Cerro Castillo NR

We get up to make breakfast as “cook group 2” are now up and running, and we plan on treating the crew with some cooked food. Plastic sausages and fried eggs!! To accompany the usual oats, cereals and fruits. I treated myself to some granola which I bought and a yoghurt, but on putting the yoghurt down on the table within 20 seconds Geoffrey (old Aussie guy!) had opened it up and taken half of it and was working his way towards the granola! Moral here is don’t put your personal stuff on the group table. He is very apologetic but this is one in a line of incidents, yesterday he accidentally left the lid off his water and lay it on the table soaking my legs!!

After breakfast is done, its off horse riding so we make our way to the back of the ranch to get our horses. Mine is a gorgeous grey horse, looks like she’s just had a foal as well and is being put back to work. We are shown how to get on, how to steer, kissing to go and shushing to stop, usual safety features on the horse what to do what not to do etc. and then we all get on. My horse is called Ceniza which means ash.

We start off on the trail which is about 2hrs long and goes up and down through the countryside around the ranch with various views, its ok but at 16,000CLP you can’t really complain. The horses know the drill and just plod along kept in line by the ranch owner and other two helpers, my horse seems content with plodding along at the back with the occasion trot to catch up and stay in line. We get to do a little canter in a field and then start the way back. Its an ok way to spend the morning, not much else to do here really, and when we head back of course the horses pick up speed knowing they are getting home, and mine more so as she is obviously keen to get back to her foal! We thank our hosts and head back to the ranch, first thing is lunch!!

I realise just how dusty the ride was as I am completely covered in dirt and have to have a good wash before starting lunch prep, it takes a good 4 face wipes to get that dirt off before I can even get soap on me. Lunch today is the usual, bread, salad, cheese, ham, and lots of fruit, banana’s grapes, we went all out. I donate a few things to the table like avocado because we have a border crossing tomorrow and won’t get through them before then. We also make an egg mayonnaise out of the left over boiled eggs from group 1 that need eating up. Its pretty damn windy still and getting pretty cold so after lunch its back into the house for pretty much everyone and I opt to get a power nap before we have to start dinner.

Dinner kicks off at 6pm, and I have 10 onions to chop, a ton of mushrooms and lots of other prep to get through, we also have a complication with one person who needs a few of the ingredients left out, as well as gluten free pasta and lets not forget the 25 chicken breasts that need to fit into the pan along with everything else. I have to say as a team effort we do pretty well getting it all done but it takes a solid 2hrs before we are ready with the chicken, tomato, veg and cream (not sure I liked the cream bit myself!) pasta dish, but lets just say no one is disappointed and the leftovers of the chicken is pretty small, the pasta however…. I am pretty sure we did too much with about 10 packets of spaghetti and a good half of it left over!!

As always the night is rounded off with drinks around the campfire and we have to be up early tomorrow to make our final breakfast and be off the campsite before 8am for our next border crossing back into Argentina!!

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