August 2002 - big trip - diary - venezuela - august 2002


Rainbow at the bottom, click for more

Spoiling the view...

...of Chinak Meru

Tuesday 13 - Wednesday 14 August

In the morning we returned to Aponwao (or Chinak Meru in Pemon) determined to get a trip to the falls for the right price. This turned out to be easy as luckily there was tour group just setting off and so we joined them. A featureless boat trip down river and a 10 minute stroll brought us to the spot where the river plunges 110 metres off a cliff, the highest of the Grand Sabana falls and a great sight. A couple of hours passed quickly, walking between the pozos and exploring the area, entertaining ourselves by trying to find an insect to feed to the plants and chuckling at the Oriental approach to wildlife interaction. Although there was no point in dressing up like a spaceman here during the day, early evening in most parts of the Sabana is a different story. The puri-puris come out until about an hour after sundown and long sleeve shirts and hats are essential and still they buzz around your eyes like crazy. Finding a windy campsite is the best way of avoiding them.

Insect eating plants

Could only be Japanese tourists!

Track erosion

An hour of slaloming the landy down the sandy track then crossing a shallow river in a steep ravine led us to the 75 metre Toron cascading falls. There was time for the customary natural bath before attending to the handbrake which had been jamming on. Dismantling the handbrake drum revealed a jungle-induced unlubricated muddy mess, which T enjoyed overhauling.

Toron Meru

Easy but fun offroading...

...even a river crossing

Salto Kaui...

...with red rocks...

...and water

Wednesday morning we retraced our tracks back to the paved main road, soon arriving at the pleasant Kaui Falls running over rich red jasper rocks. Returning to the landy we found that the rear tyre was hissing merrily away for the first puncture of the trip.

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