2016 has just ended and we would like to share the feedback we received from Michael Stubley.
He begins his feedback as follows
"Departing from #ManuWildlifeCenter upriver I could slowly see the signs of modern life fade away, as we passed the confluence of the Madre de Dios and #Manu rivers the riverbanks soon cleared totally of human life and were only peppered with numerous herons, egrets and terns, and the large trunks of trees that had been felled and carried by the power of the water. Our boat trip was briefly suspended as we officially signed into the National Park at the Cocha Cashu Biological Station, the posters of Jaguars and Otters adorning the walls a hint of what was to come as we plunged deeper into the wild.
#ManuParkWildlifeCenter is hidden adjacent to the river. It is a surprising pocket of comfort nestled in thick jungle, after settling we headed briskly to the other side of the river, and after a 10 minute walk the trail opened up onto Salvador lake. The oxbow lake was a picture of tranquility, the canopy perfectly reflected on its surface as the evening sun singed the tree tops a golden green. We proceeded to take a catamarán onto the water and were rewarded almost instantly with a giant river otter sighting, the animal quietly retiring to its den for the night. Heading further across the lake the boat was brimming with anticipation as we scanned the darkened waters for the reflective eyes of a Caiman, the roars of rival groups of howler monkeys filling the air. After more than a few sightings we left the lake following the southern cross, one of the many constellations in the stunningly clear night sky. However darkness didn't hasten our trip back when we were able to spot numerous insects and spiders active during the night, this is not for the faint hearted!
Our second morning was spent at Otorongo Lake a short way downriver. Once again we docked on the riverbank, this time alongside fresh ocelot tracks and ventured into the forest, winding our way past a 400 year old Kapok tree, harbouring countless insect species in its huge branches. Reaching the lake we observed a male river otter swimming past us, and a number of neo-tropic cormorants fishing, their slender necks bobbing in and out of the water with varying success. The climb up the viewing tower was certainly worth the commanding view over the water especially when a troupe of woolly monkeys came to forage within 5 meters of us. For close to half an hour we watched them traverse the canopy, jumping from tree to tree with surprising ease, although a large thud meant there was one notable exception!
On our return to #Manu camp, and when passing officers for the Ministry of Culture we were reminded a important issue which is that #ManuNationalPark is designed to protect the indigenous culture as well as the wildlife; the park still contains non-contacted nomadic tribes, which the government works hard to preserve and protect.. After lunch we returned to Salvador lake for the afternoon. We weren't the only ones enjoying the sunshine, as we watched a group of seven otters frolicking in the water, unconcerned with the tourists gliding quietly past.
Our early departure the next morning was mired by heavy fog, which meant a slow journey back and a lot of work for the boat crew navigating past the partly sunken wood which would loom out of the fog at every turn. This turn of events hampered our chances at seeing a Jaguar, which are possible to see in the early hours sunning themselves on the riverbanks, but in an otherwise perfect trip, I had to have a reason to come back to this special place!"
If you enjoyed reading about Michael experience as volunteer and you feel like travel & experience new things, then do your share of volunteer work.
There is not a better experience than being a volunteer to preserve life: Hapinness will come to you and success will be yours when you choose to be part of the volunteer experience. All you will get is gratitude from the life you saved or the change you made in their lives