Colombia is a very large country with amazing people, an amazing nature, an amazing fauna and a diversity of vegetation … I’ve spent all my 90 days and I’ve even thought about extending it. But the need for passengers on the road, there are more places to go, I continued.
The trip to Vaupés was the most extraordinary one I’ve seen in three months. I was hoping to see the Amazons, and since I came to Colombia, I’ve been looking for information on where, when, how. I’m so lucky to meet Outlanders Colombia. such a trip requires a high level of expertise, very good communication with local authorities and locals, good planning and alternative plans, and most importantly a good communication between all the explorers…. And Outlanders Colombia did that perfectly well.
It was a “ones in a life iexperience” for all of us. First of all I want to thank very much to Edwin, on behalf of Outlanders Colombia and all the explorer friends for their friendship, help and all the translation. Otherwise, with my beginner level of Spanish, I would understand nothing.
The 8 day-trail map…
This breathtaking experience began on April 13 at 04:45 when we met in person at the meeting point in Bogota. Me, 2 Japanese explorer living in Bogota, 2 Americans living in Mexico, and 13 Colombians were about to step in Amazon Ecosystem. We had a whatsapp group and had discussed a lot about getting ready for the expedition and this part were also so exiting.
When we arrived in Villavicencio with a private minivan from Bogota, it was around 7.30. A few airlines fly between here and Bogota and several small cargo companies fly passengers and cargo to the many savannah and Amazon destinations. We flew with HK 2006 Aliansa to Jose del Guaviare. This plane one of the planes that used in 1940s.
We were going to fly to Caruru after leaving some cargo to San José del Guaviare airport but some minor problem with the cargo occured and we had to stay that night there, in a hotel.
As soon as the situation was understood, Edwin and our local guide Andres made a plan for the rest of the day. Just a short walk in the town, then lunch and then a tour of Laguna Negra. I’ve never been in such a nature before.
Caruru airport…We have great enthusiasm ✌️❤️
Every early in the next morning we went to airport again for our flight to Caruru. All of us very excited about the plane, the flight and the Amazons jungle below us.
After a nice landing, we gathered around the plane. The soldiers waiting for us gave detailed information about the risks in the region. They took our names and ID details and informed how to be in touch with them in case of emergency.
We had a short walk till the end of the main road. There was a maloka, wooden houses and shops, a school, a church. As it was 14th of April, Sunday, around 11 am the locals were returning from the church…
We will leave for Yurupari after lunch.
We had our first boat trip and arrived Yurupari.
The river has a U-shaped curve here and there is a strong flow due to the rocks at the other end. So this is the last stop. We came here around 4 pm and they drove us to the other end. The road is about 2 km. We will stay here at night and in the morning will continue with a boat at this end.
The other end
This is the first night we will sleep in a maloka, in a hammock. So we learned how to tie a hammock. By the way, it was getting darker because of the grey clouds. But we were determined to swim in the river. It was wonderful to swim in the river while raining… After a while, of course, we were cold. We changed quickly, we were ready for dinner.
Our dinner was fish soup with spinach like vegetable and manivaras, and casabe (kind of side meal made with yuca) with manivaras, toasted. Manivaras are big ants and it is their traditional food. I had to take out the ants to eat the soup.
Bellavista del Tuy
Our 3rd day started early in the next morning to go Bellavista del Tuy… We met beautiful and shy Tuy people. We took lots of photos while our lunch was being prepared.
Andres gave us information about hiking and introduced region snakes…
Photograph: Cristian Galvis Galindo
This village is the starting point of our 19 km hiking trail. We met our helpers who agreed to carry our bags. They will carry bags and food, and they will guide us during the walk and cook our meals.
In the afternoon we walked about 5 km and had to stop for camping before it is dark and it was such a good timing, because I was feeling tired. We all needed to cool off. When we learned from our guide that it was ok to get in, we immediately jumped into the water.
And dinner time…
Today we have all day walking. We’re walking in plastic boots, and my boot has stretched a little, it’s getting bigger for me, and walking is getting harder. I think 2 pairs of thick socks won’t work.
It was tiring but a good walk. Sometimes it rained, sometimes it stopped. We jumped over puddles, fell into the water from time to time, and cooled off … Amazon trees, mushrooms, butterflies around us. And this little snake.
In the evening we reached Cananarí. I was very tired. My feet hurt because I have many blisters. A friend was very helpful about the treatment, he drained the water, applied antibiotic cream and taped.
And early in the morning, we’re ready to leave. The villagers said goodbye…
We stopped in Altamira for lunch. It started raining the moment we arrived. We should have left but it was very strong. We waited a bit and watched the children play with the rain.
It heavily rained all the way to Morrocco. We arrived in the dark. We are all experienced enough now, so we tied the hammocks quickly. After dinner I had my treatment to my feet then slept. I was very tired.
We woke up to this beauty in the morning. In the morning, the program is to climb up about 4 hours to the ‘Ventana del Mundo’ (the window of the world). I’m so tired I couldn’t take this climb. I rested in the village. And all my clothes were dirty and wet. I washed them in the lake, dried them in the sun. I took a bath in the lake also.
My friends returned at noon and after lunch we left for Pacoa.
Pacoa (Buenos Aires)
We had great time in the quite river Canararí… It was warm, bright, soft. It was great… We arrived the village under the afternoon sun.
Photograph: Cristian Galvis Galindo
This is the village with the highest population. The children and youngers at all ages come from the surrounding villages for school and stay until the break. There are dormitories and classes.
We said goodbye to the village early in the morning…
The journey is to Jirijirimo …. Jirijirimo, the bed of the anaconda … Apaporis flows so calmly, so calmly that you won’t even think that you are so close that powerful stream of Jirijirimo. The tip is the haze-like image of the water droplets.
Very impressive .. very powerful … Nature 🙏
The return path is calm, serene, light as a bird’s feather …
Photograph: Cristian Galvis Galindo
Photograph: Ana Tamayo
This place is totally different …
This is the village with the highest population and technology, with electricity, siphon closet, faucet sink, and classrooms and television in maloka built with concrete instead of palm. We’re here on our last night. All batteries are charged. We tied the hammocks to the window bars. We waited for the children to finish watching the movie …
Day 8 – Return
An amazing trip …
Surprise for the last day. We are not returning with HK2006. Small planes of 3 and 5 people will take us to Villavicencio. As the flights are so small, we can fly as long as the weather permits. If there is a problem, the planes will land the nearest airport. I am in a group of 5 people. I don’t know how they determined, our flight is the first one.
We are ready. The load capacity of our airplane was relatively less, it took 5 people but it took only 3 backpacks. The rest will come with other planes.
We left at 8.50. The fog is slowly disappearing … I say goodbye to Amazon for now 🛶 Next is Amazon Ecuador Cuyabeno ✌️😎
April 20, 2019✌️😎