The town of Baños is on the lower slopes of the Tungurahua volcano, and very much under its influence. The volcano is active with frequent eruptions, and the town lives under the threat of evacuation, and on our drive in from the Andean highlands in 2009 we passed areas where heavy construction equipment was clearing away the rock from the volcano.
This device differed little from that in the painting in the church, though the steel cables looked in good shape—I checked! It consisted of a sort of welded steel cage dangling from the cable, and capable of carrying (cosily!) up to six as it swung its way high across the gorge. Quite an experience and a great view along the valley and especially down onto the Manto de la Novia waterfall.
This gorge marks the junction between the Andean highlands and the Amazon basin. We took the walk back down to the bottom of the gorge through the lush vegetation and enjoyed the flowering orchids.
We crossed back over the river on a simple suspension bridge which had plenty of rotten boards. I think it more likely the Virgin’s intervention would have been needed for that bridge than for the tarabita.
When I crossed