Into the Jungle Today!

Some travel….Early rise to take 5 minute boat ride to Indiana, where we checked out farmers market and food booths for those stopping here to eat while traveling on the river, then 20 minute ride in motorkar (3-wheeled Honda motorcycle front wheel and seat for 2 people on the back 2 wheels), and finally a 45 minute boat ride to Explornapo Lodge for breakfast. This lodge is deep in the Peruvian Amazon and most rustic with open air bedrooms, pit toilets down a path, and the lodge is away from everything … it is on a tributary 2 times away from the Amazon River! A capybara met us at the dock…they are strange looking animals.
Interesting to me, locals are in low hung boats (dug out from one piece of mohagany tree) and no one wears a life jacket! We do!
We hiked about an hour to ACTS (Amazon Conservatory for Tropical Studies) and climbed a tower to begin our rainforest canopy walk! Highest platform of the 16 platforms was 117 feet in the air. It is the longest treetop walkway in the world. The guide pointed out 12 more birds, thus our total has reached 70 birds in 3 days! The walkways had a bit of a swing to them, but not a problem, and very safe. I loved it up there! My clothing was drenched in sweat…truly wet! Bugs were not at all a problem, yet I do not know where I got the bite above my right eyebrow! (Looking forward to low humidity!)
Peru is not chopping, or clear-cutting, their trees as often heard about Brazil. Besides the Yagua's, the other traditional villages comprise of "Indians" deep in the jungle, according to our guide.
Back at Napo Lodge, we had lunch and then to ReNuPeRu, an ethnobotanist garden where 2 shamans from different villages presented information on how to use various plants for medicine. The one shaman is teaching his daughter, and he explained he started learning from his father and grandfather at age 14. The last part of his training with a master shaman takes 5-6 months and involves a hallucinogenic drink one time per week. The other shaman is from a different village, Spanish is their common language, and he held a ceremony with the group to take away negativity. I asked if pharmaceutical people have visited. Yes, they were given similar info as we received, but they have no idea what those individuals did with their info.
We left and headed back in reverse of how we came to Explornapo Lodge. I saw the government's medical ship that stops at each village for a couple of hours. Plenty of small boats on the water and then we arrived at our luxury accommodation!
No night walk tonight, although we did take one last night and saw big frogs, and tree frogs, along with caiman, bats, owls, fireflies and a porcupine high up in a tree. That night walk was after a high school dance performance, but tonight we relax and will be up for 6am bird walk. Although we have had rain on us, it seems to come at the appropriate time, such as when we are eating or sleeping!
Thanks to Peter Stonewall Jensen who did his Peace Corp work with a Peruvian archeologist and then wanted to visit the Amazon River. He then decided others should visit it too, and made arrangements for the construction of the Explorama Lodges at 3 different locations of varying levels of comfort! Peter died in 2010.

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