The End of an Era

After over 6 years of intensive research and community development work in and around the Yachana Reserve, GVI Amazon is coming to a close. We have finished our final research project (look forward to our Road Effects paper, coming soon!) and are handing over the project to our partner, The Yachana Foundation. They will continue to maintain and monitor the reserve, using it as an hands-on science education center for students -- we're very excited to see what fabulous things this next generation of scientists find! For more detail on GVI Amazon's closure, and our accomplishments over the years, please read on...
GVI Amazon Closure Statement

Friday, August 26, 2011

Dry Season Is Here!!!

As many of us on base camp originally come from the UK, where we love talking about the weather, daily forecasts and climatic conditions here in the rainforest are a constant source of conversation and bemusement. No sooner have you set off on survey, equipped with sunhat, suncream and 5 liters of water, than the sky blackens and unloads an almighty thunderstorm, soaking you and all your gear to the bone.

Drying your clothes is a minefield! Turn your back and they’re wetter than when you washed them!….well maybe not quite, but you see what I’m getting at.

Sleeping the can be bough the storm is bliss for some and more than a challenge for others, as hours of heavy rain pound on the tin roofs of the staff and volunteer dorms through the night. Put simply, there are no five-day forecasts and don’t be surprised if your barbeque plans gets postponed.

Well it’s now August and, after almost a week of being off camp for field trips and meeting new volunteers, we’ve returned to base to find that eerie things are afoot…….

First of all, the clothes I left on the line are dry, and not even that damp rainforest-dry I’ve grown accustomed to, but really dry!

Ok, second is the wash stream. Where I would once go sit in the cool, trickling stream for an afternoon stream-wash (a.k.a. strosh, as in ‘just off for a strosh, you coming?’ or ‘don’t come any further, I’m stroshing al fresco!’), I now find myself more lying on a gravely streambed with soap in my eyes.

Then there’s the mud. I’m sure I left piles of the stuff lying around…..

Anyway, you get the picture.

So we’re into the dry season now, and the skies have been blue for the last four days! Surveys are on, volunteers are swimming, birds are chirping, clothes are drying and delicious solar energy is coursing through this computer’s veins as I type!

While you can’t grumble about a bit of rain in the rainforest, I must admit I’m glad to welcome the sun and the dry season to our little base camp out here in the Ecuadorian Amazon.

Fraser Ross, GVI Amazon Assistant Base Manager