Message modified by board administrator 11/25/2011, 4:21 pm
Some of you might remember my story of a trip through the Puna region, NW Argentina, last year.
Well, we just came back from a 5-day trip to the NE tip of Argentina, Misiones province, amazonian jungle. We did a mix between very extreme and adventurous trip through the jungle (using GPS, radios, and all kinds of equipment like chainsaws, machetes, axes) and some humanitarian work, carrying 1.5 tons of clothes, food, medicines, and such, which we distributed among 4 aborigin schools and one Guarani village. It was a magnificent feeling to help the people there and we look forward to return; in the meantime, we will keep in touch and sending help to them.
I am from Buenos Aires, Argentina; the driving to and from the area where we started and finished our trip was 1500 miles. Previous to the trip, we had the corresponding shots for Yellow Fever, A Hepatitis, Tetanus, and carried a full bag of meds (plus, I am an MD).
The regional fauna includes bobcats, cougars, and a recovering population of jaguars, the third of the big cats in the world, size-wise, after the tiger and the african lion. Jaguars can get to 350 pounds and unlike their cousin, the puma, are not shy at all. Poisonous snakes include the coral snake, rattles, "yarará", etc. And the insects are huge. We carried a 25% DEET insect repellent and it was barely enough; we still got our fair share of stings....
As for the landscape, it is typical fain-forest jungle, with red dirt (because of iron sulfide) and over 80 inches of rain per year.
We were 6 people and vehicles: 1 Polaris 550 XP, 2 Can Am Outlander 800, 1 Cam Am CMX 800, 1 Can Am Renegade specially tuned for the trip, and an NP (Goes). This kind of trip does not allow many participants, being 5 to 8 the ideal number, IMHO. The plan included other 2 Polaris (a 550 and an 850) whose owners finally couldn't make it because of personal reasons.
We had to sort extreme difficulties and used our chainsaw to cut the way open through dead trees until it ran dull and could cut no more. And we had our share of night driving through the jungle which, I can tell you, requires quite some guts since you don't have a clue where the rain forest is taking you and you can hear all kinds of sounds. The average speed inside the rain forest was more or less like walking; we had to use the 4x4 in low gear a lot, and the temperature during the day was in the low 100's. All of the ATV's performed flawlessly; once again shows that top brands like Polaris and Can Am have might have style differencies, but they are all reliable even when pushed to extremes, and we are all a big, good family...:flowers1:
Overall, a magnificent, extremely hard and and soul-rewarding trip. Here are some photos; please feel free to ask any questions.
Getting ready to depart....
First school, in El Soberbio, Misiones
Guarani tribe and it's "Cacique" (Chief). Dropping some goodies and spending time with most isolated people you can find...only way to the "aldea" is on foot (35 miles), horse, or working your butt-off with an ATV. Poverty and needs at their extreme.
And then...the inextricable, dark jungle...
Ooops...bring the chainsaw!
Where the heck are we going? No tracks in front....no nothing...
Drained, dirty, and stung all around....:-)
Taking a much-needed break....
Hope you enjoy the photos and I have not been too long.
Again, anything you might want to ask, at your service.
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