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    [post_author] => 39
    [post_date] => 2009-07-22 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2009-07-22 06:00:00
    [post_content] => 

When we last wrote, we were leaving Sorata, setting out into the unknown.

What we have seen, experienced, felt andbeen witness to since then is, forgive us, largely indescribeable. But we will give it a go anyway:

Moving on from Sorata, we spent three wonderful days on the tranquil shores of Lake Titicaca in Santiago de Okola. There, we were warmly received by host families and we had great opportunities to learn about local culture and traditions. We tried our hands at weaving, learned about the many varieties of quinoa, and spent the evenings gazing up at the Southern stars, learning to identify many different constellations.

We left Santiago de Okola a week ago and set out on a long bus journey northward to Pelechuco--the gateway to the Cordillera Apolobamba. We all breathed a little heavier as our bus crossed over a 16,000 foot pass before descending into the Pelechuco Valley below. It was only then that we realized that we were soon to have to climb to that same altitude (and higher!) on our own two feet!

We traveled for six days and crossed over four 16,000+ foot passes. Our higest pass, Sunchuli, we reached on our third day. Standing at 16,700 feet with the whole group still smiling was absolutely one of the highlights of our trip so far. The views of the valleys in both directions were breathtaking. Literally.

As it is mid-winter down here in the southern hemisphere, it was VERY cold at night. We woke up with ice on our tents every morning. The trek was certainly physically challenging, but I think we all agree that it was worth the effort.

We now find ourselves in a small mountain town called Charazani. We just returned from bathing in the local hotsprings, which could not have been better timed!

Tomorrow we are heading out on our river trip, and we plan to travel into the Amazon Basin before starting a gradual ascent back up to La Paz in a little over a week. So much has happened in recent days, but there is still so much to come!

We hope this finds you all well! We'll be back in touch in a few days.

Love from the Andes,

Helen, Maro & Andy

[post_title] => Following the Ruta Kallawaya [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => following-the-ruta-kallawaya [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2009-07-22 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2009-07-22 06:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://yakyak.chandigarhsoftware.com/?p=50672 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 418 [name] => Bolivia, Summer 2009 [slug] => bolivia-summer-2009 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 418 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 249 [count] => 36 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 25.1 [cat_ID] => 418 [category_count] => 36 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Bolivia, Summer 2009 [category_nicename] => bolivia-summer-2009 [category_parent] => 249 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/summer-2009/bolivia-summer-2009/ ) ) [category_links] => Bolivia, Summer 2009 )

Bolivia, Summer 2009

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Following the Ruta Kallawaya

Instructor Team,Bolivia, Summer 2009

Description

When we last wrote, we were leaving Sorata, setting out into the unknown. What we have seen, experienced, felt andbeen witness to since then is, forgive us, largely indescribeable. But we will give it a go anyway: Moving on from Sorata, we spent three wonderful days on the tranquil shores of Lake Titicaca in Santiago […]

Posted On

07/22/09

Author

Instructor Team

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    [post_date] => 2009-07-20 00:00:00
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    [post_content] => 

Instructors and Students on the Bolivian Trip:

Thank you so much for the letters and the pictures. It makes it easier than just using my imagination for what is up with Justin and his new friends in Bolivia. I have not been without ear reach of Justin for his whole 17 years and so it feels unusual for him to be so unavailable. But the excitement of this trip and his adventures far outweighs any feelings of loss. It seems like the experiences that the Bolivia team is having are life changing like I thought they will be. I'm happy for Justin to come back changed and also maybe I'm not the only one hoping for a little humilty and thankfulness for all that we have in this well endowed country of America. I laughed to hear Justin caught the chicken.

