Amazon Jungle Trek from Banos Ecuador
- Traveling to Ecuador? What you need to know
- What to Pack for An Ecuador Trip
- Getting from the Quito Airport to Quito City Center
- Traveling from Quito to Banos, Ecuador
- Top 8 Things to do in Banos, Ecuador
- Bike Ride From Banos to Puyo and the Devil’s Cauldron Waterfall
- Hike from Banos to Casa del Arbol and the Swing of Death
- Amazon Jungle Trek, First Day
- Amazon Jungle Trek, Second Day
- How to get from Quito to Mitad del Mundo – “The Center of the World”
You can also check out our trip to Peru and Machu Picchu.
At about 3 a.m. a rooster woke me. From that point on, I dozed on and off until it got light. How did I know when it was light? Because part of an entire wall of our hut was open.
Breakfast was not until 8:30 so I decided to go out and take pictures of our village, since it was too dark last night to get good pictures on the first day.
At about 8:15, a downpour began. Soon after, we heard voices, so we donned our rain ponhos and headed to the fire hut. When we arrived we saw the table decked out for breakfast. For a tablecloth there was a giant leaf. It felt like we were transported into A Bug’s Life.
Breakfast was eggs, homemade bread, queso and some fruit.
Jacqueline joined us for breakfast. Jaqueline is Pink Floyd’s pet monkey. Jacqueline and I shared an apple.
As breakfast was ending, thankfully the rain stopped. We went back to our cabin, and packed up for another hike. We were told we were going on a three hour hike to another waterfall. Brandon, I, Mathilde, Alfredo, Pink Floyd and Jacqueline the monkey headed out around 9:30. After about 15 minutes we arrived at the main road. At this point, standing in the middle of the road, we were asked what we wanted for lunch. I thought this was an odd time and place to ask that question. I said “no fish” as I didn’t want Alfredo to dive in the river again because of me.
Alfredo then went running down the road. Pink Floyd, who had never done this trail before, said Alfredo was going to put in our lunch order and that we were to start without him and he would catch us. He said we were to look for a small trail on the right after we saw a broom. So we started walking in the opposite direction of Alfredo. After a few minutes, Pink Floyd said he thought this was the trail. It didn’t look like much of a trail, just some tall grass pressed down a little. I looked around and asked where the broom was. He pointed to a culvert. I guess they call it a broom.
Pink Floyd headed toward the trail. I suggested we wait for Alfredo. He said we should start because Alfredo is fast and will catch us. Again I suggested we wait for Alfredo. He gave in and we waited. Soon Alfredo got there and started walking farther up the road. Thank goodness we waited for Alfredo.
Hiking through mud and slop
About 100 meters later we came to another similar path on the side of the road. Alfredo led the way. We immediately started climbing. The trail was steep and muddy. I slipped many times. Other times I was ankle deep in mud.
Because of the climb and the mud and the heat, we stopped a couple times – the first time was at what looked like a grapefruit tree. I was told it was a lemon tree. Alfredo then found a long stick and knocked down a lemon for me. It was huge – larger than a grapefruit.
The next time we stopped Pink Floyd said to me, “May I suggest that you look older than you really are? But not as old as me.” What the heck! What kind of question is that? How old do I look? I asked him and he said upper 30s. I then felt much better.
In August, giant ants fly out of their ant hills. Locals build fires around the ant hills and when the ants fly out, their wings burn off and the locals catch them and eat them as a treat. We came across one of these. It was about 20 feet by 15 feet.
We eventually reached the top of the hill and then started down the other side. It was treacherous going down. I kept slipping. Seeing this Alfredo showed me that I should land with my heels first. I figured he has done this a lot more than me. I started using his technique. I still slipped some, but not as much as before.
After about 20 minutes we came to a small stream and were told to take off our socks off so they didn’t get wet. I thought that was silly because the creek wasn’t deep at all. So I smugly walked into the creek and successfully crossed without getting wet.
Again we were told we should take our socks off.
We already crossed the stream. Why would we take our socks off now?
Alfredo pointed downstream instead of to the trail.
Oh! We are walking through the water.
I sat down, took off my socks, zipped off the legs of my hiking pants so they became shorts, and put my boots back on.
Pink Floyd said we would soon be walking in waist deep water, so if we wanted our pants to be dry we should take them off.
Good thing I was wearing spandex shorts underneath instead of regular underwear.
At least there was a picturesque waterfall as we started our upstream journey.
So here I was, walking down a stream in the jungle in Ecuador in my “underwear”.
Nope – No picture of that.
We walked through the stream for about 15 minutes and came to a stop. We were told to put our bags on some rocks and take off our boots because we had to swim the next section.
The swim wasn’t that far, maybe 10 meters until the stream narrowed briefly. On the other side
there was a long, slippery log that we had to traverse that led to a pool at the base of the waterfall.
I just swam upstream to a waterfall in the Ecuador jungle!
The place was magical, not only because of the beauty of our surroundings, but the knowledge of how we arrived here. We swam out to the waterfall. We climbed up on the rocks and stood under the waterfall. We got back in the water and stared at the sight before us. I didn’t want to leave.
Back to first day of Jungle Tour: Amazon Jungle Tour, First Day – Day 5