Friday
Jul082011

What to pack – Alex – Online Journalism Intern

 

What’s your best travel experience?

My best travel experience came in the Madre de Dios region of the Peruvian Amazon where I worked on a conservation project focusing on animal rehabilitation and documenting biodiversity in the area. With a tree house high in the rainforest canopy and eventful night-walks around the lodge, it’s tough to choose just one moment. However, night-time caiman hunting was always an exciting event.

After dinner all of the volunteers would gather in the boat, with the project manager perching at the front with a torch. As we passed the banks, countless orange eyes would glint in the torch light. Having made his choice, the project manager would hang from the front while the boat edged closer and closer to the beady little eyes. The silent anticipation before a well-aimed grab to avoid the caiman’s sharp teeth was always a tense moment. If successful, which he usually was, the scaly reptile would be passed between the volunteers while we were told a few interesting facts, like how their jaw muscles are almost completely dedicated to closing the mouth as quickly as possible to catch prey.

When I was faced with the opportunity to catch a caiman myself, the warning I’d been given about loosing fingers was obviously too much for me and I regretfully didn’t do it.

What did you take?

The project advised me on what I should be packing, and having never been anywhere like it before, I followed their suggestions carefully. Looking back, I could have managed with much less, like the expensive walking boots I invested in, which I eventually gave to a local farmer that we were working with. The most vital pieces of kit I took were a mosquito net, a head torch, a pack of cards with poker chips, and some good books.

What do you wish you had taken?

I wish I could have afforded a good quality camera to take with me. Going to somewhere like that is always going to provide great opportunities for amazing photos, like the iridescently-skinned rainbow boa that crossed in front of me on an early morning stroll. Photos will never be a substitute for actually being there, but quality shots are nice to have.

Which Frontier project would like to visit?

I haven’t dived yet, so getting my PADI certificate would be high on my list of things to do on a Frontier project. I don’t know too much about each one yet, but the photos from the Fiji project look incredible, so I’d have to say that one at the moment. Although the chance to work with all the African safari animals I’ve grown up watching on TV in Tanzania would be hard to ignore.

What would you take there?

Both Fiji and Tanzania would throw up some great photos, so I would definitely try to get hold of a decent camera. With all the diving in Fiji, I would make sure I could take underwater snaps too. Some binoculars would probably come in quite handy in Tanzania.

Thursday
Jul072011

Discover threatened species with Frontier pt. 2

Wednesday
Jul062011

Win a Lomography camera!

Wednesday
Jul062011

Fighting for Survival – Endangered Animals

Wednesday
Jul062011

Last female rhino killed in South African park

Tuesday
Jul052011

Discover threatened species with Frontier

Monday
Jul042011

10 Significant Extinctions this Decade

Friday
Jul012011

What to Pack – Petros – Gap Year Travel Advisor

What’s your best travel experience?

Living on an old steam boat made in 1876 in the Peruvian Amazon for a month. I was collecting fieldwork data for my dissertation in the Largo Preto Conservation Concession on a tributary on the Amazon River called the Yavari River (which forms the border between Peru & Brazil in the western Amazon basin).

It was an amazing trip with too many fantastic experiences to talk about them all at the moment but some of highlights include having to catch piranha for dinner, discovering new species of frog, pink river dolphins at dusk and catching a 7.5 foot caiman.

What did you take?

I tried to keep everything to the minimum so brought some basic gear really including; a head torch, insect repellent and a sleeping bag.

But the things I couldn’t have done without are my digital camera (which was only a small Sony Cybershot at the time) and a makeshift external hardrive fashioned out of an old iPod to store all the photos on. Finally and most surprisingly I had a couple of bandanas which I found invaluable not only did they make for a good bit of jungle chic but also came in useful for nearly all scenarios.

What do you wish you had taken?

Wellies, for some reason they just seem to be more versatile in a jungle environment than walking boots especially when it comes to protection from the mud (all the locals use them). Also a better camera, with a larger zoom which is why I’m now in the process of acquiring a Nikon D7000 with a 18-200mm lens.

What Frontier project would like to visit?

Madagascar – it’s been a childhood dream to go there which is why I’m looking forward to starting work there in September as an Assistant Research Officer . It has so much unique wildlife and as I’m a bit of a reptile fan I would particularly like to study chameleons. Also the new camp looks like it would be amazing.

What would you take there?

A solar charger for times when the generators not working, a dry bag to keep the camera dry (I heard I’ll be there in the rainy season) along with a light poncho and those trusty wellies.

Thursday
Jun302011

Victory for the Serengeti

Wednesday
Jun292011

Frontier Style: Happy Feet

Whilst many of us will be sad to see the end of Glastonbury we must keep in mind that it marks the beginning of Summer Festivals this year, and with lots more on the way, why not decorate those dancing feet with an array of trendy, traditional and quirky Wellington boots.

Wellieboots.com offers a variety of designs for you to choose from. There is a specific festival option where you can purchase Wellington boots with funky festival patterns. So you can shine despite any potential hum drum weather.

For those who prefer the cool original Hunter boots, these are available in numerous colours. Men too can explore the trendy palette. For those who want to join the summer party glory or simply bring a camping experience to life, we recommend the aubergine option, manly yet simultaneously glamorous.

If colour and patterned boots aren’t your thing you may prefer the traditional route. This is also available at the original Wellington boot site. You can spoil yourself in a leather-lined pair and add some sophistication to your camping or festival adventures!

By Nancy Bukasa

Wednesday
Jun292011

Should wild animals be used in circus performances?

Tuesday
Jun282011

What to pack - Charlotte - Overseas Operations

Tuesday
Jun282011

Turtle smugglers intercepted in Bangladesh

Monday
Jun272011

Super solution to contaminated water problem

Friday
Jun242011

Travel apps – the Future of Backpacking?