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Luckily there are various local hiking groups, or grupos de caminantes, in Colombia. Especially in Boyacá, the neighbouring region to Bogotá’s Cundinamarca. My goal is to reach a snowy Andean peak by the end of the year, so every weekend has to be hiking-weekend during 2017. We joined the wonderful people of Samacá on their Saturday hike up the hill to Páramo Rabanal.

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The path, on the occasions where there was one, followed the stream and waterfall  Golpe de agua.

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The typical Boyacá patchwork of agricultural land.

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Potatoes and more potatoes. I always feel quite at home in Boyacá. The crops and flora are  the same as to be found in Västergötland back home in Sweden.

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The mountains are just slightly higher here. 2700-3200 meters above sea level around Samacá.

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This day we had a bit of bad luck but also experienced something quite typical for Colombia, which I think is important to shed some light upon, if it’s ever going to change.

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By the top of the waterfall, there is a beautiful dam. It is just that the company that owns it had placed armed guards here and there, who claimed that the municipal permit we had from the mayor to transit wasn’t valid.

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There’s really not much you can do to change the mind of a 19 years old boy with a gun, so we never got to the higher parts of the páramo. But it was beautiful nonetheless. And there were plenty of blackberries that noone cared to stop us from picking.

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Though we had to get up really early to drive the 2,5 hours from Bogotá to Samacá to join the hike, we’ll do it again. The hikes are free of cost, accompanied by a knowledgeable guide and have the necessary security measures to transit areas that might implicate too big risks of assault if we went on our own. I’m starting to think that I might want to move to Boyacá. Meanwhile, I’m browsing Facebook to join as many groups of caminantes as I possibly can to fill the hiking schedule for the year.

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