|A tollbooth on the road to Siby|
This past weekend we ran away from the noise, hustle & bustle, and pollution of the city and we spent Saturday afternoon in Siby, a village about 45minutes outside of Bamako, known for its endless mango groves and Shea butter.
|Hanging out by the market|
Driving into the town we passed through a lively market place, flanked on both sides by row after row of fluffy picture perfect mango trees.
We stopped at the Shea butter cooperative to stock up on soaps and lotions and I even bought a cute tote bag made of the Shea butter cooperative's fabric.
Then we walked next door to grab our gear to go climbing!
Our way up the mountain was interrupted by a herd of cows sharing the road with us, so we had to wait for them to get out of the way before we could go by..
But the extra few minutes gave us some time to soak in the amazing view.
Then we turned off a dirt road onto another dirt "road" (which was essentially just an upward slanting pile of rocks. And slowly crawled our way up to the cliffs.
|I'm holding my camera straight. |
That was the angle at which we were driving up the mountain.
I used to go rock climbing all the time in France when I was a kid, but it's probably been about ten years since I last went. But apparently my muscle memory served me well because after just one time being harnessed in by the guide I started tying all my own knots and planning my own route up the facade.
|Getting harnessed in!|
We did four different climbs, and I made it to the top of every one, which given how un-sport I am, was quite an accomplishment!
That climb was way harder than it looked!
|Shahla surveying her climb|
|And rappelling down!|
|And climbing back up!|
|The view from the top of the third climb.|
|Patrick taking a break halfway up|
|Getting the hang of it|
|Shahla is almost at the top!|
|View from the top!|
|Patrick rappelling down.|
|Me at the top|
|The view of the arch from the top of the hightest climb.|
But I certainly paid for my hubris with a full body of sore muscles the next day.
|Mud walls in Siby|
|Remnants of Colonialism.|
|Shea Butter huts|
By the time we got down the mountain (on something that wasn't even close to being a road--more like a giant pile of rocks) a storm was brewing, and it thunderstormed all the way back to Bamako while I dozed off in the car.
|A brewing storm|
p.s. This whole day of rock climbing cost me about $12.