Wednesday, 9 December 2015
Refuge Tinquilco and Cerro San Sebastian
Patricio had always wanted breakfast to be at 9.30, and so it was. There was no hurry though, as the cloud was down. It was expected to clear later. All very relaxed and in the true style of being on holiday.
By 10.45 Sue and I were on our way to climb the highest nearby peak, Cerro San Sebastian, 1905 metres, and David and Anne had set off on the Laguna El Toro circuit that we walked yesterday.
The cloud was very lazy. It didn't dissipate. We ascended 1100 metres in beautiful surroundings without seeing very much beyond a few metres. The flowers were nice. So were the beetles. Sue wasn't so keen on the large hairy Araňas pollos, which look like giant tarantulas and stand on their hind legs with a menacing air. They are quite cuddly really.
Lunch at about 2 pm was on a sharp wooded ridge before the final steep ascent towards the summit. The hills around here seem to have a habit of starting with nicely graded paths and finishing with something of a thrutch.
This one finished with a sharp rocky ridge that finished me at 1750 metres. Sue got up another 50 metres before turning back. A young local Chilean couple returning from the summit told us it was just another 500 metres away, and they kindly offered to accompany us. But whilst the top was just about clear of cloud, they said there was no real view, so we decided to continue on down.
Some views did at last appear, but the summit remained in cloud until 5 pm.
An uneventful descent saw us back at the refuge at 6 pm after a 19 km outing, with plenty of time for R & R before another excellent meal from Patricio in the company of Anne and David, and Cecilia and Jan, a French couple who live in Sydney and are on a long trip.
We later debated the difference between a 'traveller' and a 'tourist'. Does it matter?
Flowers and a 4 inch diameter spider (4)
Sue nears the summit
A view from the descent
Dinner with Patricio