The routine of a volunteer here at Eco Caminhos is not only about bioconstruction, organic agriculture, and agroforestry, but we also like to carry out various activities together; from movie and volunteer nights, to hikes, trails and camping trips.
In August 2018, we organized a camping trip for the volunteers, including Maria (one of our short-term volunteers) and her family, to one of the most beautiful tourist spots in the region: Três Picos state park.
Três Picos is made up of three granitic mountains encompassed by diverse nature. It is also the largest park in the state of Rio de Janeiro, and covers the municipalities of Teresópolis, Nova Friburgo, Guapimirim, Silva Jardim and Cachoeiras de Macacu.
Preparations for the trip began with the purchase and preparation of the food we would be taking to the campsite. Our meals consisted of a campfire dinner on the first evening, a large breakfast on the second day which preceded the trail, and some food to celebrate arriving at the peak.
Anyone who knows us knows that good food is always among our priorities. The menu included eggplant burgers, soup, corn for popcorn, potatoes, homemade bread and biscuits and a variety of fruits. Well, we were sure no one would die of hunger!
On the afternoon of August 29, bags, tents and food were ready, and with the team excited we drove to the park entrance. The first hour walk (without guide) led us to the Valley of the Gods (1,700 meters), where the free camping area is situated. It includes bathrooms, refreshing cold showers, a sink, a wood stove and a fire place (no electricity).
A little before the camping area, the park guards base is housed. They were incredibly helpful with information.
Once within the campsite you can choose from several trails, all of which are signposted with information detailing the level of difficulty and expected time of arrival.
We arrived, set up our tents, and took advantage of the late afternoon playing Frisbee. Once it was dusk we lit the fire to do away with the cold and began to eat dinner. We shared luau with lots of singing and guitar along with our campmates.
The next day, we woke up early, had a wholesome breakfast, and opted for the Dragon Head trail (4 km one way, about 1h30min, maximum height 2082m). The day was cloudy, so the view was not as expected but it was a fantastic day for the walk. Upon reaching the peak, there was a some cloud cover accompanied by some strong winds, but it made for an humorous time.
Once the clouds cleared, we were able to appreciate the grandeur of the view, and what incredible view it was.
These occasions bring the group closer together, providing moments of integration, relaxation and fun for everyone. This is another side of the daily lives of the volunteers who come to Eco Caminhos in search of new experiences, contact with nature, and community life.
Are you interested in living with us? Visit our volunteer page and learn how you can be part of our team.