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Toro Toro – Hunting Dinosaurs in Bolivia

Toro Toro – Bolivia

July 6, 2014 – July 9, 2014

Full Toro Toro Photo Gallery Here.

After La Paz we jumped on an all night bus to Cochabamba and caught a colectivo to the tiny remote village of Toro Toro.  This tiny town in the middle of the remote Bolivian badlands, is well known for dinosaur prints, fossils, caving and lots of hiking!

Our ride from Cochabamba to the small town of Toro Toro, deep in the dry canyons of central Bolivia began on yet another crowded colectivo.

Our colectivo for the 4 hour ride to Toro Toro, on bumpy dusty roads.
Our colectivo for the 4 hour ride to Toro Toro, on bumpy dusty roads.
Toro Toro - Bolivia.
Toro Toro – Bolivia.
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Toro Toro takes it dinosaur “heritage” maybe a little too seriously. This is the main plaza.

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Joining a tour group we headed out into the dry badlands for some hiking and caving.

The crocodile teeth mountains.  The indigenous people thought the triangular shaped mountains resembled the teeth of a crocodile.
The crocodile teeth mountains. The indigenous people thought the triangular shaped mountains resembled the teeth of a crocodile.

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Entrance to the valley filled with sandstone caves.

The sandstone caves of Toro Toro, a series of massive interconnected rooms with a sandy floor.

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After visiting the surface sandstone caves we visited a subterranean cave system still actively being carved out by running water.  Blind fish were swimming in the pool we stopped at.

Krista getting ready for caving.
Krista getting ready for caving. The helmets were absolutely necessary, as we hit our heads on cave walls almost half a dozen times.
The entrance to the cave.
The entrance to the cave.

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Some of the spaces were so tight only one person could squeeze through at a time.  Don't come here if you are claustrophobic.
Some of the spaces were so tight only one person could squeeze through at a time, sometimes on your hands, knees, stomach, etc. Don’t come here if you are claustrophobic.

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On our second day in Toro Toro, we went on a hike through the canyons in search of waterfalls and dinosaur footprints.

Descending through the dry riverbeds to the Toro Toro canyon.
Descending through the dry riverbeds to the Toro Toro canyon.

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Descending into the canyon we passed a massive dinosaur footprint bigger than Krista. This print is from a massive sauropod.

The Toro Toro Canyon and waterfalls.

Toro Toro Canyon.
Toro Toro Canyon.

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After exiting the canyons we hiked to other dry riverbeds and found some exposed dinosaur prints.

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Toro Toro turned out to be a highlight of Bolivia.  The small town has only a few tourists and lots of cheap lodging options.  If you can stand the 3-4 hour bumpy ride over dirt roads in a packed van to get there it is worth a visit.