This photo-blog is designed to work either as a standard blog with images or - by clicking any image - a photo-album. To see an image in full resolution click to the left or right of an image in blog mode. The images were generated from video to give the best possible view of the journey.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Cochabamba to the Tropical Lowlands

Packing the land cruiser at Teresa's place

We began our circuit of Bolivia from La Paz after hiring a very expensive land cruiser to make sure we could get through the rough roads in northern Beni in any weather.

The main roads near La Paz have tool booths

The highways are littered with billboards in a serious form of commercial pollution.

Maggi, Nescafe and Milo are all implicated

We passed throughcommercial areas in the outskirts of the city ...

and then out on to a rather desolate highway punctuated by detours and road construction

The road then passes out east over the altiplano parallel to the Andes.

We pass though a landscape of tussock and small brick farm houses and small ribbon developments towns with a stream of brick buildings.

Another desolate little road side town.

The road slowly ascends to high tussock country.

Panorama of the high country

Then in the evening we eventually descend down a steep valley to the Cochabamba area.

In the morning before setting off, we take a stroll around Cochamamba which has a rather different feel from La Paz.

The central square and gardens

Panorama of the centre of Cochabamba

Panorama of the central gardens

The "Cristo Redemptor" overlooking Cochabamba

A lake on the outskirts of Cochabamba overlooked by a bario

The road then climbs to a summit pass.

Looking back at the country around Cochabamba

Back into the altiplano high country

Cutting to an even higher level towards the summit

Eventually we come to the summit pass, nowhere as extreme as the Yungas road, because the Andes are terminating here, but still littered with "Cristo viene" and "Cristo te ama" Christ is coming, Jesus loves you!

Lost in the mist at the summit

We then pass down a steep gorge

We begin to see forest clad hills and rushing torrents

Panorama looking out over the forested hills of the Isboro Secure National Park

The road continues to wind steeply down a long valley through the foothills.

Everywhere there are signs of logging.

Logging trucks are the dominant form of commercial transport

Panorama over the foothills

The local shop sells coca leaves as well as coca cola

Highway inspection point for police, drugs and/or logging

The road now becomes a dusty unsealed affair

The hillsides now become moister and more heavily covered in semi-tropical vegetation

Tropical forest fires immediately make their presence as they will throughout our journey

A flowering tree which supports a species of bird with hanging nests

Finally we descend to the beginning of the lowland tropical zone.

Panorama of a village on the road selling varieties of tropical bananas

Sounds of the music in the market (mp3)

Panorama of "yes we have more bananas"

Locals at a festival in the village

A late lunch

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