Love,

Mother

Deborah Ramaker

www.handsofpeace.biz

[post_title] => Reflections on a child being in bolivia [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => reflections-on-a-child-being-in-bolivia [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2009-07-20 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://yakyak.chandigarhsoftware.com/?p=50722 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 418 [name] => Bolivia, Summer 2009 [slug] => bolivia-summer-2009 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 418 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 249 [count] => 36 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 25.1 [cat_ID] => 418 [category_count] => 36 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Bolivia, Summer 2009 [category_nicename] => bolivia-summer-2009 [category_parent] => 249 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/summer-2009/bolivia-summer-2009/ ) ) [category_links] => Bolivia, Summer 2009 )

Bolivia, Summer 2009

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Reflections on a child being in bolivia

Deborah Ramaker,Bolivia, Summer 2009

Description

Instructors and Students on the Bolivian Trip: Thank you so much for the letters and the pictures. It makes it easier than just using my imagination for what is up with Justin and his new friends in Bolivia. I have not been without ear reach of Justin for his whole 17 years and so it […]

Posted On

07/20/09

Author

Deborah Ramaker

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    [post_date] => 2009-07-20 00:00:00
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On Sunday afternoon we received an update from our group in Bolivia who are currently exploring the wild and remote regions of Northwestern Bolivia in the Apalobamba Mountains. All group members are happy, healthy, and baffled by the intense beauty and ruggedness of their surrounding terrain. They were on the fourth day of their trek and had just passed over a 16,700 ft pass with no altitude issues affecting their experience. It's been exausting, cold, and tons of fun reports Helen, and we wish them an equally inspiring and challenging continuation on their trek. We can expect to hear from them again on the 22nd of July before they arrive on the 25th in Guaranay, where they will have access to internet.

[post_title] => Satelite Phone Check-in [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => satelite-phone-check-in [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2009-07-20 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://yakyak.chandigarhsoftware.com/?p=50704 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 418 [name] => Bolivia, Summer 2009 [slug] => bolivia-summer-2009 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 418 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 249 [count] => 36 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 25.1 [cat_ID] => 418 [category_count] => 36 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Bolivia, Summer 2009 [category_nicename] => bolivia-summer-2009 [category_parent] => 249 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/summer-2009/bolivia-summer-2009/ ) ) [category_links] => Bolivia, Summer 2009 )

Bolivia, Summer 2009

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Satelite Phone Check-in

Dragons Administration,Bolivia, Summer 2009

Description

On Sunday afternoon we received an update from our group in Bolivia who are currently exploring the wild and remote regions of Northwestern Bolivia in the Apalobamba Mountains. All group members are happy, healthy, and baffled by the intense beauty and ruggedness of their surrounding terrain. They were on the fourth day of their trek […]

Posted On

07/20/09

Author

Dragons Administration

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    [post_author] => 39
    [post_date] => 2009-07-12 00:00:00
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    [post_content] => 

Greetings once again from Sorata!

We are reaching the end of our time here in Sorata. This afternoon, we hosted a "despedida" (farewell) party for the families at the Program House. We shared traditional dishes and completed a beautiful art project as a gift for the house. The students worked tirelessly yesterday and all day today preparing. We created our own Dragons version of the indigenous flag, locally known as the "Wiphala", and all of the kids in our homestay families helped us to decorate their own square of the flag. It turned out beautifully, and will proudly be dispalyed in the Program House for many programs to come!

Tomorrow we set off on our long journey. We will travel first to a small fishing village on the shores of the legendary Lake Titicaca called Santiago de Okola. After spending three days acclimatizing and learning about the community, we will set off for Pelechuco, a small town in the majestic Apolobamba Mountain Range. From there, we will set out on a seven day trek over high Andean passes, through remote Quechua and Ayamara villages and finally to Charazani, where we hope to relax for a bit in the hotsprings! From Charazani, we will begin the next chapter of our adventure: floating down a Amazonian tributary into the Bolivian lowlands! Following our time on the river, we will return to the Yungas (transition zone between the Andes and the Amazon) to take part in a few days of service projects in a small agrarian community. We will then make our triumphant return to La Paz at the end of July.

Please bear with us in our absence from technology. We will be largely unable to access the internet for the next two and a half weeks. We cannot wait to share stories of our adventures with you once we return to the city on July 30th. We will be in regular contact with the Boulder office throughout our journey.

