We learn that a Guanaco (Lama guanaco) has been killed, surely by a Puma, close to the lake shore. This is a great opportunity to see Condors in action, but our first day takes us, on horseback, to the top of high cliffs. Condors usually perch or nest under the cliffs, where no predator can reach them. After an hour and a half, we reach the top of the cliff, as as we are doing so, there are Condors everywhere. Attracted by our movement, this very curious animal, comes at us flying from below the cliffs, then at eye level, and as they navigate the thermals, they check us out from above. We take lots of photos, from every angle, the amazing wing span, decorated with white feathers, can be seen when they are below or when they turn to look at us, over and over again. It is a condorfest!
We return to the house in the afternoon. We want to build some sort of hide, close to the guanaco carcass, to see if we can find the condors, feeding on the ground. Putting a canvass, with some plants on top, offers enough cover to give it a try! We wake up before dawn, and we slowly walk to our “hide” for what we assume will be a long wait. And it is……After waiting all day, we only see a couple flying around, and one that lands about 50 meters away…..Tired and hungry, we walk back to the house,, wth a big question…..should we try again tomorrow???? We did!
Again, before dawn, we are covered in layers and ready for at least a long morning. We had decided to pull the plug by 1 PM……Well, getting close to noon, nothing except the roaring wind……suddenly a large cloud on top of us….flying against the wind? then another one, and another one…..in 20 minutes, we had 15 Condors feeding, on the ground, respecting their pecking order, and more flying around. Our cameras in silent, one shot modes kept clicking for, what was about an hour, and then, we had what we had come for. We walked back to the house, hungry, for a great meal!!! Patience had won again!!!