Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Santa Ana Volcano & Diving

Last weekend, we went hiking starting at Cerro Verde heading up the to the summit of Santa Ana. We went with our social sponsors and a friend they had met from the Peace Corps. We were aiming to get there at 11, because that's when the guides with escorts leave, but, along the way, we had the sidewall of the tire of their Rav4 blowout. What is it with us and road trips in Rav4s? We changed the tire and put on the partially deflated spare tire. We got to the mountain at around 11:15 and were able to find some guides (the police :) ). We started out the hike going through the woods in a mist of a cloud. Once we left the forest, it started to clear up a little bit. At some point, we got above treeline and were surrounded by small shrubs and crazy cacti. We had a great view of el Volcán Izalco, which is a very new volcano that sprang up over the course of 200 years ending in 1958. (We'll hike that later). The top of the Santa Ana volcano was pretty cool -- very moon-ish, probaby due to the sulphuric smell of the place -- I dunno. There was a lot of fog, so, we were unable to look into the caldera of the volcano, but, apparently there is a lake up there as well. Our hike down seemed pretty quick. It was a gorgeous day going through lots of different climates -- very cool. In all, the hike took around 4 hours. On our ride back to El Salvador, we saw a lot of road bikers riding along the Pan American highway between San Salvador and Santa Ana. We'll have to try that soon.

When we got back to San Salvador, we went to a 30th birthday party for some new friends from the Embassy. The embassy life is kind of like college, if you want it to be. Plenty of great reasons to grab a few beers. We played some rounds of Thumper and flip cup before retiring for the night early, due to diving.

We caught a ride to Lago de Ilopango for another day of diving at 6:40am. Yikes! The weather wasn't quite as nice as our first day diving, but, the dive site was pretty sweet. Our dives were around an island in the middle of a lake that barely sticks out above the water and has a cross on top of it (and another at 25'). We saw more fish this time and more crabs. This was our deep dive for the advanced certification -- 100'! Unfortunately, neither Sophie nor I got narced. Overall, the diving was pretty good - the ocean still has more stuff to see, but, getting out and going underwater is pretty fun.

Work this week has been pretty good. I can't complain. Soccer every Monday is pretty nice. Last night we got pupusas with some of Sophie's Salvadoran coworkers -- que rico!

Pictures from the past few weeks!


  1. It’s Friday, and that means that the Weekly State Department Blog Roundup is up – and you’re on it!

    Here is the link:

    (If I quoted your text or used your photo(s) and you would rather I had not, please let me know. Please also be sure to check the link(s) that I put up to you, in order to verify that they work properly. If you would rather that I had not referenced you, and/or do not want me to reference you in the future, please also contact me.)


  2. @Shannon - sorry I just now saw this! haha. I noticed that you linked me - great roundup!