Colca Canyon May 2017

After a successful trip to the beach, we decided to spend the next weekend in Colca Canyon. I love Colca and I go there as often as possible. This time we went with a friend of ours and stayed in her lovely house in Yanque. We decided only to bring Teddy and Nala this time as our friend was also bringing two of her dogs and we felt that four dogs was probably enough, especially as we wanted to be able to go to the hot springs solo and ride the horses. Teddy is great left alone anywhere and is quite happy to settle down on a bed for a few hours, Nala I have never left for the night and I figured she would be fine if we brought along a crate for her to go in when we had to leave her in the house.

Setting out went smoothly. We stopped and picked up Fran and her dogs on the way and then set off. Colca is only about 3 hours from Arequipa and the drive is beautiful. We stopped a couple of times to let the dogs out and to take some photos.

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We arrived in Colca around 12 and got settled into the house first. It has spectacular views!

DSCN2421 That first day we went hiking with the dogs. I was worried about Nala hiking for long distances as she is only 4 months old, but she did great. I brought along my doggy rucksack and carried her when we had to cross the river. We walked down to the river first and saw some alpacas and sheep. All the the other dogs thought they were great, Teddy thought they were dinner!

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After the excitement of seeing the animals, we went down to the river to cool off. Teddy likes to lie in the water right at the edge. Nala was reasonably excited about her first experience with water other than the dreaded bath! She went in but didn’t seem inclined to swim. Killa (the Lab) loves swimming and Illary (Collie) just likes to jump around on the edge mostly!

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The river bed was awesome with the dogs as there was no one down there and Teddy could be off leash without me worrying about him. We decided to cross the river and go up the other side. The river was extremely cold and quite deep and strong. We waded across with only Carlos slipping and getting wet! I had to carry Nala across in the backpack and then go back for Teddy as Teddy doesn’t swim well. Teddy is heavy and awkward to carry but I have to do it as he wont let anyone else pick him up.

We carried on along the river on the opposite side and then went up some stairs, crossed the bridge and circled back to the house.

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We ate dinner in a restaurant in town that night and we were all asleep really early. The altitude plus hike left us all exhausted!

Next day we got up early and went riding for a few hours. We went up to the top of one of the hillsides and got some great views of the canyon. Fran’s dogs came along with the horses, our dogs stayed in the house as it was going to be way too much walking for them.

We rode for around 3 hours and then went back to the house, rested for a couple of hours and went walking again with the dogs. This time we went back down to the river but walked the other way to Colca Lodge and then up the hill on the other side.

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That night we left some very exhausted doggies in the house and drove over to Colca lodge for dinner and to use the hot springs. The water great after two days of hiking and riding. I love the pools at Colca Lodge and it was the perfect end to a long day.

Sunday morning we got up early and drove to see the condors. We were very lucky and it was a great day for condor watching. The dogs enjoyed it because there were lots of people around to pet them. And we got to see some birds close up. Our only mistake was that we didn’t charge the camera up before we went and so it died about 10 mins in so I don’t have any wonderful pictures of the condors. I think the condors realized that we didn’t have the camera and came down extra close just to tease us!

The dogs were a hit at the condor watching site and a lot of the tourists wanted to pet them and even take photos with Nala. I have to say that she is very photogenic!

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After the condors we packed up the car and drove back to Arequipa. It was a good trip back with very little traffic and all four dogs slept soundly the whole journey!

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