Yoss Castillo – #WandererYoss

Mount Roraima

For me, this is one of those journeys that kills you at the same time you fell in love with it. It was an amazing, fun, incredible trip, however, because I’m not that sporty (I used to and after this trip I’m trying to get back at it) it killed my legs that I couldn’t walk for 3 days. So, if you’re planing to do this and never have gone trekking before… long trekking, start the training!

Roraima

Obviously my trip started going through Gran Sabana. I needed to go again! (here my last post about Gran Sabana) Love it. First night, we stayed camping at Iboribo, which it’s by Aponwao river. It was perfect because it was low season and we were the only ones at the camp.

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campingIboribo

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The following morning, we took a boat ride to visit Aponwao Fall, by the river. You can do it walking as well. Beautiful view to one big fall!

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From there, we hit the road, ready for a long way to Santa Elena. On the way we stopped at various interesting points, more falls and streams to see that I didn’t meet last time I was in Gran Sabana.

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There are so many beautiful sceneries! Although, too many to see in just one day. For this trip, I visited Wari, Amuy, Anaway and Sakaika. All of them very different from each other, great spots to spend the night and amazing to relax the eyes and keep that memory on your mind at all times.

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We finally arrived in Santa Elena and went to meet our group and guides from Backpacker-Tours. I already knew I was going to have an awesome week!

Roraima

The following day, the trekking began at Paraitepui. Walking for about 3-4 hours, stopping at some points for pictures or rest few seconds.

Paraitepuy

trekking

The 1st camp was by Tek river. This one was our last camp as well. Enjoyed a nice ‘bath’ in this river because, even when I didn’t know by that time, the following rivers were going to be colder.

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2nd day, woke up very early, had a nice breakfast and coffee (great to begin a long day!). We had to cross 2 rivers (Tek and Kukenan) and then lots of up and down the hills. It took me a while to get to ‘Base Camp’ but almost running for the last part of the way, since I could see a huge storm coming. The rain caught me. It was really dark as night, lots of rocks on the way and alone.

baseCamp

Finally made it to Base Camp, where we spent the 2nd night and had lunch on the 5th day before heading to our last stop. After the rain, I started to appreciate the amazing view to Mount Roraima making me feel super small. Plus the gorgeous view in front of me with part of the Gran Sabana and another tepuy, Kukenan.

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3rd day, the climbing was even harder than preview days. Finally, it was the actual Roraima that we started to climb. For me it was very difficult since it was my 1st trip like this, trekking for hours and climbing high rocks. But every time I stopped for a break, the view was breathtaking. I don’t know if I wanted to stay there for the view or because I was dead… And the streams and even water falls we passed by, making it even better, fresh clean water to drink or just splash my face with it. Oh my God… the view, I still remember them even after a couple of months… breathing and feeling nature at its best!

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At last, on top of the Roraima! Great feeling when looking down! Love it! I couldn’t believe it. I still had 30min ahead to walk to get to camp. I felt awesome! Super tired but awesome feeling that I was finally there.

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After dinner, I remember I found a perfect spot to relax. To stay away from everything. Sadly, I didn’t take my camera with me. I just felt I needed to be away. So I sat at a rock, where I couldn’t hear no one. Very dark. The sky full of stars. I could see 3 different areas, faraway, with lightening, even a spot where it was raining, not where we were, it was a bit chilly but great. Shutting stars. Very peaceful! Well.. at least for about 20 minutes, when some people of my group saw my spot and everyone, 19 people plus few guides, decided to be on top of that rock as well. I wanted to be alone, but it was nice that everyone was there. Great group I met by the way. Awesome people and guides as well!

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4th day, no backpacks to take. Just a bottle of water and camera of course. I also took a towel since we were heading to the natural jacuzzis I wanted to see. It was a nice walk. We visited a Crystal Valley, obviously we can’t take any stone or quartz as a souvenir.

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Then we walked to ‘The Window’ where the fog was blinding everything around us. The local guides told us we have to respect the nature. We needed to be quiet so the clouds will go away and we could enjoy the stunning view. We did and it happened. In front of us we had the Kukenan and under… well… a huge awful fall. Gorgeous view indeed! Unbelievable place.

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The famous natural jacuzzis were next. It was amazing! The water wasn’t as cold as I though it will be. Beautiful scenery. So relaxing! I wanted to stay there longer. Loved it! Favorite place in the world! 🙂

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That night I wanted to go to another spot to relax, by myself, but it rained the whole night. All I though how the following day, descending day, was going to be with all the water that felt that night. One of the things I was told, to bring rum or some strong liquor for the nights since it’ll be cold. Some of the brazilians brought ‘cachaça’ so we had a couple of cachaça shots while talking under some rocks.

Roraima_day5

The 5th day, time to go down to the 1st camp. Even harder to go downhill for me. We arrived to Base Camp to have lunch. By that time my legs were a bit uncomfortable. The pain started to show. After lunch, I kept on going to the 1st camp. Legs were about to die. If I stopped, I felt them trembling. Started to rain but I didn’t care this time so I wasn’t walking faster. I already had one of my arms too burned by the strong sun, plus lots of mosquitos (and ‘puri puri’ even bigger than mosquitos and it itches a lot!) bites… and of course, my ‘girly’ side complaining about nails and hair. At some point, when I saw so close, but so far at the same time, the camp where I was going, I don’t know why I started to cry like crazy. I don’t know if it was the pain mixed with tiredness and believing I made the whole trip… but I cried as a little girl. I got to Tek river and stayed in the river for a while, relaxing with lots of ‘puri puri’ around me, getting darker, but that water felt soo good!

The best part about arriving to the last camp, they had a small kiosk selling sodas and beers! Of course we had to get some beers! Never tasted that good before.

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With the awesome guides!

I started to see other groups arriving for their first day, and barely talking to each other, looking so clean. It was so nice to see my group all hanging out together, drinking some beers, talking, laughing and looking so dirty 🙂

Great, fun and amazingly beautiful trip. Even though it killed me, I’d do it again!

Click HERE to watch AT29’s video

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