Pacaya River and Yanayacu Lake

May 25, 2018 - Delfin II


This morning the knock-knock on our doors came at 0700 and a half hour later we enjoyed a bountiful and delicious breakfast. We then boarded the 3 skiffs, with our eagle-eyed naturalists and skiff driver teams, for a day of adventure and exploration up the Pacaya River. We went into the heart of the Pacaya-Samiria National Reserve and visited a section of the river where few tourists have been. Our destination for a picnic lunch was the ranger station at PV2 – “Puesto de Vigilencia No. 2.” Here in the 90’s Peruvian President Fujimori built a fish camp to entertain important guests and to fish for the largest of all fresh water fish: the paiche. Paiche can reach 15 feet in length and may weigh over 400 lbs! It was evident that Fujimori choose the site of his camp well; when we arrived there, the park rangers were skinning, scaling and preparing a 300 lb. paiche!

On our way up river today we found myriad wildlife! We watched red howler monkeys leap through the treetops, monk sakis with their very puffy gray fur staring down at us, parrots and macaws flying in pairs across the river or perched high in the trees, 5 species of herons, huge jabiru storks and several of the very strange looking hoatzins, as we travelled upstream.

We had a lovely meal and soon afterwards began our trip back down-stream, stopping to see more sloths, blue and yellow macaws, hoatzins and howler monkeys. Many of us swam in the warm black waters of Yanayacu Lake, with the pink dolphins, and a cool beer. We reached the Delfin II, waiting for on the muddy Ucayali River tied to a strong tree, and took refreshing showers and downed some cooling drinks at the bar. Everyone agreed, it was a long day, and it was also an unusual and marvelous day!

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About the Author

Lynn Fowler

Expedition Leader

Born in Baltimore, Maryland, and one of seven children, Lynn grew up in various university towns where her father was a professor of physics. Lynn obtained her B.A. in biology from Earlham College in Richmond, Indiana, followed by a master’s degree in zoology from the University of Florida, which encompassed a study of marine turtles in Costa Rica. She arrived in Galápagos in 1978 and became one of the first female naturalist guides working for the Galápagos National Park.

About the Photographer

Linda Burback

Naturalist/Certified Photo Instructor

Born in Cape Cod, Massachusetts, Linda and her Air Force family moved extensively throughout the U.S. when she was a child. Linda continues to travel and explore a broader spectrum of the world as a naturalist with Lindblad Expeditions-National Geographic. Linda earned her B.Sc. in horticulture from the University of Arizona in 1985 and worked with this degree in the commercial cactus industry for sixteen years.

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