Cycling The Globe

A Cycle Touring Expedition Around The World

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Day 1668: Climbing Volcan Baru

Posted by Thomas Andersen Posted on May - 10 - 2015

I had convinced Mariana that climbing Volcan Baru would be a real adventure, so one morning we were catching the bus to the mountain village of Boquete. Boquete in itself is a charming place with an alternative feeling to it. Many tourists stop by, and a large number of foreigners have even settled here.

We had the whole day to wander around, taking in the atmosphere and the fresh mountain air. What a difference compared to the heat and humidity at the coast.

At 3474 m Volcan Baru is quite a bit lower than the 6000 m peaks I climbed in Peru. On the other hand, it’s a 27 km hike to reach the summit – a distance that would be hard enough on flat terrain, let alone climbing 2000 height meters. To be able to reach the summit for sunrise you will have to leave Boquete at 11:30 pm. In the bus to the trail head we met Isabel from Australia and Igor from the Czech Republic.

After the first turn we never saw Igor again, but the rest of us got into a steady rhythm up the mountain in the dark night. Hard work for sure, but I love these kind of mountain challenges. Mariana had not really been doing any long hikes before and also thought it was pretty hard. I tried to explain that all the hardship would be worth it once we reached the summit. I hope it was…

At the summit there was a large group of people gathered for the sunrise. Although the “road” we had been following throughout the night was very very rough, you can actually drive up there in a 4×4. I was happy enough to be walking though.

The unique thing about Volcan Baru is that you can see both the Pacific and the Atlantic Ocean from the summit – if the weather is clear. As we arrived at the summit we had a clear view of the Pacific and also managed to get a glimpse of the Atlantic down there behind the clouds far below.

I loved to be up there above the clouds on a summit once again. “It is not the mountain we conquer, but ourselves.” said Edmund Hillary, and I agree. Hope I will get the chance to climb a few more volcanoes before I leave Central America.

Categories: Mountaineering, Panama
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One Response so far.

  1. All that hard work makes the end reward that much more fantastic. This must have been fantastic. And I’m sure the pictures don’t do it justice.