Wednesday, July 11, 2012
As most of you know, I live in Ecuador. Ecuador has loads of volcanoes. (NERD WARNING) The peak of one of them, Chimborazo, is the point on Earth farthest from the core of the planet. That's right -- even farther than Everest, which is the highest point above sea level. That's because the Earth isn't perfectly round. It's an oblate spheroid with the bulge at the equator. (END NERD WARNING).
So, well, climbing volcanoes is big here. The one I can see out my office window is Pichincha, one of the easiest to climb. Some of them are so difficult that only very experienced climbers should do it, but Pichincha is definitely in my reach. My husband and I nearly made it to the top a couple of years ago but had to head down when the hail storm started. That was a fun climb, though. We ran into some young men touring with a singing group from the States and they treated us to a serenade not far below the caldera.
A group of people from my organisation are going to be climbing it on July 29 and I'm really looking forward to it. I'm going to make it this time as I'm much more fit and I would have made it last time if not for the hail. Mind you, it's not easy. I live at 9,400 feet (2865m) and Pichincha is 15,696 feet (4,784 m). I remember the last time I climbed it, I had a hard time catching my breath after the first hour or so climbing.
See you on the summit!
By the way, Pichincha is active. In 1999 it covered Quito in ash.