Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Peru Revisited

In spite of the crooked cops, I am still very happy to be back in Peru.  The vibes are better and for the most part the scenery is as varied and moreso.  I hope I did not overstate the business with the insurance and the cops, as I think that two recent cases of crooked cops in my own province, one with a Vancouver cop selling weed, and the other where an RCMP officer killed a motorcyclist while driving drunk are better examples of a failure in the system.  Too often we ignore the errors in our own house, and point fingers elsewhere...


Puno Centro

Getting some of the mud removed..boots and face...

I decided to visit some Pre-Inca ruins at Sullistani.  The site was off the main road from Puno north,  and I was the first visitor at the site.

 The skies had cleared, and I was thinking that a good day of sun was in front of me...

Resident herd of sheep and the lama buddies..

Four  funery structures  overlooking a small lake

 The largest funery structure at the top of the site.  Lightening has struck this a number of times, before lightening rods were installed on the site.  Also, sismos, or earthquakes have damaged some of the ruins on-site.
 Lots of carved and hewn rocks about the site..


This circle of stones was determined to be of the Incan era, whereas much of the other constructs were of Pre-Incan times, with the people orginating from the Wari culture..


The inside view of the large funery structure.  The royalty were buried in these tombs..







The tomb had a dragon carved into the face of one of the rocks...





Other funery tombs on the site






A view towards the west from the top of the site...


To me, the planning and organization required to carve and place this huge stones is amazing...


Kind of looks like I would imagine Celtic Britain or Ireland to look like...


The ancient terraces, which were used as a basis for farming, can be seen in the hills surrounding the lake.  There must have been a very large population here at one time...

This guy is the resident watch cat.  He looked up from his cat nap, yawned at another tourist, and resumed his post...
 The watch rooster was much better at keeping an eye on the tourist..

Larry the Lama was snoozing in the sun..


It was still early in the morning, and between my map and Mr. Garmin, I thought that some sideroads would get me in the general direction of North....


Sure enough, there was some great riding and whenever  I got lost or turned around, some Peruvian would get me turned around.  I did have a few hairy moments when mud and single bike tracks were  the only options.  Blondy lost her shine and regained that mud-look...
I had to regain the main highway for awhile, and that went fine until I came upon an accident where a pickup had smashed into the front of a bus.  A few kilometers up the road, I stopped for cocoa tea, and the guy said that four people had been killed in the truck...he also pointed me in the right direction for Chivas, which was my destination.  I wanted to see the condors fly, and also to avoid the main highway.  I had been cruising between 3800 meters and 4100 meters for most of the day, and I was feeling acclimatized to the higher altitudes for the most part.


Obviously, I had spoken too soon about the good weather.  The road climbed and climbed and soon the elevation peaked out at 4800 and something meters.  I ran throught an hour or so of fog and slow driving.  When it cleared for a bit, everything was white and very Canadian-like!



 As they say, what goes up, must come down...I haven't ridden so many twisties since Ecuador, and the drop in elevation was most welcome, as I was freezing cold, and while my gear was keeping me dry, hands and feet were very cold...




I eventually arrived at my destination and found a hostal and a warm shower.  The condors will be there tommorow...

My route (more or less) from Puno towards the Condors..




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