Monday, July 5, 2010

MVX goes to Mexico

This is surely the most unique trip we offer on several different levels. You think you know Mexico? We are ready to give you a completely different taste of this "familiar" land. We combine the physical challenge of ascending one of Mexico's highest volcanoes with the thrill of descending one of it's most amazing gorge rivers. And to top it off, we will share the remarkable Dinner In The Dark experience...where we will enjoy a delicious meal served in a room completely void of light...with a remarkable blind wait staff providing guidance.

The Ascent:
Malinche, 4,480 meters high is an extinct volcanoe that rises 2,000 meters above the Puebla altiplano. The ascent is physically demanding, primarily due to the altitude gain, however the terrain is not exceptionally difficult. It is mostly done on a trail that winds it´s way through the forest up to 4,000 meters and then cruises up a loose ash, scree slope. A hundred meters below the summit there is a boulder section that requires some scrambling. The summit provides a remarkable view of the other 3 surrounding vocanoes and the sprawl of Mexico City below. In all, a 3 day ascent to almost 15,000ft.
Alter descending from the summit of Malinche we drive down for an overnight stay at a picturesque 17th century hacienda...Jalcomulco Veracruz.

The Descent:
Jalcomulco Veracruz is a picturesque village amidst the Veracruz rainforest, our take off point for a descent of the beautiful Río Pescados. This fun and exciting moderate river rafting experience takes you through the core of the jungle ecosystem, passing just under 300 ft cliffs, waterfalls and various flora and fauna typical of the region. The river runs narrow and swift through a combination of mango plantations and tropical forests. From the river source of Descabezadero, where springs gush out of a fern covered natural limestone amphitheatre to the take out, 20 km downstream, the river offers almost nonstop Class II and III whitewater. The rapids are perfect for first timers as well as technical and challenging enough for experienced river runners to enjoy.

Once you have completed the 3 hour raft journey through the jungle we continue with our theme of "descent" as we head off to do some rappellingl in the heart of the Veracruz jungle. Several rappel lines will be set up for a slow, controlled desecent into some of the stunning limestone caves that are found in the Veracruz region.
The descending continues as we begin our canyoneering section of the trip. We will hike and slide down a wonderfully polished and dramatic canyon that has sevearal optional jumps ranging from 10 to 30 ft. into crystal clear pools.
Then, to top it off we let the day "soak" into us as we participate in a local custom...a Temascal (steam bath) to unwind from it all.

Dinner In The Dark:
After all of that excitement...this is quite possilby the highlight of the trip.The taste is EVERYTHING in the dark! Imagine eating an entire, exquisite meal with not the slightest bit of light. With the complete loss of vision — and the resulting heightening of the other four senses — an evening at Mexico's first-ever dark restaurant is an extraordinary culinary adventure. As taste buds work overtime to discover fresh nuances in well-known flavors, even simple, everyday foods like potatoes or plain yogurt morph into nouvelle cuisine. Your waiters play a particularly important role — all of them are either visually handicapped or completely blind, and they not only serve the meals but also act as guides to you, the stumbling diner. Once they have shepherded the clientele through a "light lock" to their table in the pitch black dining room, the specially trained staff offer reassurance to the nervous and instruction on how to best to tackle the food and drink.
This meal always provides the diners with endless conversation topics..."my senses were so heightened". "I made such a mess". "The wait staff was incredible". A dinner in the dark experience will forever change how you perceive the world around you.
All of this in just 7 days! An amazing journey into Mexico...from the one of highest points to one of the lowest...we take you on a trip through the land of enchantment.

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