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Weekend before last we had a couple of adventures of note.  First was Meghan’s quick jaunt up to Pichincha which she did with the Volcanology class.  We learned from Spanish classmates of ours that any student could attend what appears to be regular weekend visits to various volcanic destinations – which means potentially anywhere in Ecuador.  This particular one just happened to start at 3:30 AM at a meeting place in downtown Quito.  Yours truly had the awesome task of taking Meghan to the meeting place and picking her up at 9:30 later that morning.  Meghan had a nice time though.  Pichincha is the volcano adjacent to Quito.  It’s relatively small by comparison to others nearby and is not snowcapped.  However, it dominates the Quito skyline running North and South, as do the Andes themselves.


Later that day (seemed like a different day to me) we headed out with Juan Carlos and the kids to Papallacta, a resort centered around natural hot springs.  Papallacta is a nice 1.5 hour drive from the city which heads east towards the rainforest.  You have to drive over one particular ridge of the Andes mountains to get there.  It’s a really pretty ride on a great road which unfortunately ends just 4 km prior to the resort.  The last 4 km are your standard dirt and rock, try not to look over the edge variety that you still see here and there in Ecuador.  The resort itself is terrific with beautiful accommodations, and the hot springs are laid out into a series of pools of various temperatures – some really hot, and some pretty darn chilly.  It is extremely relaxing with small intimate settings here and there and larger pools elsewhere.  People come here for the medicinal value of the natural springs as well as for the full service spa.  It was a great trip.  Here are some pics of from Meghan's adventure and Papallacta.  Stay tuned for more updates soon.


Sunrise Over Quito on Pichincha
Sunrise Over Quito


Another Nice Shot


Some of the Hot Springs at Papallacta
A Few of the Hot Spring Pools


Check the Fine Print (First Bullet) Nice!
Check the Fine Print!


Heating Up
Heating UP


A Pic of the Mountains Nearby
A Pic of the Mountains Nearby


The Cold Shower Challenge!
The Cold Shower Challenge!


Uhhh…Nice Pose