Return to Hikanbyke
Biscotti Making
Columbia Trip
Black Diamond Mines
San Juan Islands
Monterey New Years
Monterey New Years
Guerneville, CA
ClearLake, CA

Colombia Adventure 2013 (Continued)


Colombia Trip participants tell their story

Last Sunday, three Hikanbykers, Joan Friedman, Marty Rosson, and myself, Claudia Gerst, along with four other non-Hikanbykers, returned from our 16-day Adventure in Colombia, exhausted but very happy with our adventurous tour.

It was led by an excellent tour guide from Ecuador, Henry Sisa Moya, who frequently leads tours to Colombia and is extremely knowledgeable about the natural environment (he’s available to Hikanbyke members for exclusive tours to Ecuador, Bolivia, Peru, and Colombia. You can contact Claudia Gerst to get his information).

After ascending a winding road through the majestic Andes, we descended into the fertile valley of Armenia, the famous coffee region of Colombia, where we stayed at a beautiful Coffee Farm/Hacienda. In jeeps they refer to as Willys, we drove to a coffee farm, picked coffee, learned the traditional coffee harvest dance, had “tipico” meals,  and were serenaded at night with romantic music and aguardiente, the famous Colombian fire drink.

Then we hiked in the awesome hills of the Cocorra Valley, the home of the world’s largest Wax Palm, followed by three nights in the old City of Cartagena by the Caribbean, touring at night in a Chiva (party bus) with the happy rhythmic Vallenato music, plied with rum, and dancing at the edge of the walled city as the Caribbean winds cooled us.

Then we hiked into the exquisite Tayrona National Park, slept in hammocks on the top of a hill arrested by cold early morning winds; the following day, jostled in a 4-wheel drive, we wound torturously up a deeply grooved road into the Santa Marta Mountains to a remote indigenous Arhuaco village, ending with a meeting with their shaman and a school visit with gifts of much-needed school supplies. This last visit provided a lasting memory of the childrens’ innocent faces betraying the harsh life of a people who have chosen to remain distant from and virtually unaffected by their surrounding modern world.

It was an eventful, fun, enriching, unforgettable 16-day journey!

Claudia Gerst