Yanalpa Trail, Supay Creek, San Jose

Sep 08, 2018 - Delfin II

Our week on board Delfin II exploring the Upper Amazon has almost come to an end; today is the last full-day of our expedition, but even today, we got to be amazed by the wildlife encounters we just had!

We started our day exploring an area that is hardly visited for at least half of the year. The main reason is because it doesn’t exist during that time, due the water levels of the river. Yanalpa is one of the many locations in the Amazon where the river fluctuation covers the entire plain, leaving nothing but a “sea” of trees gasping for survival!

Taking advantage of the low water levels at this time of the year, we decided to try one more hike in the forest before our trip ends. We carefully entered an area that has obviously been visited by locals, as branches and the main path had been reconstructed recently. It felt great to stretch our legs one more time in such healthy environment, and as we broke through the occasionally dense foliage, one could hear the typical (and now very familiar) sounds of the birds and animals that inhabit the forest. They remained hidden for the most of the walk, however we had some curious encounters with hawks that, even the local naturalist had never seen before. The largest butterflies of the Amazon also made an appearance and posed gracefully on branches for our photographing.  

The rest of the day was a combination of various activities both on board and off the ship. The skiff ride after breakfast was very productive, and we even had the opportunity to pass by a small settlement to observe the “pets” that kids were playing with during their well deserved break from school. A sight of a coati was probably the highlight of the morning, but the afternoon encounter of a large boa constrictor definitely surpassed the guests’ expectations, especially when our fearless local naturalist, Rudy, decided to give us a closer look of this amazing creature!

We also completed the day (and the week) by arriving to a lagoon where the famous giant water lilies were found. It seems that the definition of “giant” now has a different meaning in our lives; as we have spent the past seven days walking among giant snakes, giant river otters, giant monkey frogs and giant trees able to cover even the sun! We indeed feel small and humble after such a great experience in the land of giants!

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About the Author

Lucho Verdesoto

Expedition Leader

Born and raised in the tropical country of Ecuador, Lucho is a passionate naturalist that has been working for Lindblad Expeditions-National Geographic since 1998. With a marine biology background, he started as a naturalist in the Galápagos Islands in 1994. Since then, he has filled numerous roles with Lindblad-National Geographic, such as naturalist, undersea specialist and expedition leader in the Galápagos Islands, Costa Rica and Panama, and Baja California.

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