A Travellerspoint blog

tchnical difficulties

You're going to see day 5 and on before days 1-4. My laptops cord died and I can't get on it til I replace it. We had spuratic innternet service and by the time we could get set up, we had passed the village so that is why we have't sent any updates. I think from here on, we'll have service so I should be getting these out. Getting it sent on the service available is like dialup service, really slow!!!
So here ya go!

Posted by Hanser61 03:04 Comments (0)

Day 5

Tues This is going to be a little more difficult as the cord to the computer apears to have conked out so I'm left with the tablet to write this.  Here goes.  we woke up early to take a 6 o clock excursion into one of the Amozons tributataries called Zapote River. The idea was to view the early morning wildlife and also to go fishing.  Wesaw a number of terns, large billed and, parakeets, muscovi duckss Jabir storks, cattle egrets , yellow headed Cara Caras, Sun grebes, greT black hawks, and probably a dozen more that I've forgotten.  We saw three long nosed bats that were so camoflaged that it was nothing sbort of amazing that our guide Ucil was able to detect rhem. We saw spider monkeys and   Monk Saki monkeys We saw a red and green macaw, a festive parrot, a bat falcon and many blackhawks.  there as the ever present turkeyvulture. And many more.   We stopped for a pitstop in the woods where the guides made a makeshift toiletfor the ladies outofa 5 galpaiilanda toilet seat.  They forgot to tellus that it wasn't attached and one lady fell off.   One lady shortly after she got back in the stood up and became agited. Somethinng bit or was biting her. The investigation didn't produce the culprit but it was dtermined to be a fire ant.If you've ever been bitby a fire ant you'll know it andit stays with you for days.     The guides then provided us with box meals that was our breakfast. Again, quite good.   We proceeded on to our fishing spot.  We were going to fish for piranhas.  They parked the front of th boat next to shore and brought out sticks with fishingline a leader and about a #6 hook.  We were given a few pieces of tendeloin to bait the hook. Somehow it seemed strange to exchange tenderloin for fish.  The water was covered with floating debris and brackish. The guides took a paddle and pushed the debris back and we began to fish.  You had to  rustle the water, imitating a critter in distress, then drop your hookinWe caught piranha left and right! We caught herring!  We fished for about 45 minutes catching about 70 fish. I felt lime Nate and Natalie catching the little fish at the end of the dock. Piranha are about the size of panfish but with mucb sharper teeth. Johnny the guide, three a couple of the piranha to the black ringed hawks that had beenfollowing usfor just that oportunity.  They swooped down without hesitation to grab their lunch. We then leisurely returned to ship .  Lunch than an afternoon nap, after all, we were up early.   At 4pm we were given a nature talk by Johnny, one of the guides.   He explained what areas are in a national park and are protected and where there was a buffer zone where the government still had some control of the activities.  He explained that unlike Brazil down river, Peru maintains the Amazon in it's natural state, overrseeing that it doesn'tget over fished or harvested.  They get the cooperation of the local Indians to do this. They report poachers to the athorities.     Then we boarded our skiffs to go night viewing.  We saw some pink dolphinson the wa. We entered a tributary that flowed oposite of what you'd, inland rather than out to the main river. That was because this was the beginninng of the rainy season and the main river was rising, sending the overflow into the into the tributariestributaries.The weather for so far has been holding out as the onlyrain we had was when we arrived in Iquitos. Weenterred the tributary and began our evening viewing ofthe Amazon.  The sounds are different and a lot ofthe wildlife come outto feed.  Besides the raptors we saw terns, storks bats, They guided us into the weeds to seewhatkind of critters we could find. We tookout our flashlights and started our hunt. I found the biggest spider I'd ever seen! He calledit a wolf spider. it had to be 3inches in diameter and was actively hunting.  Johnny found the tiniest frog I'd ever seen. He called it a long nosed striped frog.  He found a couple more but I don't recall the names. As we moveda bit we saw eyes and a long narrow snout.  it was a white cayman They can grow to around 6-8 feet. This one was around 4 feet. The people in the other boat saw a monk saki monkey. We found a black cayman that was about 8 ft.  Black caymans can grow to 18 ft and can be pretty aggressive. One of the guides got a radio message for us to come to there boat.  As we approached we saw the guide holding a 3 ft white cayman. He passed it arou d for anyone to hold for a kodak moment. I volunteered so now I can add caymanHandler to myresume.  It was pretty dark bynow but I have to comment on the night sky.  I'm not sure if it wasbecause wewereat the equator or if it was becauseof the lack of any lights but the sky was awsome in it's brilliance. Once the qurter moon went down Venus took over.  I've never seen it so bright. You could easily navigate with it's light. Oh and the fireflies!   Their lights seemed  larger but I can't say if the bug was larger as I didn't get a closeup but they seemed to be everywhere witha spotlight.   Our trip back to the boat was not without a story.  A guy in the other boat who's name is Murry from Alabama, was sitting toward the back of the skiff and we we're traveling at about 25 mph when something hit him in the back of the shoulder.  Listening to him tell the story, he considers himself pretty macho but this had him squelling like a little girl.  He thoughr it was a bat. When he tried to hit it off he couldn't .  Turned out to be a 7 in catfish with one of it's barbs stuck in him. Dr, Leslie did a 10 minute emergency extraction of the barb while the patient was downing some rum that was kept for medicinal purposes.   Dinner consisted of stuffed Peruvian peppers, a salad  with hearts of palm miixed Peruvian stir fry and of course, our pirahna.  They tasted like perch. This night we celebrated a young couple's 6th anniversity with a candle lit cake and a serenadeby members ofthe crew.

