An unforgettable journey through the bowels of the Amazon
Ever since she was in the fifth year, she knew that one day she would be a backpacker. The idea of grabbing a bag and walking around the world fascinates me!!
Today I deeply believe that life fulfills what you ask from your heart. In recent years I have known destinations that I never thought I would know so soon: Angel Falls, Catatumbo Lightning, Roraima, Kavak and Amazonas.
I can hardly believe it, but yes, I was there, submerged in the Amazon rainforest for nine
Days, feeling small before so much immensity. Amazonas is pure magic. I will tell you about my experience so that you are encouraged to know this destination.
¡Pass me a wire because I don't have an ass anymore! (exclaimed the subtle traveling madwoman) Day 1 was an endless journey. At 6:00 am we meet at the agreed point. We leave from Las Mercedes, Caracas in the direction of Puerto Ayacucho Amazonas State. It is more than 12 hours by car.
Emma didn't want to drive, so we went in the car of one of the tour guides. the first stop was near Carabobo, we stopped for breakfast. Arriving in Apure, we stopped at a restaurant next to the road that sold meat on the stick.
We had lunch there, the food was delicious. we still had a long way to go!!
At about 5:00 pm, a little more or less, we arrived at the port where we would take the barge. A deluge began to fall.
Already exhausted from being seated so much, we left the car in line and got off to wait in a kind of rather modest bodeguita. We came a little tight in the car and we were already tired ... But the excitement kept us happy.
On the barge.
The cars began to move. We returned to the vehicle, we all paid the position in cash and we were able to get on the barge to cross the Orinoco river. We come to amazonas!!
Puerto Ayacucho Highway.
Fun fact: This is the southernmost highway in Venezuela.
Driving down a very long road with giant stones on each side is
These stones that we saw along the road are the oldest in the world. They were formed when the Pangean continent was just being born. I'm not really an expert, but our guide explained to us in detail.
We spend the night at an inn in Puerto Ayacucho. On day 2 we drove to Puerto Samariapo (I can't believe I remember the names) here ends the paved road further south in Venezuela.
Once there, we left the cars at the house of an acquaintance where they would stay for the next few days while we ventured into the jungle.
After several verifications by the National Guard, we took the bongo, a boat that would take us to our final stop for the day, the Boca de Autana camp.
In the bongo, it was raining.
They were 6 hours sailing against the current on the river. Upon arrival we had our first encounter with the paramilitaries. Yes, the entire area is taken over by the Colombian paramilitaries. What are they doing? Illegal mining, gasoline and drug trafficking.
We stayed in a Piaroa community. At first they did not want to receive us because they had a meeting with the paracos, but they ended up accepting us.
Our dinner, payara fish.
We saw how people live so far from civilization. We ate as they usually do: river fish, in this case payara, and gallo's head (a very strange salad). We sleep in hammocks under a hut. Everything on this trip was a surprise, it was trying new things, it was taking risks.
Hammocks with mosquito nets, boca de autana campsite.
Day 3 started very early. This is how you sleep in the boca de autana camp, with a hammock and mosquito net.
This was my comfort zone, I was afraid to get out of it and more in the early morning where the trees look like people. I had to leave, my bladder always challenges me, but I'm still alive hahahaha.
FLYERS / COPOAZÚ
Another curious fact: the Piaroa are scared to walk at night through the forests because giant spiders can kill them.
To them, those giant spiders are banshees, luring them to
Bring them to your plane / dimension.
After breakfast we got on the flying boat, a small and fast boat. Our next stop is Caño Manteco.
On the way we tried the copoazú (I don't know exactly how it is written). It is shaped like a coconut and tastes like passion fruit and soursop, but apparently it is a cocoa from the Amazon. The river became narrower and narrower.
In various parts of the river we had to go under fallen logs and on one occasion we chopped a giant log that prevented us from passing, we arrived at Caño Manteco! And the adventure continues..
We go into the jungle. It was around 2:40 hours walking totally at the mercy of nature.
It is no surprise to see snakes, spiders, and even jaguars. I was just thinking: please don't let a snake appear!!
The path was not marked, we had no way of knowing where we were, how far to go or if we were going to the right place. The group was large and was led by a Piaroa guide, each one going at their own pace. We stopped for just a few minutes to record the experience and we got lost!!
I already imagined hunting my own food and building a shelter in the middle of nowhere, we were afraid. We started blowing a whistle that we had in our bag, but the rain made it seem like a whisper of the wind. I increase the fear.
15 minutes later, and by the work and grace of the holy spirit, we got a part of the group who were shouting the names of two other people ... Also missing.
Luckily, minutes later we were all together. With this I do not want to scare you, but it is good that you know that it is easy to get lost among the giant trees and the uneven ground.
Tip: Always try to go as close to the guide as possible and have a good whistle with you.
