Flying from Brazil to my next stop in Peru I have to cross the longest mountain range in the world, the Andes.
They are over 4,000 miles long and extend through seven South American countries: Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Venezuela.
The Andes range is the world’s highest mountain range outside of Asia and I have learnt that the peak of Chimborazo in the Ecuadorean Andes is actually farther from centre of the Earth than any other location on the planet’s surface, due to the equatorial bulge resulting from its rotation.
In October 1972 a plane carrying a rugby team from Uruguay to Chile crashed in the Andes. The survivors had to fend for themselves amidst the freezing weather at altitude with a very limited supply of food, after the search and rescue operation for them was called off. Only16 of the 45 on board actually survived, and they had to resort to eating the flesh of their team mates who had died to do so.
It is common knowledge that rugby clubs foreign tours can get a little out of hand, but this took things to a whole new level!
The movie Alive told the story of these events, but I am hoping not to have anything similar happen on my own flight. The plane seems to be full of Japanese tourists, most of whom are pensioners. I doubt they would feed a big lump like myself for long!