Friday, 27 February 2015

Machu Picchu: Day Three

Flying through the mountains had long been on my bucket list and on day 3 of my Machu Picchu trek I got the chance to do it. It involved getting up reasonably early and going through all the boring safety crap - safety talks, getting fitted with harnesses, and being taught how to zip-line without crashing to our deaths (don't get me wrong - I know all of these things are terribly necessary, but I was just chomping at the bit to get going). We met up with our entire zip-lining 'crew', and a good portion were German again. (I have met so many Germans on this trip I started to think I'd flown to Germany by mistake, as I might have mentioned before). However, it was fun to chat in German to some new people, as always.

A few of the group
All kitted out and ready to fly

After being shown how to stay alive and having taken all the obligatory pictures, we then zipped our first line. As you can see, the views were incredible: there were mountains, valleys, and bright blue skies. I was a sweaty betty already when that picture above was being taken and it was only 11 am. 

It was a relatively slow process - there were five zip-lines and quite a few of us to get through each time, so there was more waiting around than I had originally anticipated, but whizzing through the air at such a height and in such beautiful surroundings was definitely worth it. I have been zip-lining a few times before, but only at treetop climbing centres; the lines were nowhere near as long or high, and the scenery nowhere near as amazing.

For most of the time we were in the sit-down position as shown above - some people turned upside down mid-zip, but I was just too chicken. However, on the last zip-line we were given the opportunity to fly 'like Superman' (basically on our fronts with our arms and legs extended). I jumped at the chance to do this one, and flew onto the last platform in style, or maybe just looking like a constipated ape.

The rest of the day consisted of hiking and holding an adorable puppy:

Our last stop was Aguas Calientes, a town just below the Machu Picchu site, and seeing it appear in the distance was wonderful. That night my achy limbs and I were pleased to crawl into bed early and become unconscious for a few hours before our 4am start.

(On a side note, it's completely gross but I just thought I would share the state of my leg at the end of the day. It came as a bit of a shock as I'd been wearing trousers, but they were obviously not barrier enough. Surprisingly the bites were never itchy, but they took a good while to clear up).

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