Tuesday, 1 January 2013

Goodbye 2012

Greetings from Pucon, Chile. Pucon is a lovely little town amongst lakes, mountains and volcanoes in Central Chile. Yesterday most of our group went off today to climb Volcan Villarrica, a near 3k metre active volcano nearby that is covered in snow and ice all year round. I did think about joining them, but it was quite expensive and I am not a huge fan of climbing a mountain (or in this case a volcano) for the sake of climbing a mountain. 5+ hours of walking uphill does not really appeal. With this in mind I went zip lining instead, which involves zipping down steel cables in a harness. Surprisingly good fun and you got some great views above the tree tops. I was a bit concerned about my camera hitting a passing tree, so no photos I am afraid.

As there were many tired climbers, New Years Eve celebrations were quite tame, with a big barbeque and drinks in the campsite in town we are staying in. Most people were in bed by 01:00, although to be fair we had all got up at 06:00. I fancied a night off the red wine, so found some local stout in the supermarket. Not quite Guinness, but very drinkable. 

Today I have been back on the bike completing a 60 km round trip to Lake Caburgua. This is the only lake in the area with golden sands and is supposed to be the warmest around. Still not warm enough for a swim (think North Sea in the Summer), but I had a very pleasant paddle. The beach was busy with local families enjoying the warm weather and sunshine on New Years Day and it really is an incredible setting, with mountains all around. A combination of last night’s celebrations and a slow hire bike made the going hard work, but a nice ride none the less.

I hope everyone had a great New Years Eve and gave 2012 a fitting send off. London Olympics, first British winner of the Tour de France and a Brit finally winning a grand slam. All in all an excellent sporting year, although the less said about the weather the better!  


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