South exploration

Traffic circle art. Today we drove south to Riobambo, observing flat valley bottomland, quebradas (dissected rivers), fewer flat areas, framing mountains, and modern life. A sample of images follows.

Río Chiche quebrada. Deep.

Out in the countryside, you can see the fields often go up-and-down on the slopes, rather than horizontal. Land division patterns usually have a particular history.

Huge numbers of shade agriculture structures here and there. This is one of the largest complexes we have seen. Some are just three or four adjacent. Also: dairy.

We’re on the right road (yay!), headed for Ríobamba, by Latacunga and Ambato.

Military base

Passing a military base. Another statue.

Abandoned structure. Why? Because the highway took their land and thus the family’s economic support? Speculating….

Also, we are beneath overcast, and the wind bends the trees.

Shade structures and open fields. The overcast was filling in.

Elegant fellow.

Farm fields transitioning to settlement.

Ambitious modern building.

Look at the distant mountains!

Landslide cleanup.

Steeper flank. We are closer to the cloud-bottoms.

Riverside fields, plus those on steeper ground.

Stringing fiber. Two guys on two long red ladders (one pictured), and one on the ground, and another further along with the spool. Never spotted a truck.

In-town lumber mill.

Aha! There’s what we can see of Volcan Chimborazo. Because the earth is not round, and is “squashed,” the top of Chimborazo, at 20,548 ft, is the farthest place on land from the center of the earth. Here we see the lower flanks, and just above where we see snow, the clouds cover the peak and the glaciers there.

Unusual wooden building, with structural elements revealed. Many windows on the second floor, and none on this side on the first.

Pipeline construction on the other side of this quebrada.

We have seen at least two dozen groups of workers trimming the median, and sometimes the sides of the roads. They trim the grass and larger plants, then blow or sweep the bits up, leaving the ditches clean and the surface manicured. I have not see a truck with them yet.

Helado (ice cream) and fruit, cold drinks and snacks. Roadside alimentary temptations. In Mexico snacks is tacos or bocadillos; here it’s more commonly meriendas, which pertains to the afternoon, at least technically.

Elaborate firefighter statue.

Large wood flooring factory.

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