3rd August 2013
After beginning this blog post last night, the page fell into a puddle which had pooled in the porch of our tent. Now sheltered from the rain, and almost dry, I aim to tackle version 2 with conviction and do my best to keep it safe from the elements!
Our ‘Adventure Phase’ has presented us with a number of challenges already. We were acquainted with the rain early on in our quest but we’re adjusting quickly and are getting used to putting on damp clothes in the mornings.
On clear days we see tropical forests roll into misty mountain pathways and the majestic volcanoes that line the horizon. And cooking on trangias in the rain is made far more enjoyable when done in the shadow of ‘Volcan Arenal’ – the most famous in Costa Rica.
We’re fuelled up each incline by a sturdy combination of gritty perseverance, team work, and refried beans. The relentless chafing of damp clothes and slicing of rucksack shoulder straps is made worthwhile by the breath-taking views seen from just-navigated hills and the kindness of strangers. Plus we saw a monkey this morning.
Our breakfast routine has been steadily perfected. Treating ourselves to a lie-in of 4am, we’ve mastered the art of batch-cooking porridge whist semi-conscious, with rapid efficiency and precise cinnamon to milk powder ratios. Some wake up earlier than others, but we usually congregate at first light, about 5.15am to begin the day’s walking.
There’s not much personal space to be had on trek so it’s lucky that we’ve gelled into a tight-knit team in such a short amount of time. Trekking on Raleigh seems to be like a fast track to friendship. As a team we know so much about each other already (maybe a little too much) because together we’ve faced some pretty unusual situations in environments which are a little different from what we’re used to at home.
X-Ray 2’s Guanacaste Trek so far has been a melting-pot of emotions. The peaks and troughs of the hills we’ve walked have correlated with the highs of great achievements and the lows as well. Thankfully our other team members have always been there to pull us through when things have gotten tough, physically and emotionally.
6 days in and excited is still an understatement for what we’re feeling when we think about the rest of our trek ahead.