I was travelling in Argentina about 5 years ago, through the town Bariloche. In summer, the tourist town is a hub for travellers looking to go hiking up the neighbouring mountains. On my second day I planned a trip which would take me up a mountain one day, stay overnight at an outpost, and come back down the next. I couldn’t wait.
I should note that as a backpacker, I was travelling solo. This meant that friendships were temporary and companions on such day trips came by chance. I was alone on this hike so I took the chance to pack my favourite necessity – the iPod. The best thing about travelling alone is listening to a couple Led Zeppelin albums in a row!
I also managed to pack some other essentials - water, food, sleeping gear, a couple pesos, and, of course, my camera.
The trek was long; longer than expected. But rather than offering a challenging gradient, it would zig-zag up the mountain like those roads in the Tour de France: up to the left, hook around a corner; up to the right. Feeling adventurous, I figured I could save some time by cutting straight up through the bush from one road to another, effectively halving the time taken. The best thing about travelling alone is that when you had a great idea, no-one is there to second guess you!