Want to view stunning scenery, enjoy new kinds of plants and trees, and breathe cool, fresh mountain air while exercising in the company of friends? Take a hike! The Hoofing it in Oaxaca group does all this every Friday from November through March, and anyone with energy to burn can participate. We have joined six hikes so far, and have seen parts of the countryside around Oaxaca that we would never have known existed.
Archaeological Site of Atzompa
Formerly inhabited by the Zapotec people, Atzompa is believed to be an extension of Monte Albán (Jan. 4 post) which flourished between 500 B.C. and 750 A.D. Archaeologists are just now excavating and restoring the ruins that are being unearthed.
The climb to the former Zapotec village of Atzompa began in the present town of Atzompa, 900 feet below.
Pottery from the past
View of Oaxaca from Atzompa
Atzompa archaeological site
San Felipe del Agua: Hike 3 miles up a mountainside and still be in the city!
Built in the 1500’s, this aqueduct used to carry water from San Felipe to the residents of Oaxaca, which was then called Antequera.
Welcoming entrance to a home we passed on our climb up to San Felipe del Aqua.
Watching Over the Garden
Poinsettias (called Noche Buenas) grow as large bushes.
San Sebastian de las Grutas (post Jan. 19)
Inside the Gruta. See the Jan. 19 blog for more pictures of the gruta.
This shed was sided with old flattened food cans that were fastened on by nailing through bottle caps.
Spend a couple of nights in an eco-cabana, hike the mountains of San Sebastian, visit the village, and enjoy the tranquility of the region.
It’s all uphill from here! A steep and fortunately short path led to the entrance of La Gruta.
The city of Oaxaca lies in a valley of over 5,000 ft. altitude, and some of the mountain trails took us to more than 10,000 ft.
Uncountable hairpin turns on this dirt road made the 2 hour bus ride through the mountains to San Pablo Cuatro Venados an adventure of its own.
Because the needles droop, these are sometimes called “sad pines”.
These looked like 1 inch watermelons, but no one knew the real name.
Upper reservoir at Santo Domingo Tomaltepec. Reportedly you can fish in this lake. The hike took us through these mountain forests on mostly shaded trails.
That sandwich sure is tasty!
Farm perched high in the mountains San Pablo Cuatro Venados
Living in the Clouds
Epiphytes and lichen totally covered this twisted tree.
Crossing the stream several times gave us a chance to cool our feet. Sometimes unintended! We shared the trail with burros and horses carrying firewood. Santo Domingo Tomaltepec
La Cumbre Several villages are visible on the slopes across the valley. Capulálpam is a Pueblo Magico.
Why we all hike
Our fearless leader, Larry, has created a great website that contains more historical information and maps of all hiking areas for this season.