Posted by Hanser61 02:56 Comments (0)

Flight down

60 °F

We flew Copa Air (Who?). I know, I know, I thought the same thing that we'd be sitting next to a farmer with his chickens. Turns out that they are part of the United Airlines Alliance. Actually, it was the first time we got meals on a plane in years! And they were pretty good. I say meals as we had one segment of the trip that went to Panama City, Panama and then we changed planes to continue to Lima. Altogether it was about 10 1/2 hours with about 7 1/2 actual flying time. We were met at the airport by a person for the tour and were driven to our hotel, Swissotel. Quit nice and in a very upscale area. The tour guide wanted to assure us that it was safe to walk around this area. Though driving here from the airport, the city wasn't as bad as I was expecting. The drivers were awful! Stop signs are just a suggestion.
We had a pleasant surprise as we were coming into Panama City. We flew right over the locks for the Panama Canal at the gulf side. If I remember it right, that was the Mira Flores locks. I took a couple of pictures of the view.

Posted by Hanser61 20:01 Archived in Peru Comments (3)

Twas the night before the trip and all thru the house....

Well we're packed and we've checked the list twice. We watched a youtube video last night of a couple of hikers climbing Huayna Picchu, the 'stairs of death'. We found ourselves gasping and wondering if we may want to reconsider that part of the trip to Machu Picchu. It's about an hour's walk up the side of a mountain along some trails that dwindle to nothing more than a single foot path with the side of the mountain on one side and a deadly drop off into the valley below on the other. The video was spectacular in it's vividness of the view. Along with the vividness it was pretty good at allowing the viewer to experience the climb without actually doing it. No I'm not talking myself out of it, just saying.

Posted by Hanser61 17:00 Archived in USA Comments (1)

Getting excited!

Weve been collecting the things to bring. Trying not to over pack. We've been trying to decide if we're going to do the malaria pill thing. Some of the side affects sound worse than the diisease. It's not required but if there's a mosquito in the place it'll find me. Our plans of learning Spanish before this trip didn't work out so well so I'm going to have to rely on my highschool spanish lessons. The 2 things I figure we'll need are bano and cerveza.

Posted by Hanser61 17:46 Comments (0)

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