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2003-01-15 - 10:31 p.m.

Machu Picchu, Day Two

Day Two is up. And up, and up, and up. You wait for it to level out, but it never really does. You learn to walk really, really slow (something I would have told the two hotshot Venezuelan boys who passed me early on, but somehow made it to the top twenty minutes after I did), and to not stop very often, because it's that much harder to get started again. Or rather, I learned it, eventually, helped by the fact that Melchior, after graciously offering to carry my water bottle, proceeded to spend the rest of the morning dangling it in front me like a carrot in front of a rabbit. "You want water? Let's walk a little further." Eventually, I realized he was right, and we only stopped every hour or so.

This is the last hill before we reached the appropriately named Dead Woman's Pass.

This is the view we saw when we finally reached the top.

And the view from the other side.

All the travelers that we'd seen along the trail converged on the top of the Pass, equally jubilant (and exhausted).

Melchior and me, once again.

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