HOW COULD YOU SLEEP AMIDST THE EXCITEMENT OF WITNESSING A CONDOR IN FLIGHT? Me, Janelle, Aliocha and Robin decided to bike uphill to the Cruz del Condor before daybreak. This allowed us to arrive at the condor watching site before all the groups come in. The roads were steep and sometimes unpaved but the views were amazing!

We, the four brave souls went on cycling in hopes of reaching in time. That’s when all of a sudden we noticed a brief shadow hovering above us. Remember the catchphrase “It’s a bird, it’s a plane, no, it’s Superman”? But this time it is actually a bird, a damn big one! We almost screamed in ecstasy when we first saw the condors. They are humongous!

We were the first ones at the site. The early bike ride was definitely worthwhile because we had a full hour of peace and quiet with the condors. The locals say that the male condors are extremely loyal. When their female mate dies, they fly high into the sky, attempting suicide. However, when a male condor dies, the female will just find another mate. Smart girl!

WHILE TOUR BUSES ROLL IN, we biked ourselves downhill to the nearest town, Copaconanda, this time all 9 of us. So while the 4 of us biked up to the condor-sighting site, the company transported our other friends and their bikes here. We then had the chance to explore the rocky yet spectacular roads. (You can choose to stay on the van if you want to).

We ended our journey at a crowded hot spring. Not quite the luxury spa many are used to (plastic tents are used for changing), the warm water is the perfect remedy for our sore muscles. The group spent quality time with each other, before we go our separate ways.

* I recommend Colca Trek, an adventure tour company that offers a different approach to the Colca Canyon trip. Pricey but worth it.

 

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Out of breath photo pose

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The brave four that conquered the slopes!

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Close glimpse of the Andean Condor, one of the largest bird of flight

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Are you looking at me?

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Sitting with buddies. Staring at … birds

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Locals all dressed up in their traditional costumes

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It can be quite chilly up here

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Our expert funny guide

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Don’t doubt, that’s the place you go to pee.

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Trying exotic fruits with names we can’t pronounce

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Last stop – group chilling at the hot springs

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