It was time for another volcano hike. The destination this time was Volcano National Park home of three very large volcanoes. The tallest, Vulcan Santa Ana with last eruption in 2005, was the goal. Although the park is not too many kilometers from Juayua where I have been staying all week, it required catching a 6:00 a.m. two hour bus to Santa Ana in order to catch a 9:00 a.m. bus to the park. There is a mandatory guide rule in effect due to some previous problems and you must be there by 11:00 a.m. to make the once daily trek. With only a block to walk between buses, there was plenty of time to pop into a local comedor and get some breakfast typical and tasty Salvadorean coffee.
Arriving at the staging area, we were treated to a beautiful view of nearby Vulcan Iiametepec.
Our small group of old and new friends started our trek and after 20 minutes arrived at the actual park boundary.
Now we began to really climb! Soon we could see a finca way below.
An hour later and just over half way up, I rounded a corner and got a great view of Lago de Coatepeque, a beautiful caldera lake with Isle del Cerro in the foreground.
Much climbing and about another hour we arrived at the top. At 7,757 feet this is El Salvador’s highest point. I was sore and tired but quickly revived in my spectacular surroundings. Vulcan de Santa Ana has the most textured caldera I have ever seen, with perhaps the exception of Haleakala on Maui.
The steep-sided caldera walls have differentiating layers of texture and color. Water fills the bottom and the high sulfur content gives it’s unusual color. Sulfur gas rises from a nearby vent.
Represented: El Salvador, U.S., Sweden, Germany and Australia.
Of course it was too small. But we had a great time. He practiced his English and I practiced my Spanish with each other.
Well that’s about it. I am headed to the beach.Tweet