Santa Rosa de Osos - Part 5

Hiking in Santa Rosa Pablo and I arrived in Santa Rosa on Monday morning. There was a screening in Medellin on Wednesday, so although both of us would have liked to have stayed in Santa Rosa for another few days, Wednesday had to be our last day.

On Tuesday night Jhonda asked "Would you like to go for a hike tomorrow morning? I can take you to a place where people still mine for gold by hand." That was a no brainer for me, of course I said "yes."

The next morning Pablo and I got up early and headed to the main square to meat up with Jhonda. Jhonda showed up in a government truck and even had hiking boots for us. We all hopped into the truck and headed out of town.

About 25 minutes outside of town, the truck dropped us off at another dirt road. Jhonda, Pablo and I hopped out and began walking. We passed a few mining spots and then the dirt road slowly turned into a walking trail. After about another 15 minutes we came upon a spot where locals where mining by hand. They had a giant water wheel and a whole operation set up. The miners were very friendly, showing us how the mining process works. I shot a few portraits of the main miner, one of which ended up being my favorite shot of the trip.

We continued our hike, passing by and talking to other farmers. We finally ended up in a small village were we had coffee with a retired professor from Pablo and Jhonda's university. We then caught a bus back to town, just in time to give one last screening. After the screening Pablo and I packed up our bags and headed back to Medellin.

All in all Santa Rosa far exceeded all expectations I had. I could of went home right then and there and have been happy. The hospitality i received from everyone in Santa Rosa was unbelievable, not to mention the access I had to shoot was amazing. Santa Rosa was by far the highlight of the trip.

Santa Rosa de Osos 6am in Santa Rosa.

Santa Rosa de Osos Pablo waiting for Jhonda.

Santa Rosa de Osos Jhonda in the back of the pick up.

Santa Rosa de Osos I'm not sure if we were in fog or a cloud forest, as they are called, but in either case we hit some interesting weather.

Santa Rosa de Osos Pablo in the truck with the sun behind him.

Santa Rosa de Osos The truck could only take us so far.

Santa Rosa de Osos The first mining site we came upon. I got a few looks here.

Santa Rosa de Osos Jhonda and Pablo over looking a site of large scale mining. Mining is one eco issues Santa Rosa deals with.

Santa Rosa de Osos Effects on a small stream.

Santa Rosa de Osos One of the many primitive tools.

Santa Rosa de Osos The dirt road turns into a walking trail.

Santa Rosa de Osos Miners Two miners in Santa Rosa.

Santa Rosa de Osos Miners Gold miner in Santa Rosa. My favorite shot of the trip.

Santa Rosa de Osos Miners The miners extract soil from the local country side...

Santa Rosa de Osos and then pan for gold...

Santa Rosa de Osos by hand...

Santa Rosa de Osos and also with this giant water wheel, which has been around for 300 years, or something crazy like that.

Santa Rosa de Osos The miners build everything they need.

Santa Rosa de Osos Every man in Santa Rosa seemed to carry a machete with them.

Santa Rosa de Osos We continued our hike, but unfortunately the sun never came out.

Santa Rosa de Osos A farmer we briefly chatted with. Once again notice the machete.

Santa Rosa de Osos Climbing down one of the hill sides to a small valley.