Feeling hot hot hot

Trip Start Jun 06, 2006
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of Bolivia  ,
Saturday, August 26, 2006

being the tight arses we are we decided to brave the bus to rurrenabaque against all advise of everyone we met...... and despite the fact that it went down the death road..... ok so we thought, we have done it before, its only a couple of hours of fear, but boy were we wrong.... the entire 20 hrs (overnight and in the dark) was pretty much on cliff edge, with several nasty reminders how dangerous the road is all the way.... many bus and truck shells could be seen at the bottom of the cliff. for the first little while near la paz there were volunteers who stood at the most dangerous corners and signalled when it was safe to go, but pretty soon we were on our own...... and this seemed to be when the traffic picked up as well- rush hour on the death road. and when we got a flat tire and so became behind time, this trip definately became the most hairasing yet with the maniac driver in a hurry and overtaking truck after truck at high speed. we were also stopped a couple of times in the middle of the night at villages who had organized blockades for political reasons (something to do with not being given enough fuel by the the government). Anyway, needles to say we arrived alive.... and quickly went to purchase plane tix for the return trip (although we were told by some fellow aussies that the plane company we were flying with is in the australian travel warning).

at almost sea level and on the edge of the amazon rainforest rurre was hot hot hot, not to mention the humidity..... we found a beautiful hostel to stay at which was right on the river and featured a back portch full of hammocks- perfect!!

we went on the three day tour to the jungle first, which involved a three hr boat trip down the rio beni. the jungle was absolutely spectacular, we went for several walks with our guide jimmi who told us all about the plants and animals in the area. in particular telling us of the many medicinal plants. we saw wild boars and several monkeys by day and were lucky enough to spot an ocelot at night (as well as some giant rat thing). we also walked to a viewpoit were you could see the parrots flying over the jungle, and had an unlucky few hours fishing where our only success was seeing a beautiful sunset.

next was the three day pampas tour (wet lands). there were so many animals here it was amazing. as we were cruising down the river in our motorized canoo we saw aligators, caimen, turtles, some big creature that i forgot the name of that looks like a cross between a wombat and a beaver, pink river dolphins, monkeys and way too many birds to remember. the tour included a night boat ride in which our guide caught an aligator and turtle to show us (naughty naught guide), a walk through the wetlands to find anacondas..... where matias was bitten by a small anaconda (lucky these guys squeeze to kill and are not poisonous and do not have big teeth), met pedro the friendly aligator who came to our guide for a feed and enjoyed a scratch on the nose so much that he would close his eyes and went piranha fishing.
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