April 12, 2013 § 1 Comment
Lucky number 13? I don’t know, but the thirteenth week of this year was filled with activity… it was Holy Week in the Christian Calendar, and in the Hindu calendar it also held the festival of Phagwah (or Holi).
I got many photos, mostly from the Church activities for my own satisfaction, but I’ll definitely share some.
On Phagwah day I usually don’t get many photos of people playing / celebrating Phagwah, as I tend to keep my camera safely away from the waters and powders that abound. Nearing the end of the day, I was sitting with my family on the seawall, and along came these young ladies fresh from playing, and I couldn’t resist snapping a shot, one even posed
Click on the image above to see it better in the Gallery!
April 5, 2013 § 6 Comments
The Journey Back.
On the way back from Orinduik, the journey usually takes a slightly different path, we bypass some places, particularly Monkey Mountain, and this cuts short the return trip significantly.
As we awoke at Kurukubaru, we noticed that since the previous evening we could feel a soft drizzle and this had not changed, it was then that we were told that it wasn’t really a drizzle, we were simply in a cloud
The view from so high up is so breath-taking, that it is hard to render that on camera, one direction looks very much like the other, but you can’t help but snap a few anyway
Be caught up with the main convoy at Kato and continued our journey onward, here are some more photos from the trail…
We stayed at Yarong Paru where I got in some more photos to show
I even got one at a village further on, I think it was Tiperu, when Frank and a few others took a break and sat aside the trail
At Karasabai the Safari was pretty much over, at this point the option was given to members to either head back to town or proceed to Lethem for the Annual Rodeo. We opted for town and overnighted at The Oasis at Annai
As we were crossing the Essequibo River at Kurupukari I noticed Jason washing down his tires from all the mud… presumably making room for more mud as we hit the trail on the other side
On the other side of the crossing we stopped for Lunch and I took a few moments to get in a couple of shots at the shop
If I ever make the trip again, I hope I get to spend more time at some of these villages. Click on the images to see them larger in the Gallery along with all the other select images from the Safari!
April 2, 2013 § 1 Comment
Frankincense: That’s the incense used at most Catholic churches when they are celebrating major feasts, it’s a smell that’s been familiar to me since early childhood, and one I always associate with the presence of the Bishop at a mass.
Last Palm Sunday (Passion Sunday), As I was avoiding the rain, and ducking under tents, I happened to stand right next to the altar server who was tending the Thurible with the coals and the incense, as the rain kept me cornered for the moment I took a few quick snaps
Click on the image to see it better in the Gallery
March 30, 2013 § 1 Comment
As we were behind schedule, I thought we would have left Paramakatoi extra early, but we started out close to 8am and headed for Kato.
At Kato we had a brief stop, some vehicles were attended to, and some thirst needs were also attended to
Our next stop would be at Kurukubaru, although I did not take many photos on the way into the village or even at the village, this one of a family at their home I liked.
From Kurukubaru, our next stop would be the destination of the entire Safari, Orinduik Falls, the route there proved to be unusually treacherous for the vehicles, it was on the way there and back to Kurukubaru that evening that the vehicle suffered the most damage Unfortunately, no photos, not a lot of stopping on that leg of the journey
Just to prove that the Destination was worth it, I’ve selected quite a few photos to show you of Orinduik.
Although we wanted to make it back to Kato that evening, we lost the main convoy in the rains up at Kurukubaru, and were advised by the villagers not to descend the mountain in the rain, so we spent the night at Kurukubaru, the highest village in Guyana.
There may be one more post in this series, but it will be sometime next week, the Easter Weekend is upon us
Please click on the photos to see them larger in the Gallery.
March 28, 2013 § 1 Comment
Monkey Mountain: We started the day as per normal, early
I even managed to get in a few snaps before departing, which is a lot more than I managed in 2009.
Our next stop would be in Tuseneng, below you can see some of the terrain that we traversed on the way there
At Tuseneng, I was fascinated by the “tools of the trade” that could be seen outside the huts / buildings around the village centre.