Rivers that we had to cross
The walk was not complicated, but due to the lack of tourists it was difficult to know where to take the next step.
On the other hand, the rain increased the flow of the streams. They could no longer be crossed so we improvised bridges with fallen trunks and we all helped each other to pass.
Makeshift bridge / the fox waterfall
We crossed the last river and arrived at the fox camp. Here we spend the night. This camp has a beautiful jump with the same name.
Despite the setbacks, it was a good day. Day 4 was one of the most anticipated. At last we are going to reach the leopoldo lake, known to the Piaroas as the paraka-wachoi.
The nights in the fox camp are very humid and hot, but here you can only sleep in a tent. Now add the variable of rain, it was already 20 hours between drizzles and sticks of water.
We didn't get wet, but our teammates weren't as lucky. Most of them were soaked. The rain subsided and we began our walk of approximately 2 hours.
The climb was much steeper, to some extent vertical.
View of the autana
After about 5 min walking I turn around and see the clear autana from a unique perspective. Boy I screamed with excitement. Best of all, with each step we took, the sun was rising stronger.
The road made us fast, maybe it was the view, maybe the spirit we had. We were already a few steps from the viewpoint and the excitement did not fit in our body.
5 more steps and we had in front of us a panoramic view of the lake. This lake is very controversial because of its origin, its shape and even its location.
Our guide explained all the theories in detail, stealing mysticism but filling us with knowledge.
However, it is a magical lake and I am sure of it. The energy you feel is my god! How do I put it into words ... It's magic. A silence full of murmurs, a peace with movements, a reality that seems like a dream..
I went down to get into its waters. I needed to submerge my body, to renew myself. I knew that something would change in me, right after entering and swimming in the paraka-wachoi.
That's how it went. I dropped a weight, I don't know exactly which one but I felt like my body could float easily. I was at peace and grateful to everything around me.
I was even grateful for having been born in the current situation in Venezuela, which would have seemed crazy to anyone.
The day became more serene, there was no longer rain, only a radiant sun. We go down
Back to camp. We bathe and settle everything.
We close with a double rainbow over us. Seeing this in the middle of the jungle is the most beautiful sign that God / destiny or whatever you want to call it can give you.
It was an Amazon thanking the visit, it was a mother saying goodbye (I'll explain this later), it was our positive energy. I cried, I admit it. It was totally unavoidable. We had lunch and dinner a little bad, but we felt so full that we did not care much.
On the 5th we woke up with the first rays of light. I told emma to pack up everything at thunder speed so that we could go up to the lookout and take one last look at Autana from there.
I was convinced that it would be clear. We didn't tell anyone, we kept that moment for both of us. I was the guide, I saw the footsteps of the previous day and the almost invisible hairs on the stones that help you know which way is.
We arrived and we had the best view of the whole trip ... Well, so far it was one of the best.
We went down from the viewpoint, grabbed our bags and started the walk. By now the whole group had gone out to Caño Manteco and we were barely crossing the river. They helped us and this time it was easier. We were going very fast, submerged in the jungle again.
I clearly remember how cobwebs felt against my skin and my looping thought of please don't cross any snakes.”.
It only took us 2:00 hours to finish the entire tour. We waited a while and when the whole group was reunited, we left.
I was dying to go to the seguera viewpoint, but our guide told us that we did not have so much gasoline that it was not very safe. When we got to the river autana they gave us the news that we would go, I was happy!liz!
Wichuj, uripika and wahari kuawai.
We started sailing with the row of tepuis on our back. We got off at the Piaroa camp and took the minutes to take photos and videos of the wahari kuawai, uripika and wichuj.
Time flew by. I still feel like it wasn't enough. I wanted to continue there contemplating, but we were running late.
We returned to the piaroa community of boca de autana. We ate, we spent the night and the next day we had the bongo again. Now we were going with the current and instead of 6 hours it was about 4:30. I appreciated it.
I also discovered why they call the ball stone ball. At first glance it does not look round, in fact it is half of a sphere, but the reflection of the water completes it.
Little by little, this wonderful journey was ending. I looked at everything with the desire to never erase it from my mind, to remember each day accurately.
I left a little of myself and brought a little magic.
Upon arrival they gave us the bad news that the mother of one of the guides had passed away. He died the afternoon we saw the beautiful rainbow. I'm sure you were saying goodbye to your son.
If you have never considered doing this trip, I hope that my story will motivate you. It has been one of the best experiences I have had in my beautiful country, Venezuela.
And finally, my advice is, get the best out of every trip. This time we got lost once and ate badly several times ... But when you put the transcendental nature of the adventure into perspective, those details lose strength.
However, later on we will make a video of everything that you cannot miss if you decide to take a camping trip, so watch out for super important tips.
Thanks for reading this far, we love you very much.