 60kg. Before we start the trek we have a group photo taken and make our way to clear 'passport control' , where our passports are checked against our permits. There is still a person missing, but we are told they will catch us up. The rickety bridge takes us across the river to start our first incline of the trek. We wind our way up with beatiful views of the valley taking regular breaks and going at our own pace , but sticking together as a family. Across the way we see our first Inka site a couple of hours in, following the river but ascending upwards. We arrive at another Inca site an hour later and were given a full explanation about how the Inkas evolved, but because there is nothing written we dont really know the exact dates . We are given time to relax and take some photos before makingour way to the lunch spot. As we trek the porters basically run past us and when we arrive lunch is nearly prepared. I have really struggled with my breathing and with the biggest bag of cocoa leaves I deceide to take the plunge and chew! Lunch is served consisting of tortilla served with advocado dips followed by soup, then trout and potatoes with vegetables washed down by peppermint tea. After such a big meal i feel like i could sleep for a week and as i finish a mule literally has his face in the window. Dan has joined us, but literally arived in Cusco this morning and is feeling a little bit worse for wear, and hes not the only one. I have a moment where i doubt my ability to carry on, but i refuse to quit and as i go outside there is a telephone which i pretend to call 999 on. Everybody laughs and spirits seem to be picking up. We ass the first camp site at Huayllabamba and i so wish i was stopping here, but we will trek to a higher point to get a head start in the morning. After 7 hours we reach Wayllabamba and everybody takes a rest including our 16 porters. I share my cocoa leaves around and from here its another hour of uphill again. Noriko and i have a similar pace and so we team up together for the last haul, but as we are walking along we look up ans spot people walking up a huge hill in front of us and realise that this is the way to camp. We push on , but i am mentally and physically exhausted, and as we slowly make our way up we cross the river and the porters are here collecting huge kegs of water to take back to camp. When we arrive our tents are set up and the dinner is already being cooked. There is a lady here selling beer so i buy a bottle and smoke a couple of cigarettes just taking in what today has been about. Once everyone arrives we all praise each other on our first days achievment before all being given a bowl of warm water a flannel and squirter soap to get washed before dinner. We have an introducing session where we get to find out the name, age and a little about each member of the supporting team, as well as introducing ourselves. We are served snacks of popcorn and hot chocolate whilst being debriefed on tomorrow's expectations. Dinner is served and is absolutely amazing, but once everyone has eaten we all hit the sack within minutes. Can tomorrow really be harder??Read more