Don Pablo Edronkin

Trekking Tips: Finding Your Way in A Bamboo Forest.

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In areas covered with vegetation, and especially canes, as when you get into a bamboo or colihue cane forest, you can easily find your way thorough even if there is no apparent trail just by looking at the base of those plants.

In such places, locals make cuts in the canes to open a way for themselves, and those cuts, generally performed with machetes, are made in a diagonal way because it is much easier to do so than to attempt to cut a cane by smashing it perpendicularly.

Thus, by looking at the base of the canes you will be able to find diagonally cut sections of various lengths whenever you are near a trail, visible or not.

One big problem can be water: cane wood is extremely flexible and difficult to cut, especially in the case of bamboos and thus, traversing a small distance down or uphill can be a real battle.

Most water streams are found within canyons cut by erosion over time; even in the case of relatively shallow cuts, having hundreds of canes around you can make the job of going thorough them really difficult.

It is advisable to leave your backpack and gear nearby and go down the canyon without anything that might get stuck or fall because it would be impossible to recover (just think about the hard time that you will be having walking straight there, and then consider what would be to actually seek for something lost).

It is important, alas, to leave your gear not very far away and to know exactly that spot and how to return; you would not like to get lost and spend hours looking for your belongings and essential equipment.

In order to collect water from such a stream, take with you a small jar or mug and a canteen; otherwise you may not be able to fetch a lot of water and you could spill it all over while you return to where you left your things.

It is also usually advisable to fill your canteen(s) whenever you find such a water stream; the next one may be too far away or too difficult to reach.

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Colihue canes.
Water streams may be very difficult to reach within
bamboo or colihue cane forest; note that there is no
place to stay or camp.

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