Rocks, Rapids and Rainbows

So I'm back on the river, It's 9.26 on another glorious morning in southern Suriname. At the moment I'm sitting in one of the two peroc canoes that we have for this section of the journey. Jay and Max are in the other boat travelling parallel to me as we make our way down stream... it's a beautiful scene... I'm looking forward to a relaxing day ... floating down river, paddling at points, moving through small rapids, drifting with the current…

Today marks a turning point in this project... Whilst I slept... thousands of miles away... a young woman in Holland, called Merel read about the schoolchildren in Kwamala ... in response to the headmaster’s letter that we posted on the discussion board...she will be sending some supplies to help the children.... It's a wonderful feeling to think that our visit there has already had an affect... it really does work.... Thank You Merel.

For the next couple of days we will be travelling towards Dritibiki the home of Granman Gazon of the N'duka people. There are a few obstacles to overcome, more rapids and a three day trek through the jungle with Amerindian guides climbing Mt. Rosevelt. It’s not going to be easy... It’s 11.06

At the first rapids Jay and Max rowed the boats over the rocks while one of the guides and I walked through the forest, carrying with us the most important equipment. I don't know how it happened but after about ten minutes of scrambling through the bushes the guide casually turned around and announced that we where lost! We spent a while turning in circles, shouting for the others, looking at twigs and branches trying to find something resembling a path. Then, smashing the end of his machete into the buttress root of a nearby tree, he sent a thunderous drum beat through the forest.... within minutes the others appeared to lead us back to the safety of the boat and we where on are way.

Sometime later... we've just arrived at a rapid called Kodebakoe... perhaps its not going to be so relaxing after all....

The whole day has been spent getting past rapids - six in all. At each we had to unload the boats, trudge through the forest with the equipment, and drag the boats across the falls. It’s been exhausting...have a look at the video

The last obstacle was the most impressive, an angry mass of churning water... After unloading the boat and hauling the equipment over a small hill, Max decided to grab the Scubacam (waterproof camera) and jump into the boat to capture the moment on film. Jay and I watched with amazement from a nearby rock, as the driver powered towards the falls at full speed... It was really quite spectacular... launching themselves through the wash... the first boat actually took off before ploughing through the waves on the other side... Go Max!

As the day came to an end just to top it off... the heavens opened, releasing a tropical downpour soaking us through....rounding a bend in the river we saw a perfect dome shaped mountain rising out of the jungle...framed by a huge multi-coloured rainbow. It is called Tepu Top, a sacred mountain for the N'duka tribe. Apparently every year they travel up river in boats laden with offerings which they place at the foot of the mountain It must be an incredible ceremony... I wish I could see it!.

Tonight we are the guests of a traditional Wayana village on the banks of the river. I say village... six palm huts and one family... Its about as classic a scene as I could ever have dreamt of....a timeless and peaceful haven, crowned with a million bright stars......it’s 10.49 life is on fire, it’s time to retire.




... and Rainbows

LINKS - cardytours
LINKS - Environmental Links
LINKS - Rainforest Relief
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