We hope this finds you all well, as we prepare to go into the Bolivian wild!

Paz,

Andres, Elena y Maro

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Bolivia, Summer 2009

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Chau Sorata

Andy, Helen y Maro,Bolivia, Summer 2009

Description

Greetings once again from Sorata! We are reaching the end of our time here in Sorata. This afternoon, we hosted a "despedida" (farewell) party for the families at the Program House. We shared traditional dishes and completed a beautiful art project as a gift for the house. The students worked tirelessly yesterday and all day […]

Posted On

07/12/09

Author

Andy, Helen y Maro

WP_Post Object
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    [post_date] => 2009-07-11 00:00:00
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    [post_content] => 

Well our homestays in Sorata are pretty much done now. I have to say, it was a pretty cool but tranquil week. I had Spanish lessons every morning, to which I´d have to sprintwhile out of breathafter pouring ice cold water on myself. I feel like my Spanish hasgotten a lot better and it´s really coming back to me after spending 4 years of my childhood in Spain. I´ve become good friends with my family members and the family members of my neighbors Nick and Tolu. We had a couple of fun soccer games and abasketball game too (which I obviously dominated). Yesterday,me, Nick and Justin climbed a mountain in Justin´s neighborhood. It didn´t take too long, only about an hour and a half. It was really annoying at some points though because we took about 6wrong turns in thespanof about 4 minutes. A kindly old farmerpointed out theright direction for us. Tomorrow all of us head off for another homestay in another town and there is a whole ensemble of fun activities on the road ahead, including an Amazonian boat trip and a solid week long trek. We´ll beout of touch for a good 18 days or something.

PS I ate a caterpillar today (yum yum [...not really...])because I was gettingsick of eating potatoes for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

[post_title] => Homestay Week [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => homestay-week-2 [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2009-07-11 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://yakyak.chandigarhsoftware.com/?p=50892 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 418 [name] => Bolivia, Summer 2009 [slug] => bolivia-summer-2009 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 418 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 249 [count] => 36 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 25.1 [cat_ID] => 418 [category_count] => 36 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Bolivia, Summer 2009 [category_nicename] => bolivia-summer-2009 [category_parent] => 249 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/summer-2009/bolivia-summer-2009/ ) ) [category_links] => Bolivia, Summer 2009 )

Bolivia, Summer 2009

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Homestay Week

Arjun Dheer,Bolivia, Summer 2009

Description

Well our homestays in Sorata are pretty much done now. I have to say, it was a pretty cool but tranquil week. I had Spanish lessons every morning, to which I´d have to sprintwhile out of breathafter pouring ice cold water on myself. I feel like my Spanish hasgotten a lot better and it´s really […]

Posted On

07/11/09

Author

Arjun Dheer

WP_Post Object
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    [post_date] => 2009-07-08 00:00:00
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    [post_content] => 

Dear friends,

Greetings from Sorata! We are right in the middle of our week-long homestays in this beautiful mountain town and so far, so good!

We returned last Saturday afternoon from our first trek to Laguna Chilata. We ascended nearly a vertical mile up out of Sorata to a final altitude of 13,800 feet! This was no walk in the park, but it felt great to stretch our legs, our lungs and every single muscle in our bodies. This group of students truly is exceptional. There were no complaints, just encouragement and light-hearted jokes as we pushed on together. For some, this was their first time hiking, which makes the feat even more impressive. We thoroughly enjoyed hanging out at the campsite together, huddled around the stove, drinking hot chocolate and scarfing down some delicious quinoa stew! We awoke to beautiful views of the surrounding valley and ice on our tents!

On Sunday morning, we experienced a very warm welcome from all of the homestay families. We are divided into two groups, with one group of students living with families in the Villa Rosa neighborhood in Sorata, and the other living with the families of Tutuacaja, a smaller village about 20 minutes away by foot.

