San Isidro, Cuzco, Peru Wednesday, June 24, 2015
I had very little sleep during in the evening, with my gut turning over and over, and noises of dogs barking though-out the evening. Temperature wise I was fine, the minus 10 degrees sleeping bag seems to be working nicely. You can however, add me to the list of those that have dropped like flies, it appears that I woke this morning with either a bad case altitude sickness or food poisoning.
While I was considering turning around and heading back to Lares township as I didn't feel up to it. Bruno encouraged me to hang in there and if need be, they would get the emergency horse to help me make it to the top. Everyone at breakfast was so supportive by not wanting to leave anyone behind as well, so I decided I would continue on and try and hike as much as I could.
We headed off from the base of the Sicllaccasa Mountain to trek to its high point of the pass but within the first 2.5kms, the horse was called in. Apparently my lips had turned blue, my face had turned white, and I physically was struggling to move any further. The horse carted me most of the way to the top of the Trek of approximately 1km in ascending altitude to 4800m over about 5kms.
While I felt terrible (both from being sick, and the fact the others were having to walk it all) I was able to take in the amazing and beautiful sites of scenic views of lagoons and the snow-capped Chicon Mountain.
While the horse carried me most of the way up, I did get off and try and hike some. After reaching the top, the horse, porter and I stopped for a while to allow him to rest as well as the horse while I took in the sites.
I decided I would try give the next downhill part of the trek a go by foot, it was only 2.5kms and it was downhill so figured it would be OK. Turns out I was right and managed to make it to the lunch spot by foot. I curled up and took a nap while I waited on the others. I woke about 50 minutes later to the other guys arriving, I was so happy to see they had made it. While I was on the horse I remember thinking how hard this would've even if I wasn't ill. I felt so proud of them all, especially Laura who struggled though it all at the back of the line and pushed through it all. I hear the other guys cheered her to the top of the pass as she even shed a tear or two, it's certainly a massive achievement. My only regret is I wasn't well enough to do it with them.
I sat down to lunch with the others, and although I was feeling a bit better, I still wasn't feeling 100%, after I got a bit of food in me though I started to feel a lot better. It was hard at first as I couldn't force myself to eat anything, I would only eat what I mentally felt OK to eat.
I decided that now I had some food in me, and I managed to do the previous part downhill that I would see how this part of the downhill would go, apparently only going to be 2kms or so.
The sights were spectacular, and at one point I almost shed a tear thinking how lucky I was that I got to see these amazing views. The annoying this is that the photos will never show you guys how amazing it was, you don't get the depth perception nor the true colour.
We carried on down the track and came across what we thought was suppose to be our campsite. Unfortunately there seemed to be a breakdown in communication as to who had that site today so we carried on another 2kms or so to the next campsite, which is great as it means we walk less tomorrow.
Arriving at the campsite I found Bruno and Fredrik playing soccer with some of the porters and cooks, personally I didn't even go near it as I played soccer the other day in Ccaccaccollo and that was hard enough.
I'm now feeling almost back to 100% which is great, just a shame it wasn't a day earlier. We will get a chance to sleep in tomorrow till about 7:30am before breakfast at 8am, before we begin our hike out which should take no less than 3-4 hours.