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For years I quit taking pictures and I had never planned on putting together a website like this one. This is a mishmash of everything I was able to save from my online storage after losing the backpack I had traveled with for 6 years straight, losing all my equipment recently on a return to Thailand after a Month-long train journey through Russia.
- South America
Theresa Gong and Jim Seaton were amazing companions during our month exploring the incredible diversity of Peru.
We venture by boat on a week-long journey from the island city of Iquitos into the amazon, took a road trip down the 500-mile coast between Lima and Arequipa, traveling through the worlds driest desert, the Atacama. We drove over a 14,200-foot mountain pass and saw the Valley of the Condors, and experienced carnival in Puno, high in the Andes at Lake Titicaca as well as trekking around the Inca enclave of Machu Picchu.
During our expedition down the White River in the Amazon, we found ourselves in a bit of a situation when I rescued a baby puma, which turned out to be a previously undocumented ‘Jaguarundi’ species and smuggled it into our hostel.
They take Carnival very seriously in South America, often preparing for months in advance. I have been to carnival two times in Brazil, yet the carnival in Puno took my breath away. The altitude is so high that they actually sell oxygen bottles in the small shops.
Puno and Lake Titicaca are at an altitude of 3,810 meters (12,500 feet) above sea level. A city on top of the world.
- Lake Titicaca
Lake Titicaca, straddling the border between Peru and Bolivia in the Andes Mountains, is one of South America’s largest lakes and the world’s highest navigable body of water and is said to be the birthplace of the Incas.
Floating villages on the lake constructed of thousands of reed rafts still exist but now are maintained for the visiting tourists.
- Puno Market
High in the Andes, the air is pure and thin. Puno is connected to isolated towns and villages by winding mountain roads and paths where centuries of tradition are still the foundation of modern life. It is truly a ‘place out of time’.
Villages from the surrounding area will often walk for days to sell their produce, cloth and handy crafts at the Puno market.
- Machu Picchu
Machu Picchu is an Incan citadel high in the Andes. Built-in the 15th century and later abandoned, it’s renowned for its sophisticated dry-stone walls that fuse huge blocks without the use of mortar, and intriguing buildings that lay on complex astronomical alignments.
I was spending a month in Peru with my die-hard travel companions and friends Jim and Theresa Seaton from Montana.
The Andes mountains are cone-shaped and reach up to 6,962 meters, (22,841 feet). The slopes are steep and the vegetation dense and virtually impassable.
- These are the stories coming soon
The Baby Puma and The Amazon
Ever explore deep into the Amazon Rain forest by boat, rescue a baby Puma from certain death, and then smuggle it into your hostel. Only to find out days later that it is really a very rare Jagarundy, and that there is no place to bring it where it can be cared for. The police have already been called by an angry veterinarian and, Theresa and Jim and I, find ourselves way in over our heads. And that’s when things begin to get really strange.
Spoiler Alert. The story ends at a new beginning when after an amazing series of events Rick Schwartz the president of the Nashville Zoo and I met with the Governor of the Province of Maynas and they worked out a long term partnership between the Nashville and Iquitos zoo. They are currently breeding the endangered Manatee in the lagoon there.