I am in the process of finishing up everything I need to do before I travel to Peru for three weeks of alpine climbing and work. In reality, those two are one and the same—I’m trying to put together the materials for a feature length article for an outdoor magazine about climbing on the east side of the Cordillera Blanca, the main climbing destination in Peru. Traditionally everyone climbs there from the west, based in Huaraz, but my climbing partner and I will be visiting the other side of the range, which is supposedly remote and untracked.
I’m taking my cameras in addition to my ice tools and crampons, and hopefully I’ll come back with enough material to pull the article together. I’m not much of a travel writer, choosing instead to focus on hard news, but I have a feeling if I can pull together the photos I can make this happen. It is a little disconcerting, however, to be going to South America with $4,000 in camera equipment when I’ll be spending most of my time in a tent.
It been interesting in the lead up to this, because as I’ve been getting ready to leave it seems more and more keeps happening around Berlin. Developments with the biomass projects and the Fraser mill are rapidly changing, and I’ve been trying to keep on top of them while preparing to leave.
I spoke to the woman who will be filling in for me for about an hour this morning to catch her up to speed on all of this. She will working in my stead for the three weeks I’m gone, so hopefully she got enough information to move forward.
I have to say, however, it is tough in an organization like the Reporter, where contacts and institutional memory are limited to individuals. I only have a year and a few months experience, but that has been invaluable recently in making connections that break stories. What the community needs is a reserve of those types of connections, not a shallowing of the well.
But I’ll only be gone a few weeks, which, in reality, isn’t that long. A lot will undoubtedly happen, but at the same time much will stay the same. That last part is unfortunate for the region, which needs so much to change.