On our final day in Torotoro we went out for another amazing hike in a different canyon. This one was not as deep or as vast as the first one we visited, but it was just as spectacular. Our time here was growing shorter and shorter, and we dreaded leaving, but this was a nice way to end our time in Torotoro.
On this hike we ascended to the top of a waterfall (located half-way up the canyon), explored the canyon below, and viewed some cliff drawings. This waterfall is fed from an underground river, like the one visited previously, but during the dry season it is possible to explore a small cave at the mouth of the waterfall.
The canyon was beautiful, and getting to the waterfall was a lot of fun, and a bit adventurous. Once we got close to the falls, we had to do some tricky footwork along a cliff face for the last few feet. There were no ropes this time (although we all agreed it would have been helpful), and yet again, Victor was waiting half way down the steep incline to catch us if we fell. Victor was very brave standing by to save us, we just wondered how effective he would have been. Chivalry is not dead in Bolivia.
Being on top of the waterfall was great as it had spectacular views of the canyon below and the falls itself. Erosion has made interesting little holes for you to put your feet in and enjoy the cool water.
At one point, Kristen slipped and fell into a hole (go figure). But don’t worry, she was okay.
We all enjoyed our time up here taking in the view, but we all secretly worried a little bit about the climb back out. It always seems like going up is easier than going down. Kristen dazzled us with some fancy footwork and even had time for a quick picture.
From the waterfall, we hiked down into the canyon for more great scenery and to the find the cave paintings. We walked along a gorgeous river and over many boulders.
With so many natural pools and slides, it was hard to resist jumping in for a swim, but the water was a little too cold and churned up from all the recent rain. If we had more time in Torotoro, it would be a great place to hang out, swim, and enjoy the amazing surroundings. Guess we are just going to have to come back.
After boulder hopping, avoiding quicksand-like mud (El Fango), and passing a snake (Sorry, Cindy no pictures included), we arrived at the cave drawings. There are a few different locations of drawings in the Torotoro area, but this was the best one we visited. They seemed to depict mountains, some other natural elements, and a few of their gods.
Our hike ended in the big city of Torotoro, where we visited one of the weirdest museums ever.
We went in expecting a museum. Instead we found a house decorated with every type of fossil or weird rock the owner could get his hands on (and here we were so concerned with not taking any). This museum was painstakingly built by this enthusiastic man for over 30 years.
He must have spent a ton of time scouring the local area looking for the perfect rocks. He had covered all the room walls of his house with all these rocks, making it strangely beautiful.
He gave us a tour of the “museum,” but instead of telling us the names of the rocks or fossils, he just told us what they looked like to him.
He was also very excited about his pet dinosaur which he would put on your shoulder and insist you take a picture.
To top it all off, he had his granddaughter and granddaughter’s friend do a traditional dance for us. It was a little strange, but luckily they got Kristen and Sarah to join in, which made it more hilarious.
Our time in Torotoro was quickly winding down, so we drove back to the hostel for showers and one last amazing meal. We all hated to leave so much, that the driver just about had to pull us, kicking and screaming to the car.
Torotoro is such an amazing place, with so much to see and do that it should be a must-do on any trip to Bolivia. We also had such a great time hanging out with Sarah and Luis, which we are sure added so much to our trip.
How cool! I can just picture a brontosaurus chilling in the water ponds, soaking up some sun.
Kris, it looked like the rock ate you in that one picture, and Joe looked a little too serious for it to be funny. It would have been interesting if one of you had fallen, purely to figure out what Victor would do.
Keep doing fun stuff like this– who needs museums anyway? (Unless they are museums consisting of an amalgam of rocks.)
PS Garbage is reuniting and I’m going. So there.
I am glad to see that you have gotten over hating us with every post. I am also sorry that we did so much cool stuff after you left. One day we will return.
Victor was a great guide… you would have gotten a kick out of him. I am glad we didn’t ever have to test his strength with a “trust fall” on the side of a cliff.
I am jealous about Garbage. Maybe they will swing by Buenos Aires?
Random… they played “Stupid Girl” on our bus last night.