Subir a los picos que engalanan la cordillera es una forma de acercarse al cielo.

A los 11 años participé en los campamentos educativos de montaña Aire Libre organizados por el andinista Fabián Zurita, fuí integrante de la patrulla Pumamaqui.

Interno junto con otros niños en una propiedad situada en Alangasí tenía claro que los próximos 15 o 20 días serían de preparación para subir a los picos que embellecen la cordillera.

El primer día, Fabián presentaba al guía y a los compañeros, luego disponía levantar las tiendas de acampar, había la opción de armar una casa en el árbol utilizando herramientas caseras.

Después de una corta charla del guía y de acordar el nombre de la patrulla nos informaban sobre los horarios para la comida, el deporte y la hora de guardia.

Al siguiente día, a las seis de la mañana, Fabián Zurita, hacía sonar el pito y todos teníamos que estar formados para cantar el himno a la montaña.

“La Luz de la mañana nos invita a caminar, a contemplar y el sol enciende en nuestras almas el ideal (…). Aire Libre, vamos a cantar (…) ”.

Fabián era claro, desde el inicio hacía públicas las reglas de convivencia dentro del campamento y a nadie se le permitía romperlas.

Llamaba contrabando a los artefactos y golosinas que no aportaban a la salud y al desarrollo intelectual como son: radios, chocolates, caramelos, chicles, juegos electrónicos, teléfonos, entre otros.

Al contrario, para estimular a los participantes del campamento realizaba torneos de tormento chino y premiaba con una camiseta al que lograba permanecer el mayor tiempo recostado sobre el piso, con las piernas estiradas sin topar el suelo.

Hombres y mujeres trotábamos todos los días en la mañana desde La Merced hasta El Tingo y luego nos bañábamos en las piscinas de aguas termales del sector.

Al tercer día de campamento la primera cumbre en ascender era el Ilaló, de esta forma preparaba a los niños para que fortalezcan sus piernas, despejen su mente, se familiaricen con la montaña, identifiquen la vegetación y reconozcan los riesgos a los que se exponen.

Luego de este entrenamiento estábamos listos  para coronar picos más altos como: el Pasochoa, el Rumiñahui, los Illinizas, Atacazo, Corazón, Sincholagua.

La falta de tiempo y principalmente de recursos me impidió continuar con esta afición de subir a las cumbres respetando la montaña y valorando la naturaleza.

Pero la vida me tenía guardada una sorpresa, ahora que mi hijo tiene 8 años me preguntó si le puedo llevar a la montaña.

No lo pensé dos veces,  a las 07:40 de este domingo empezamos el ascenso al Ilaló junto con mi esposa, nuestra mascota Max y varias familias que sienten la misma pasión.

Andrés subió atento a la vegetación, se maravilló con una gran cantidad de matorrales de mora silvestre,  los helechos, las matas de nigua, hojas, tallos y ramas

La cuesta pronunciada hizo que se canse rápidamente y a mitad del camino junto con Max se  bebieron  toda el agua.

El no tener más agua segura para el siguiente tramo le hizo reflexionar que este es un elemento vital que hay que cuidarlo y cuando se está en la montaña dosificarlo.

Al llegar a la cruz pensé que Andrés no se había dado cuenta de algo malo, las personas que llevan a sus mascotas se despreocupan totalmente de recoger los excrementos, pero no, me dijo molesto. “Papá, en todo el camino hay popó de los perritos, contaminan el ambiente, qué mal está eso”.

Quien también me sorprendió llegando a la cumbre fue mi esposa, contó que visitó este sitio junto con su padre a los siete años.

El descenso nos costó a los cuatro, la peña es bastante pronunciada, el camino está malo pese a que no ha llovido y nos caímos varias veces.

Pero saben, nos encantó hacerlo, disfrutamos mucho de esta aventura. La próxima caminata será al Quilotoa, en la provincia de Cotopaxi.

Les contaré a detalle los pasos que voy a continuar dando con mi hijo que tiene mucho interés por acercarse a las nubes e intentar abrazar al sol.  (EL Arca)

Por El Arca

402 comentarios en «De regreso a la montaña»
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