Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Clouds of gas, Caribbean vistas and a punishing climb – X-ray 1 Conquer Volcan Turrialba!

As dawn began to break around the stunning plateau of Bajo Bonilla yesterday, the intrepid trekkers of X-Ray 1 surfaced from their slumber with a sense of excitement and anticipation, for this was a day to live long in the memory! Buoyed by the clear weather and blue skies the team wolfed down their staple porridge breakfast and set off to tackle the 1000m vertical ascent of the active and very lively Volcan Turrialba. Bring it on!!
Carrying just enough supplies for the day, and joined by Fieldbase boys Ross ‘Menzie’ McKenzie and today’s guest blogger ‘Cowboy’ Tom (complete with dodgy Movember facial hair and silly hat), the team made light work of the first part of the climb. Man these X-Ray 1 guys are in good shape!
However, as the morning wore on, the temperature rose and the altitude increased, the pace began to slow. Mercy for Tom and Ross! More frequent and longer breaks were required to fill the lungs with oxygen and to fully appreciate the breathtaking views east to the glorious Caribbean. By this time we were well above the clouds which made for some stunning vistas as you can see from the photos below.
Despite the huge effort required to conquer the sheer ascent, X-Ray 1 nailed the climb and we lapped up the atmosphere as we reached the crater’s edge. The proximal view of enormous bellows of sulphurous gas surging into the blue above and the thunderous rumblings coming from beneath our feet certainly justified the exertion. What an awe-inspiring place and an exhilarating feeling to be that close to such dynamic volcanic activity. Happy days!
Muchas gracias to X-Ray 1 for sharing such an epic day with us and I look forward to catching up with them again for their next food drop on Friday evening.
Ciao for now, enjoy the photos!
The first 100m complete... time for the first break

Barney ´Blue Steel´Flowers

Ross instinctively strikes his ´the beach is that way´pose

A bit of indigestion there Molly... regretting taking the cheese sauce challenge last night? Thought so...

Millie clocks up fall number 487 for the day


X to the 1 baby!

Gas masks... we don´t need no stinking gas masks...
...okay, fine - maybe we do... we still look cool though right?! Ah, well... at least it takes the attention away from Erni ;)

Jump up really high if you haven´t washed for five days

Tom ´Selleck´Blindell... your guest blogger


  1. To Oscar Crol; 11L X-ray 4.
    Hey lieve Ossie,
    Geniet je daar op het strand van Playa Hermosa terwijl je de schildpadden bewaakt voor ongewenste andere beesten... We zijn benieuwd of er ook nog andere dieren daar op en rond het strand zijn. Het lijkt ons in elk geval lekker om een tijdje zo aan de kust te zitten.
    Hier gaat alles prima, het wordt langzamer wat frisser buiten en als de zon (schijnt, maar dat lukt vandaag weer niet) dan is het een stuk minder grijs en vanzelfsprekend is het nu de klok weer terug is vroeg donker. Oma was dinsdag jarig en daar heb ik gezellig geluncht. Veel mensen vragen hoe het met je gaat en vanzelfsprekend krijg je ook de groeten van ze. Over Engeland heb ik je een mail gestuurd als je de kans hebt om die te lezen en antwoorden, is dat helemaal top!
    Veel succes met de nacht patrouilles en het beschermen van de schildpadden. Veel liefs van ons allen, X mama

  2. Monisha Sodha Xray 4
    BALLY!!!js saw some pics of u that have been uploaded, ur lookin well :) hope ur enjoying it out there (u look like u are)!was readin some of the blogs on here n the activities u guys have been doing, sounds like sooo much fun!time has flowwwn by!!missing u lots.cant wait for ur return to this side of the planet!nothing much has been happenin down my end..had an exam!back home nw n js relaxin for a bit then have to study again!boring times!i sent another letter out to u 2 days ago so i hope u get it before u leave,iv sent u a mini update on there about hw the halloween party went!its ok,dont get scared i wont write it all out on here...u may actually start pretending u dont know me!lol!in other news xfactor is gettin worse n worse, the only thing thats keepin me watchin it is gazza!amiras back on enders,little gay ben is hitting on christian and thats about it really!lol!Ok i better go, will msge u on here again soooon,enjoy urself out there bally, n if ur havin regrets about going into the jungle without ur hair straigtners...bit late now!LOL!at least u took water proof mascara with u eh..u never know whats round the corner ;) hahaha lots of love from the other bally!!!xxxxxxx
    ps. hope ur makin lots of friends ;)

