Colombia: hiking from Barichara to Guane

This album follows on from Barichara.

From Barichara you can walk an ancient mule track to the village of Guane, two hours away on foot.

The view from Barichara the previous evening. Down in the valley you catch a glimpse of the Río Suárez, named after Gonzalo Suárez Rendón (see my post on Tunja).
The track as it descends from Barichara.
These darlings, about the size of a large chicken, are actually a type of vulture.
The track is surprisingly wide in places. H theorises that this allowed mules with wide loads to pass each other.
When you have just begun to suspect the place doesn‚Äėt actually exist Guane finally heaves into view.
The church in Guane.
As in Barichara, the church is surprisingly large, especially given that the village is not. Unlike Barichara, there seems to be a strong consensus on the date of its construction: 1786.
Guane is the name of the local brand of Indios. The village was founded in the early 17th c. by the Spaniards. Missionaries liked the Indios to settle in one place, and the Indios themselves seem to have been relatively amenable to the idea, as, surprisingly to my mind, they seem often to have been to adopting the new faith, turning into quite ardent followers.
I have an idea that the size of the churches in both B. and G. may have been due to both places having an essentially indigenous population, with the congregation perhaps swelled by people living close to, rather than in, the actual settlements. (Barichara got going in 1705, when somebody spotted some form of apparition of the Virgin Mary there.)

Time and again I was struck by the excellent state of preservation of these ancient buildings. Throughout our entire trip, among the very numerous historic buildings in Colombia we did not come across a single one that looked neglected (with the exception perhaps of a few of the many old houses in the old city of Bogot√°, which could do with a spot of paint).
We were desperately searching the somnolent village square for a cup of coffee when we were taken in tow by one of two young Belgian women who have just opened a kind of caf√©-cum-hostel off the square. I think it needs to make itself more visible as you‚Äėre unlikly to discover it on your own. Best of luck to them.
Hiking back. Spring is in the air — the landscape was still very dry everywhere (the picture was taken in late January), but the appearance of new leaves on trees and bushes seemed to indicate the approach of the rainy season.

Next album — Colombia: on the road