The first days with the families were challenging, as we began to immerse ourselves in a new world. Everyone is working hard at getting to know their families and their new communities and they are really enjoying the opportunities to come together as a group to share their own stories and experiences. We have been baking bread and milking cows in the early morning hours, peeling potatoes and playing with the kids of the village at night, and playing cards and watching telenovelas with our families.

We are also spending our time in Sorata this week working on improving our Spanish with two fabulous teachers from La Paz, and diving into our Independent Study Projects, which will include, among other things: Learning to play the charango, learning traditional dances, studying the traditional uses of coca and other medicinal plants and studying the role of women in contemporary Bolivian society.

Today, we have also reached another milestone: our last student has finally caved in, and is taking a shower—the first one since we left Coroico well over a week ago! Everyone is in good spirits, and although a few tummies have had some rumbles the past few days, it is nothing some good rest and some matecito won’t take care of.

Thanks to all of you out there following us on our journey so far!

Un abrazo fuerte desde los Andes. [post_title] => Waliki [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => waliki [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2009-07-08 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://yakyak.chandigarhsoftware.com/?p=51017 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 418 [name] => Bolivia, Summer 2009 [slug] => bolivia-summer-2009 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 418 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 249 [count] => 36 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 25.1 [cat_ID] => 418 [category_count] => 36 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Bolivia, Summer 2009 [category_nicename] => bolivia-summer-2009 [category_parent] => 249 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/summer-2009/bolivia-summer-2009/ ) ) [category_links] => Bolivia, Summer 2009 )

Bolivia, Summer 2009

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Waliki

Helen, Maro & Andy,Bolivia, Summer 2009

Description

Dear friends, Greetings from Sorata! We are right in the middle of our week-long homestays in this beautiful mountain town and so far, so good! We returned last Saturday afternoon from our first trek to Laguna Chilata. We ascended nearly a vertical mile up out of Sorata to a final altitude of 13,800 feet! This […]

Posted On

07/8/09

Author

Helen, Maro & Andy

WP_Post Object
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    [post_date] => 2009-07-06 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00
    [post_content] => 

hellodar,

the past couple of days have been a blur of new people, misunderstandings, and LOTS of food. Yesterday, we started our week long homestays outside of Sorata. I was taken home by my sister and immediately was given a plate of meat, rice, potato, and fried egg. I talked to my sisters for a while and found out i have 4 sisters, 3 brothers, and a niece. My little brother, José, took me up to the soccer field to play a pretty funny and interesting game of fútball. After that, the group of kids sheperded Jennie, Liza, and me up the hill, where we stole fruit, and picked flowers and other plants for a market game. After a jouney to Sorata, 30 minutes away, and more food, I played some more soccer and then had dinner. During dinner i met my homestay mom and dad, and then was shuttled off to have a leaf bonfire and party with the kids. That night was filed with crazy stunts from the kids and fun games. That was a very interesting first day in my homestay. That´s all for now folks,

Adam

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Bolivia, Summer 2009

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Home Stays

Adam Schachner,Bolivia, Summer 2009

Description

hellodar, the past couple of days have been a blur of new people, misunderstandings, and LOTS of food. Yesterday, we started our week long homestays outside of Sorata. I was taken home by my sister and immediately was given a plate of meat, rice, potato, and fried egg. I talked to my sisters for a […]

Posted On

07/6/09

Author

Adam Schachner

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    [post_author] => 39
    [post_date] => 2009-07-06 00:00:00
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    [post_content] => 

We have just spent the last few days in the beautiful city of Sorota. We have done a few things in this city, we trekked for 2 days about a mile in altitude above where the city we started in is located. We played many games to get through the 4 hour hike there, and the 4 hour hike back. We began our homestays yesterday. It is truly awesome for us all to be in different families but be involved in the same community of the village we are staying in. Alot of our day consists running around with children and working on community projects. Many aspects of our group make our group bearable, like Arjun´s constant sarcasm and humor. It´s kindve rubbing off on all of us. We have really fun group activities and group checkins to keep the group dynamic flowing though we are all over the city. Soon we will be starting our independent service projects and spanish lessons. I think I am going to take churango (spelling?) lessons, a traditional boliviana instrumente.

