Off with Danielle
Skipper and First Mate Millard (Big Bear and Pepe)
Fri 9 Oct 2009 22:39
Off for the afternoon with Danielle
One of our "local" falls as we began to refer to them, opposite camp
After our arrival, welcome, room allocation, lunch and a quick siesta. Danielle our guide asked if we would like to go on a local adventure, to have a dip at the beach, walk under a falls, over a falls and back. Up we all jumped. We walked down to our local falls, turned left and entered the woods. Our path was a gentle rise for about half an hour. Then we steeply went down to a beautiful beach.
The group, Playita Beach and looking toward The falls we were to walk under
We left the beach with Danielle telling us about the area. We saw the sign leading to the falls, wended our way along the path. Clothes off, cameras in bin bags.
Needless to say the beauty helped as I braved the cold water shower. I had no choice by this point, so I focused on Bear and went for it along the slippery track
Danielle said she had never seen so little water falling over, I was pleased actually. We couldn't hear anything for the roar of the water
Playita Beach seen from our vantage point from the other side of Salto El Sapo Falls - Frog Falls
We carried on through woods and saw this private hidey-hole that was the 'thinking' place of Thomas Bernal (the man who founded our base camp). Then we were up above the falls enjoying the view.
The colours up here were astounding.
The view stunning
The panorama unique with Tepuy in the background
We are now in the Canaima National Park which is a 30,000 km² park in south-eastern Venezuela that borders Brazil and Guyana. It is located in the state of Bolivar, and roughly occupies the same area as the Gran Sabana region. The park was established on the 12th of June 1962. It is the second largest park in the country, after Parima-Tapirapeco and is the size of Belgium or Maryland. It became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1994 because of the tepuis (table-top mountains) that are characteristic of this area. A tepui (or tepuy) (pronounced tip-we) is a table-top mountain (mesa) found only in the Guiana Highlands of South America, especially in Venezuela. The word tepui means "house of the gods" in the native tongue of the Pemon, the indigenous people who inhabit the Gran Sabana. Tepuis tend to be found as isolated entities rather than in connected ranges, which makes them the host of a unique array of endemic plant and animal species. Tomorrow we seek Auyantepui the source of Angel Falls, the world's tallest waterfall.
Despite getting soaked under the falls, we were completely dry crossing over the top. As we wandered back I couldn't resist watching these leafcutters on the trot, their luggage made them look like green sails
By the time we passed our local, Salto Hacha - Axe Falls the light was perfect for this richly coloured shot
Then it was back to base camp, shower, supper, our first tutorial playing Mexican Train Dominoes (with up to twelve's on each - instead of sixes - so good we bought a set later on) and an early night as tomorrow it's off via canoe to the Angel Falls - cannot wait. This evening at supper another title was given - not by us. It was noted the many times Anne and Alan disappeared together to their "round pink house" when their room mates Pat and Mike were still with the group. Tittle Tattle abounded and the result ended up as Alan taking the title Safety Executive Manager - shortened to SEX. I'll make no comment.
ALL IN ALL AN AMAZING AFTERNOON