Peru – Tambopata National Reserve

2011.7.8In the morning, I had a walk around the lodge and took some more pictures. Parrots sang and frogs croaked, I was immersed in the sounds of nature.

An Insect on a Leaf
A little bug on a leaf.
Trees in Rainforest
Grow higher …
Root of the Tree
… and root deeper.

Our plan for the day was to take boat upstream for 4 hours to Chuncho. We would camp there over night and watch Macaw’s clay lick the next day morning. Most visitors to the lodge take 3 days and 2 nights tour, so they only go to see Macaws in a place near the lodge. We certainly wished that we could see more for the extra day and money we spent.

Tour Schedule
The tour schedules planed on lodge’s white board.

Unlike our White Desert trip in Egypt, which we went with only a driver and a guide, we had a large team of 5-person here, our guide, a captain (driver), his assistant, a cook and the lodge owner’s daughter-in-law. I guess visitors rarely take trips like this, so the owner’s daughter-in-law was interested in seeing those Macaws too.

After one hour, we arrived at the first check point of Tambopata National Reserve. We signed our names on their huge signature book and they stamped a puma mark on our passports.

First Check Point to Enter Tambopata National Reserve
The first check point after entering Tambopata National Reserve.

The captain had sharp eyes. He often spotted something unusual on the bank and he stopped the boat and pointed them to us.

A Sloth on the Tree Top
We couldn’t figure it out but it might be a sloth on the tree top.
A Turtle Family
A turtle family.
A Capybara Family
A capybara family. They are the largest living rodents in the world.

It was the dry season – sometimes the water level was too low and captain’s assistant had to use a long pole to move the boat.

The Captain's Assistant had to watch the Depth of the Water and Obstacles.
Captain’s assistant used a long pole to help the boat pass the shallow water.

He also had to watch the river for torrents and obstacles. The river was smooth most of the time, but it was turbulent with floating logs and underwater reefs at some places. I heard the assistant talked with our guide about one incident he had, although I don’t understand Spanish, but from their moves, I knew the assistant was saying that he was on a boat that hit the reefs, shot up and threw him into the water.

Torrents with Reefs
The torrents of the river.

After another two and a half hours, we reached the second check point. The Tambopata River and the Malinowski River merged here. Their color difference is quite distinctive – the Tambopata River is clean and the Malinowski River is in brown color.

The Confluence of the Tambopata and Malinowski Rivers
The confluence of the Tambopata and Malinowski Rivers.
The Monkey Steals Bananas
A monkey “stealing” bananas at the check point.

We kept on sailing upstream in Tambopata River. The water became clear and tranquil.

A Tranquil River
The tranquil Tambopata River.

It took us some time to locate a small island to dock the boat. Our guide said, the last time he came here was several years ago, the water and land looked very different now. The river changes route every year. An experience driver is necessary to sail in the river like this.

Our Boat
We docked the boat at an island.

While others were setting up camps, our guide took us to a short hike on the island. The island is covered by the secondary forest. The plant species is not very diversified.

The Guide is Making a Walking Stick for Us.
Our guide was making a walking stick from a tree branch.
Vine grows attaching to the tree trunk
A vine attaches to the tree trunk.
A Colorful Bug
A colorful bug.

We came back without walking very far. Four tents have been setup. The captain and his assistant would sleep on the boat. We had some free time playing around the island, while others swimming in the river and preparing the dinner. It was warm during the night and surprisingly there were not many mosquitoes. It was much more comfortable than we imagined.

Sunset over the Tambopata River
Sunset over the Tambopata River.

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. wavelet

    You got some really nice pictures of clay-licking macaws.

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