home of Alpacas, Machu Picchu, and the headwaters of the Amazon,
and a country I've wanted to visit for many years. In November,
2003, they held their annual Alpaca Fiesta in Arequipa, Peru.
It was time to go!
an initial look at my Peruvian journey, with more pictures and
description to come in future updates.
Click on pictures to enlarge
PICCHU: This ruin from the Inca empire is situated high
in the Andes mountains.
of a Royal city
HOME OF THE ALPACAS: The high plains of the Andes,
at 13,000-15,000 feet in Peru, Chile and Bolivia, is where the
"new world camels" live ... Alpacas, Llamas, Guanacos
and Vicunas. The South Americans domesticated the Llama
and Alpaca thousands of years ago, using the Llama for transport
and the Alpaca for it's warm and wonderful fiber.
drove past alpacas grazing on the plains, en route to the annual
Chaccu, where wild vicunas are rounded into a pen, sheared,
and released. The Indians who live on the high plains
welcomed us with music and dancing before the roundup, and we
all herded the vicunas together.
FIBER MILLS: Some major alpaca fiber mills are located
in Arequipa. Quite a contrast between the bags of fiber
in my closet and the mind-boggling mounds of fiber at the mill!