The Hills

La Cumbre Travel Blog

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For the past three weeks I have been exploring the flats and plains of South America, today I found the hills. The hills around Cordoba are not the big mountains of the Andes. They are small sharply cut vegetated rises reminiscent of the hills around Kamloops in the autumn, minus the sage. Today, they were especially beautiful as they faded in and out of the mist of a rainy day. I decided to take a day trip from Cordoba to the town of La Cumbre, 2 hours northwest by bus, and try some horse back riding.The drive itself was worth the trip for me. My bus ride into Cordoba was at night and the horizon of the city has been obscured by cloud since I arrived so it was a delight to twist and turn through the hills on a windy road ( for those with motion sickness Gravol is advised). I had picked up a paper in town to practice my Spanish. The front page story was not the bus strike but the price of tomatos. Or rather the fact that Walmart is selling tomatos for 50% less than anybody else in town. At the bus terminal in La Cumbre I was met by Christian, the owner of the hostelling international Hostel there, he took me to his hostel to wait for my horse guide to come down from the mountains to pick me up. The hostel in La Cumbre is a very nice old English house with a big yard and easy access to the many hills around the town. I wished that I had stayed there rather than in Cordoba.
I was taken in a rugged old car up a bumpy gravel road to a farm with sheep, cows and chickens. My guide, Miguel, didnĀ“t speak a word of English so I was forced to practice my Spanish. I had never riden a horse for any period before and though I enjoyed the experience immensly it was quite obvious that the horse was the one with the control. When we arrived back at the stables after 3 hours riding in the hills, Miguel wanted to show me his farm but my horse knew it was back home and no matter how hard I kicked it it refused to move. Eventually, Miguel took the reins and led my horse over to where the sheep were grazing so that I could see the newborn lambs. It was a wonderful experience. I know the whole thing was very touristy but it did not feel cheesy tourist.
I found both the town and the surrounding country delightful places to be. I would recommend going there to anybody interested in more outdoorsy pursuits.

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La Cumbre
photo by: Foozzzy