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Fitness and Photography for Fun - A blog on staying fit by hiking and doing photography by David Mendosa

Peru’s Lachay Hills

December 7th, 2013 · 2 Comments

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My tour of the upper reaches of the Amazon River in Peru began and ended in Lima, the country’s capital. But as soon as we could leave Lima for a further Peruvian adventure we did.

While two of our group — the two doctors from Puerto Rico — flew home as soon as we arrived back in Lima, the other six of us (plus the tour leader, the guide, and the driver) chose to take an optional excursion to the Reserva Nacional de Lachay in the Lachay Hills, a two-hour drive north of Lima.

We travelled along the South Pacific Ocean all the way. But unlike the stereotype of the South Pacific, the weather was cool and foggy. Well, this was winter in the Southern Hemisphere, so I shouldn’t have been surprised. But what a difference from the weather on the Amazon at the other side of the Andes!

Our destination was a unique mist-fed ecosystem covered with clouds almost all of the year. We were there in the humid season, and the mist was heavy on the land all day.

Until we turned off the paved highway into the reserve, the going was good. Immediately, however, we came across a roadblock. Apparently, no one else had visited the reserve for a while.

Kevin, Edison, and the Driver Clear the Road (I Helped in my Own Way by Recording the Event)

Kevin, Edison, and the Driver Clear the Road (I Helped in my Own Way by Recording the Event)

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Our Group Seems to Spot Something

Our Group Seems to Spot Something

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I Spot a Rufous-collared Sparrow and a Male Collared Warbling-Finch Together

I Spot a Rufous-collared Sparrow and a Male Collared Warbling-Finch Together

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The Male Vermilion Flycatcher Was Hard to Miss

The Male Vermilion Flycatcher Was Hard to Miss

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We actually had two separate expeditions into the Lachay Hills. In the morning we didn’t see a singe person except for a goatherd tending his goats up on a ridge above us. But in the afternoon we went to a different area full of fields of millions of flowers that many Peruvians were also enjoying.

A Few Flowers

A Few Flowers

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I began to think that I wouldn’t be able to photograph anything but those beautiful fields of flowers on this side of the reserve. Soon, everyone else got the same idea, and we took off up the road in the van. But just then we came to a real birding hotspot. Burrowing owls were very close.

This Burrowing Owl Was the Final Bird I Saw in South America

This Burrowing Owl Was the Final Bird I Saw in South America

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Owls are one of my favorite genera of birds. And unlike most owls, burrowing owls are active during the day and are therefore easy to see. I love the way they look at us. This little owl was the final bird to see me on this trip.

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Posted in: Peru

2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 John Dorey // Dec 11, 2013 at 8:48 am

    Wow, what a great trip, David. I was wondering what you were up to lately. Pictures, as usual, are awesome. The only part I don’t envy is getting soaked by the rain.

    Cheers, John

  • 2 David Mendosa // Dec 11, 2013 at 11:33 am

    Dear John,

    Thanks for your comment. And I only got soaked once!

    Namaste,

    David

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