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jwg

Last Part of the Train trip

The last part of the train trip was from Yaguachi to Duran (the end of the line near Guayaqui). Again we had a steam engine for this part. They had been pulling the train backwards for a while which made the observation car not quite as nice because of no direct rear view. At the end of the trip we celebrated with a fancy drink and some musicians came on board to entertain us. And as usual a variety of things and people to see. No more mountains of course since we at sea level.

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Frigate
jwg

Street Art (and laundry)

I like to take photographs of laundry hanging out to dry. I think of it as a form of street art. We passed by lots of instances. And also there was some interesting graffiti and street art on buildings.

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EatingInGreece
jwg

A visit to Hacienda La Denesa

On the last day of the Tren Crucero trip we visited Hacienda La Denesa, an inn, restaurant, cacao plantation, and horse farm. As the train was going we passed spots where there lots of little brown pellets lying on the ground. I wondered what they were; and found out later- they were cacoa seeds. We got a tour of the farm seeing some demos of how they processed the cacao. And then we had lunch before moving on.

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armyboy
jwg

Places/People seen from the train

As we descended and left the mountainous area there were more houses, and people to be seen in addition to the interesting and varied scenery.

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Lion
jwg

The Devil's Nose

In 1901 they were constructing the railroad between Quito and Guayaquil and had to deal with ascent/descent down the side of a mountain. The found a spot locals called the Condor's Aerie and proceeded to build a zig-zag course of switch-backs so that dropped 500 meters in about 12 kilometers such that the train would go back and forth while ascending or descending. It got the nickname the Devil's Nose because of the difficulty and the deaths of workers; this name has stuck. It is hard to get a really good big picture view since we were on the train and you'd have to be further away. Several times the train stopped and members of the crew went out to look at the wheels of one car - whatever it was they fixed it or anyway it didn't matter. There was very nice mountainous views and very few people or buildings in the section of the trip.

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shadow
jwg

The Market at Guamote

About an hour from Riobamba the train pulled into Guamote where there was very busy market right by the train tracks. A wide variety of stuff was being sold there. Some of it was in the open air and some in a huge shed.

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plateful
jwg

Small market near the church

After looking at the church we wandered into a small market. There was a craftsman making little sculptures out of tagua, also known as vegetable ivory and is the seed of a kind of palm tree. And someone was selling roasted guinea pig.

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Hippo
jwg

Leaving Riobamba

Another early morning start for day 3 of our Tren Crucero trip from Quito to Guayaquil. This time leaving from Riobamba with a full day of interesting things to see ahead of us. Again the weather was pretty clear so we saw some nice scenery and mountains - some of which were volcanoes. Among other things we saw and visited the oldest Catholic Church in Ecuador, built (started or finished - I'm not sure) on Augues 15, 1534!

This first part of the trip was by steam engine. They did send the diesel engine on ahead because we would switch to it for very technically challenging part of the trip later that day.

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with camera
jwg

Hosteria La Andaluza in Riobamba

We stayed in a very nice hotel, Hosteria La Andaluza, in Riobamba. We were entertained at dinner by musicians. There were all sorts of artifacts scattered about. The table between the beds in our room was propped up by an old Singer treadle for a sewing machine. And we saw a bunch of these in different places. (My desk at home is propped up by one as is a plant table on the porch of our Gloucester house.) It was a picturesque place but we spent very little time there other than the night. The food was good too.



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EvilGrin
jwg

"Visitors" on the train

At one point in the afternoon they made us all get into one of the cars and suddenly some "visitors" emerged. And there was a bit of dancing. Again we passed some villages, saw some nice mountains, and occasional animals. We got a demo by a master of some special technique of straw wrapping at the last stop for the day.



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