Back here in Cusco again taking it easy after our Jungle expedition, the trip was great, we got to see many many awesome creatures and jungle scenery.
The trip started on the wrong foot though with the cachup drinks with the inca trail group getting a little out of hand, we got home at 2:30am for our 5:00am pickup way too drunk too pack we hit the sack… we awoke not to our alarm at 4:00 with enough time to pack, but to the pickup driver banging on our door… what followed was a mad scramble to shove stuff in a pack and get out, as a consiqence we had no idea what we?d actually packed. Turned out we did pretty well, over packing rather than leaving out.
From here onto our small 20 seater 4×4 bus (not well setup for tall people I?ll add) for the first 8 hours of our jorney, we slept a bit but the windy road across the Andies was rough, I slept in some weird position and somehow managed to pinch a nerve in my back just to make it a little more uncomfortable. We stayed the night in the upper jungle (on the east side of the Andies) in these nice little humpy/lodges with mosqito netted beds and no windows or doors for that matter.
This style of lodging was standard through out the trip bar one night in tents on the river bank on the second night, but this first night had no where near the level of bugs and insects we?d meet on the rest of the trip.
Second day consisted of another 5 hours on that fricken bus with a breif stop for last minute supplies, the rest of the traveling was to be by boat so Zetty and I grabbed a crate of 1.1 litre Ceversa and some sprite, a bottle of Rum (which was cheaper than one of the beers and as nasty as you?d expect for the price) some coke and a bottle of wine… we were met with some strange looks and sniggers when we carried it onto the bus.
Once we got on the boat Zetty and I quickly nabbed pole position in the front, plenty of room for the crate of piss and prime possy for spotting animals, 5 minutes after the boat headed up the river we ripped the scab of the first beer and so started the animal spotting.
Our group lead by Ruby (5 foot nothing macheti wielding peruvian bush woman) consisted of 6 older Germans (5 women and Migel) and Victor the Russian, nice enough poeple but they were completly dead weight in the animal spotting, Zetty and I had to rely on each other, the guide and Ricardo (the boat driver) for all animals we saw. I think Zetty and I did pretty bloody well in fact claiming at least 50% of the spots.
The rest of the trip consisted of early boat rides to various camps, quick rest and a bush walk, lunch and a little siesta in the hottest part of the day with another walk and perhaps a catamaran paddle around a lake before dinner then bed ready for another early start. I think the latest we got up the whole trip was 5:00am, not a bad thing when it?s so muggy, you basicaly can?t do anything from 12:30 to 2:30, just laying in you?re bed snoozing is enough to make you sweat!
Through out these trips we spotted some awesome animals, the Germans and Ruby were a little too into birds so we saw plenty of them, the monkeys were my favorites, we saw 4 different types and most of them we saw numerous times, each time they?d be up to something else.
We saw the worlds biggest rodent the Cabavari (the size of a pig), the worlds biggest ant the Cobra Ant, the worlds biggest Otter the Giant Otter, Wild pig thing, white and black Caymon (Crocks), Pirana, Turantula (scary because to find them we went to our huts!), a snake of some sort (didn?t get a good enough look to id), Army Ants that clear a path for them selves, Fire Ants, millions of butter flies, hundreds of spiders, millipiedes the size of my pinky finger and a shit load of birds!!!
Again it?s a thing that you can?t convey well enough to do it justice, you really have to be there to get it, the jungle we were in is not that unlike parts Dantree rain forest in Australia just filled with different stuff.
Unfortunaly we didn?t get to spot a big cat dispite our best efforts, it?s just luck of the draw I guess.
Can?t wait to get some of the photos developed I was pretty snap happy and playing with many of the settings of our big camera, I think there?ll be some pearlers.
I know you can?t go to the Amazon and complain about the heat and insect bites but man it certainly makes it pretty damn uncomfortable, during the day especialy down on the water you?re constantly surrounded in a cloud of sand flies, these tiny little flies (smaller than a midgy you can hardly see them) unbelivably bite like a mosquito.
Then at night they change shifts with the mosquitos, basically you?ve gotta be in long pants and long sleved shirt the whole time, I didn?t actaully have anything other than t-shirts so had to poison myself constantly with the mega strong (80% deet) repelent we took, I was a bit concerned when the outside of my pen began to melt during a jornal entry after leaving the deet residue on my hands! All in all we did pretty well for bites with only a dozen or so each.
Well that was mostly it, we seemed (at the moment anyhow) to have returned tropical desease free and without being inpregnated with spider eggs or fly larva… bonus!
Had an awesome time.