Yesterday, as you will see from the \’Towns and Villages\’ page, we (Maria Elena, Marcela, and myself) went to investigate Guarne, a town about half an hour away from here. I won\’t repeat what is on the other page, however, after visiting the town itself we went off for lunch, before heading into the hills.
I had recently bought new software for my GPS, and as we had all day, decided it did not matter if we got lost, so we set it up and headed off.
The first stage of the trip, took us out to Rio Negro, and approaching the villages from \’the back\’ so in effect we had done a \’U\’, but the road we ended up on for 12km, was little more than a Forest track, stone, rubble and mud, fine for a 4×4, but for a little Corsa, it was a challenge, however, we did see some lovely Fincas along the way, and now know we have to establish what the approach is like before venturing out to view any.
Once back on a \’proper\’ road, we thought that was it, but we were wrong!!! after a while we came to another stretch, and this, we do not want to negotiate again…
We continued to wind our way down the mountain, Maria Elena and Marcela, getting visibly more worried, from the GPS I knew this stretch was 6.5km, and by this time we were over half way, when Marcela asked me to stop alongside some children, and she asked where the road came out, this was the nearest Marcela has come to looking pale!
It took us through Comuna 8, which is the most dangerous zone in Medellin, through which no one especially Foreigners travel unless they have to, and definitely no one visits after dark, people have been known to enter the area, never to be seen again. It is an area where displaced Gangsters and Criminals hold up, it was built illegally, and is a law unto itself. Unfortunately turning back was not an option, so I said that if anyone stood in front of the car to try and stop us, I would just go over the top of them!
There was not a Policeman in sight, they do not venture into the area, unless on a raid. The road was no better than that we had already negotiated, it was like driving through somewhere in the wild west. Fortunately nothing happened, but out of Comuna 8, and the next was a driving challenge, the roads down through the next Comuna, were near verticle, you would drive a stretch, come to the flat, cross, and not see the next stretch, until you tipped the front of the car over, and down you went again, it was a good job the brakes worked.
Once we were clear of the area, you could hear and see the relief within the car. We learned a lesson, we are going to buy a paper map, to reinforce any use of the GPS in future!