High Altitude in Quito, Ecuador

Quito’s elevation is 2,850 m (9,350 ft) so I was preparing for some mild altitude sickness as I had experienced it when we were in Lhasa, Tibet (3,650 m or 11,860 ft). As we were standing in the Immigration line-up, we noticed some wooziness and I thought, “Okay, this isn’t too bad”.

It was hard going up the two flights of stairs to our room in the hotel. I noticed that I did not have a headache yet, which I was expecting. As we were trying to drift off into the dreamworld, as soon as our breathing slowed, we would jerk awake from not enough oxygen. I think eventually fatigue took over and we both passed out.

Amazingly so, the next morning I felt pretty good. No headache, no shortness of breath. As long as I moved slowly I was fine. This experience was alot different than the Lhasa experience, but there was a 2,500 ft difference in elevation. There were no issues falling asleep on night two.

Hopefully my body is getting used to this high elevation thing with trips to Lhasa, Quito, Mesa Verde National Park, Colorado (8,572 feet or 2,613 m) and Taos, New Mexico (6,967 feet  or 2,124 m) so the next time we venture into the clouds (Machu Picchu at 7,970 ft or 2,430 m)  I will not suffer like I did in Lhasa.

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