Ecuador Series 2 out of 4

Wow! I definitely imagined having more than enough time to blog about all my adventures, however that has not been the case. In fact, my schedule has been pure chaos, and while the trips are full of fun facts and tons of memories, the classes that accompany the fun have lived up to the “entire semester in two weeks intensive class” criteria. Despite the stress, these classes have been so eye-opening and have brought about a wealth of information I will carry around with me for a lifetime! Now to backtrack…

The next incredible adventure was to the Amazon rainforest! Tiputini to be exact. Our adventures began on June 17th with an hour long flight to Coca, 4 total hours in a canoe and another hour driving. Despite the exhaustion, the excitement to explore was very prevalent for each and every one of us. We had the opportunity to stay at the Tiputini Biodiversity Research Station as researchers in the making with several other researchers. Most of our days consisted of adventures, hiking, learning, and soaking up all the greatness that the Amazon rainforest has to offer.

Each day brought about a new found excitement for learning. Given the amount of activities within a five day period, I am just going to go over some of the main highlights from the trip and share the beautiful pictures I took!

As mentioned above, traveling to Tiputini was a day-long adventure, but a beautiful one at that! My friend took the sleeping picture of the two other researchers and I and it cracks me up everytime I see it. TALK ABOUT EXHAUSTED!

Our very first activity at Tiputini was of course, swimming in the Tiputini river, aka the Amazon river! The next day, the cooks were fishing for piranhas in the exact same place………unsettling to say the least.

From suction-footed bats, to red howler monkeys, to millipedes, to piranhas, the variety and insane amount of species I got to encounter right in front of my eyes is mind-blowing! The Amazon rainforest is such a beautiful, special, and diverse place that needs to be conserved with all effort and means possible! The bug bites, the cold showers, the constant mud, the clothes that NEVER dry, the big spiders in our room and dropping my phone off a 150ft. tower above the canopy of trees was ALL worth it given the incredible memories that accompanied it all.

My absolute FAVORITE picture from this trip. Have you ever had one of those experiences where in that very moment, tears flood your eyes because you are trying to soak in all of the greatness at once? I was experiencing that very thing in the moment I was taking this picture.

Words could not fully express my amazement and gratitude for our earth and all the incredible things it holds. As stated in the first part of my series, my wanderlust is and has been completely triggered this entire trip.

The things learned and encountered have completely changed the way I look at the world. A quote mentioned by my professor really struck home for me.

“In the end we will conserve only what we love; we will love on what we understand’ and we will understand only what we are taught.”

Baba Dioum, 1968

I am so incredibly grateful for the experiences of a lifetime on this trip. Grateful does not begin to come close to expressing gratitude; for the earth, for the people rooting me on in the states and following each and every adventure, and especially for the people who made it possible for me to experience all of this, my grandparents. ♥

Two more posts in the series to come! I hope you enjoyed this chaotic post, keep your eyes peeled for the next one!

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Till next time ツ

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