This photo-blog is designed to work either as a standard blog with images or - by clicking any image - a photo-album. To see an image in full resolution click to the left or right of an image in blog mode. The images were generated from video to give the best possible view of the journey.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Villa Tunari to Montero

Sunrise over the river at Villa Tunari

We camped for the night at Villa Tunari which borders on the Parque National Isboro Secure and has a conservation reserve where you can walk and sample the jungle at the foot of the Andes.

The river at Villa Tunari

We took a walk in the morning through the conservation reserve up to the summit of a hill where there is an overview of the river and surrounding area.

Panorama of Villa Tunari from the reserve

Vertical panorama of a tall tree in the reserve

Sounds of the jungle in the conservation reserve (mp3).

The night before, the town was full of truck-trailier units full of tropical hardwood logs. Teresa said they were all waiting for the night so they could run the forestry checkpoint further up the road in the cover of darkness.

Panorama of the logging queue (click to the left of the image to enlarge)

Scenes from the camp site the night before

A firefly glowing on my hand and then making to fly off

The extreme variety of moths that gathered around the illuminated toilet block at night

Scenes from the camp site in the morning

Panorama of the central village square

More logging trucks in the morning

This one seems to have the red sap characteristic of hallucinogenic Virola species

Heading on we cross several river flood planes.

We stop briefly in Yapacani, a town notorious for its association with the coca which is produced in the forested areas to the north in Chapare.

Bags of coca leaf and a woman street seller

This chequered history runs from the 1980s when Yapacani was sprayed with 24D through to 2012 when there were murders committed over political conflicts between the left-leaning government of Evo Morales and large land owners from Santa Cruz, with the involvement of coca traffickers.

Fatal clashes in conflict over Mayor of Yapacani Jan 2012

Yapacani, El Chore, Amboro Park, coca and three dead people Jan 2012

Bolivia Says Coca Yes, Cocaine No 2007

Rise in food prices has Bolivian coca farmers planting rice 2008

Panorama of further convoys of logging trucks

A logging stockpile beside the road

Panorama of the logging stockpile

Scorched earth

Panorama of a clear felled plot beside the road

The guys clearing the ashes threatening us with machetes. 
Although this is a small scale plot it illustrates the mentality.

Another burned out plot

All along the road is a controversial gas pipeline which has been the subject of political divisions.

Two large-scale agribusiness plots

Burning and clearing for pasture

Adam and Teresa

Panoramas of a blue cemetery

Panoramas of a second roadside cemetery

Central Montero

Panorama of central Montero

The setting sun hung heavy red with smoke from the bush fires to the north

Further scenes from Montero in the late afternoon

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