Highest waterfall in the world, the Angel Falls
Trip Start Sep 19, 2009
87Trip End May 19, 2010
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Yet another flight, but this time in a 5 seater plane, we headed south to Canaima. The views were fantastic. We had been told it was an hours flight, but an hour later we flew straight over a runway without stopping. A little confused, we carried on until the plane started getting very near to the trees below. Slightly worried what out pilot was up to (considering earlier he had been happily reading the paper while flying), we suddenly looped down and around, and got an amazing view of the Angel Falls. And we continued to loop around about 5 times, which in the end was about 4 times too many as we all felt very queasy on landing! However it turns out its not normal to travel the further distance to see the falls, so we were incredibly lucky.
We met out guide, Freddy, and headed to the hostel. We had booked this tour and our next with one very efficient German run tour company, backpacker tours (and kamadac) - however Freddy then explained that we would never be back from the falls on the Sunday to make our flight on to Santa Elena. All a bit worrying, but after a quick call to the agency, it was all changed to the Monday. Too easy (or so we thought!). Before lunch, we headed to the beach by the lagoon
That afternoon, we headed to see the falls more locally around Canaima, first by boat and then by foot to access behind the falls - where we got soaking wet! It was an amazing sensation to be standing under the waterfalls (as well as terrifying that you may slip!) – luckily I had a waterproof bag for the camera! With the sun shining on the falls, rainbows were created over the falling water, making for some truly perfect pictures.
The following day we headed up the river on a narrow wooden boat with Freddy, 3 more crew and 6 of us, 2 Venezuelan brothers, and 2 other guys from USA and NZ. Once again I was the only girl on the tour! However it had its advantages... being dry season, the water level in the river was pretty low in places, and it took some skill by the driver and also the poor guy at the front (with an oar or himself thrown into the water) to get us out of some situations. In others, it was everyone in the water to push, bar me being a girl (and somehow Ben as well…looking after me being his excuse!!!). The journey took about 4.5 hours upstream, it was very pretty and interesting watching the driver meander and avoid rocks or rapids, but I was a little bored after 3.5 hours and with a very numb bum
As we had been lucky enough (and a little spoilt) by seeing the falls already by plane, the view was not so exciting for us. Also, being height of the dry season, there was not much water. Therefore, it is hard to judge just how high the waterfall is. On the other hand, coming in wet season you would not even be able to stand at the viewpoint without getting soaked - so ups and downs to it all! Ben and I started walking down early knowing at our pace we would be overtaken by these speedy guys. Also, it was getting dark by now and a little bit eerie in the jungle! Being that bit slower, we were lucky enough to spot what turned out to be a type of ant eater, it was about the size of a cat, black with a bushy tail but a long nose, very cool!
After a delicious fire roasted chicken it was back to hammocks for the night. Luckily we had mossie nets this time, especially as we had seen some rather large spiders nearby! Early morning wake up call, and off we were back down the stream - much easier this time, as we were going the direction of the current, but being earlier and a much cloudier day it was a much colder journey, with more reluctance to get wet! Back in Canaima, and we had the afternoon to relax on the beach. That was until a boy came running up asking if we were "Ben-hameen and Cly-rey"….saying our flight was waiting for us! There was a slight mild panic (from me) and laughter (from Ben), as we rushed to the hostel to try and pack… but then the boy came running back saying no don’t worry it was someone else!!! A final meal in the little restaurant with our latest friends, and it was off for an early night to prepare for our next test of physical endurance…