After Tuseneng we’d be headed towards Paramakatoi passing through Bamboo Creek on the way, this segment of the drive proved more challenging than originally expected as you can see from the photos below:
By the time we arrived at Paramakatoi it was nigh on twilight, and Frank sought permission for us to stay there for the nigh, even though our original destination for the day would have been Kato.
Click on the images to see them larger in the Gallery, especially the trail ones
March 26, 2013 § 3 Comments
We awoke on the third day of the Safari at Rukumotu, and after clearing up our campsite, we joined the convoy to start our day’s drive. Shortly after leaving the village we saw the reason that Frank declined to descend the mountain at night… a very rocky and difficult drive, with loose rocks that needed some steady nerves for Nikhil.
Once on the valley floor we made better time, but for some reason we lost sight of the convoy, some gentlemen on a tractor indicated a route we should follow, the trail seemed fine until we came to a fork, made deliberately because the older trail was badly damaged. Although the bypass included a steep ascent, Nikhil mastered it like a veteran.
Further along the trail, we cam to a widening in the trail that was mud from treeline to treeline and probably more than twenty-five feet across, at this point we were still alone having not caught site of the lead vehicles of the main convoy as yet. We were now two hours out from Rukumotu, not finding any path across that looked any better than another, we drove straight in…. and got stuck…
Although we tried extricating ourselves from the mud with the winch, we didn’t get very far, and decided to wait on more experienced travellers to assist us, surely the tail of the convoy would catch up. After what seemed like an eternity, but was more likely a half of an hour, we saw the entire convoy coming up behind us… somehow we had gotten ahead of the lead vehicles.
We can take some comfort in the fact that most of the other vehicles also got stuck coming through that patch… but we do hold the dubious distinction of being the first to get stuck… for the entire Safari.
Of course, Nikhil is also quite proud of being instrumental in hauling many of the others through, once we ourselves were on solid ground
From there to our next main stop at Yarong Paru (or Young Peru) it was uneventful (relatively); at Yarong Paru, we took a breather, and gave over some packages the convoy had brought along for the village, as well as made arrangements for re-fuelling… and I took some photographs too… lovely spot on the mountain to be…
I even did a Panorama.
After leaving Yarong Paru, we crossed the Ichilibar bridge, and as we drove along the river bank, we noticed the scene towards the river, we paused (very briefly) to get a few photos. Here’s one:
Our next stop would be at the village on Monkey Mountain, a hard drive, but I did manage to get in a few photos as we drove.
We arrived at Monkey Mountain with time to spare (compared to 2009 anyway), it was still daylight, as we prepared camp, and Naseem worked at our dinner, I managed to catch a nice shot of some children playing football not far from our benab.
Click on the photos to see them larger in the Gallery
March 25, 2013 § 1 Comment
When on Safari, we tend to want to get up early, not just to get ready, get breakfast, break camp etc, but to ensure that we get our ration of fuel for the day And that the convoy doesn’t leave us behind. I jest, they wouldn’t do that, would they?
We awoke early at Karasabai and broke camp, after the morning ablutions, breakfast and so forth, we then had some time for a few photos as we waited for the convoy to assemble
Our first full day in the mountain trails, and we even had a few stops where we could take more photographs
Just after a rather steep mountain pass, we stopped at a village called Karabaiko, where Eddy even got into doing some repairs.
We visited the village of Tipuru on the way. Tipuru has a nice little shop that has lovely indigenous food and drink for sale, like Cassava bread and “Fly”, a potato liquor.
Thence to our final stop for the day at Rukumotu (not our planned stop, but it was too late and too dangerous to proceed any farther.
At Rukumotu, they gave us permission to camp out on the grounds or in the school, we picked a nice hard spot outside the school, that ended up bending at least one of our tent pegs… we were definitely in the mountains, not soft Rupununi soil at all.
Click on the photos to see them in the Safari 2012 Gallery in the Collection.