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Bolivia, Summer 2009

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Bolivia es bueno

Justin Moore,Bolivia, Summer 2009

Description

We have just spent the last few days in the beautiful city of Sorota. We have done a few things in this city, we trekked for 2 days about a mile in altitude above where the city we started in is located. We played many games to get through the 4 hour hike there, and […]

Posted On

07/6/09

Author

Justin Moore

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    [post_author] => 39
    [post_date] => 2009-07-05 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00
    [post_content] => 

So I wrote a long, detailed Yak Yak last week in Coroico and posted it, but for some reason it didn´t get through...that´s kind of annoying.

Needless to say, all of us made it to Bolivia alive!I don´t want to recap and rewriteeverything I wrote while in Coroico, but pretty muchwe spent a couple of days acclimating ourselves in LaPaz and experiencing all its sights and sounds. After that, we went toCoroico, a beautiful subtropical town with the most colorful parrots ever.Right now I´m in an internet cafe in Sorata, a smallish mountain town. I just met my host family and explored the towna bit on my own. The familyconsists of a tienda, two parents, four kids, an uncle, me, 6 chickens, a cat, and two dogs. It should be a fun week.

We got back from a pretty intense and rugged trek up to Lago Chilata (spelling?) and back to the program house in Sorata. I had a mild headache for a whiledue to the altitude (close to 14,000 feet!)but other than that I did fine. Everyone in the group completed the hike...it was a lot of fun and I got tons of sweet pictures above the treeline. I tried catching chickens with my bare hands along with some otherfolks in the group but the only one who was successful was Justin. He has past experience with chicken handling anyway, though.After the home stay we head off on a weeklong trek so I´ll try topost again before the trek.

THE SCENERY HERE IS AMAZING,

Arjun

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Bolivia, Summer 2009

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Checking In

Arjun Dheer,Bolivia, Summer 2009

Description

So I wrote a long, detailed Yak Yak last week in Coroico and posted it, but for some reason it didn´t get through…that´s kind of annoying. Needless to say, all of us made it to Bolivia alive!I don´t want to recap and rewriteeverything I wrote while in Coroico, but pretty muchwe spent a couple of […]

Posted On

07/5/09

Author

Arjun Dheer

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    [ID] => 51188
    [post_author] => 39
    [post_date] => 2009-07-02 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00
    [post_content] => 

Greetings from Sorata!

We arrived in Sorata this afternoon after a long day of travel from Coroico. We had a fabulous day, despite the long hours in transit. As we gained altitude from Coroico, the air became more brisk and the mountains more jagged. We arrived mid morning in La Paz and all hungrily downed some delicious salteñas as we waited for our next bus to take us to Sorata. We we all glued to the windows on the stunning drive from La Paz, as we passed through the spawling city of El Alto, across the stark altiplano, in the shadow of the majestic snowcapped Illampu, and finally down into the lush valley where Sorata lies.

We spent the afternoon exploring the grounds of the beautiful program house and went shopping in the market for our first trek! We are leaving tomorrow morning for a two day, one night trek out of Sorata to the Laguna Chillata.

We will return midday on Saturday and will then gear up for our homestays, which begin on Sunday morning!

Everyone is healthy, happy and strong. We are looking forward to stretching our legs after so many days of traveling!

Tune in next time for tales of our trek and our first days in Sorata!

Paz.

Maro, Andy y Helen

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Bolivia, Summer 2009

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Sorata!

Instructor Team,Bolivia, Summer 2009

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Greetings from Sorata! We arrived in Sorata this afternoon after a long day of travel from Coroico. We had a fabulous day, despite the long hours in transit. As we gained altitude from Coroico, the air became more brisk and the mountains more jagged. We arrived mid morning in La Paz and all hungrily downed […]

Posted On

07/2/09

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Instructor Team

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