  3. MOLLY SANDQUEST X RAY 1 hi molly looks like fun treking up the mountain.u didnt like the cheese sauce then !keep enjoying urself all ok here plenty of rain lots of love dadxx

  4. Millie Pierce, X-ray 1
    Hello Chumling,
    Glad to see you are safe and well, even if you are falling over most of the time. Yesterday was the medsoc themed toga party, I went as a dalmation in a toga, I still have large black spots on my arms - luckily I've got rid of the ones on my face. Even better, I don't have lectures till 12, so had a lovely lie in this morning. I do have a bit of a cold/flu and have done all this week, which has been a bit rubbish, but hopefully I'll have a nice quiet weekend, to get better, and I'll write you a lovely long letter too! Lots of work to catch up on and prep to do for next week, but otherwise nothing very exciting to report. I miss you so much, mais j'aime le fait que one of the photos says 'wowsers' :) Stay safe. Love you xxxxx

  5. Message for Molly Sandquest X-ray 1

    Hi Molly,
    Very jealous Mummy here!
    Just saw the photos of your Volcan Terrialba ascent. Amazing! What an experience.
    (No excuses for not coming up Snowdon with me next time!) You look a bit tired but I'm sure the view and experience certainly made the effort worthwhile. Hope your boots are comfy, nicely worn in now I expect. Well, I'm off to do Tryfan & Glyders in Snowdonia in a few weeks time, not in your league but fun just the same.
    Everyone is well here at home, hope you are staying well Molly. You look fit in the photos.
    Thinking of you. Stay well and take care. Lots of love from home. Mum X

  6. Millie Pierce. X-ray. 1

    Hi Millie Great photos of the trek. I hope your boots didn't smell as bad as they looked!! The weather here. Is getting colder and wetter I went with Pops to look at a boarding school which she loved and I don't want 2 of you to escape next Autumn!! Xanthe has taken most of her mocks! Next is the results. I hope she will have good news for you when you return!!
    Take Care of yourself I love you tons and miss you lots....we all do. You look like you are having such a good time. Love you. Mummy

  7. Chelsie Xray 5. Hi Babe, hope you're ok, all is well here, just missing you like mad. Not long now till bean is with us, Holly is fine as is bean. They have told Holly she might be having baby the week you are back, how cools that :). We have now got something living in our bat box..... a blue tit!!!! And guess who's back....yep the sheep :) millions of them lol. Ryan, E and F came up last week, F is proper funny now with his walking. We always show him your picture and get him to kiss 'aunty Chelsie' :). Jay won a big bottle of Champagne the other night for guessing the weight of a baby, he's not drunk it yet but i'm sure it won't be long before he does. Big hugs and kisses waiting for you oh and a Sunday dinner at Cubley. So so proud of you and just love you so much xxxxxx

  8. Anonymous said.
    HI Molly, looks as if you are having a great time, make the most of it , but have fun too.
    It looks as if it was a great trek, hope you are over the indigestion, & enjoying eating again, well you all look well, so the air etc must be good.
    LOVE Alice & Vic

  9. susanne sandquest13 November 2011 at 11:20

    Molly Sandquest X ray 1
    Hi Molly, you look great in the pictures, like you are really enjoying yourself,if a little thinner than when you left home!Keep it up! What an experience for you, I really hope you are enjoying every aspect of your adventure. Look after yourself and take care. Looking forward to seeing you at christmas time. Love Susannexx


    Hey Miss Molly, hows things? the pictures look amazing I am sure you are having the time of your life even if its hard work. Missing you loads here cant wait to hear your stories over a big roast dinner (after you have had a shower) keep up the great work Lots of love big Bruv and sister in Law x x x x x x x



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