My first impression of Peru was that the City of Cusco was designed by a demented game of Sims Architect, rectangular buildings throughout the city and for that matter surrounding area remain incomplete with rebar sticking out from the most upper layer and a floor or two perpetually under construction. I was told this is related to taxes where you pay the full fare if you complete your building. My second impression was I am glad it’s not me driving, the old stone walks near city squares feature 2 foot wide stone walks where cars mirrors can grace you as they past. All of that said it’s a great starting point to tour out from and has it’s own treasures within from great street photography through to the ancient runs of Sacsayhuamán (pronounced Sexy Woman) through to the old churches which were built over the foundations of destroyed Inca structures.
The photographs contained here cover my travels in Peru from the streets of Cusco through to Macchu Pichu and down south (about 40kms from Boliva) in the Amazon Basin and the giant otters of Lake Sandoval (they grow to 6′) on through to the Villaconto Mountains. While each part of the trip has it’s own individual highlights for me the highlight of this trip was the four days in the jungle. Stepping off the plane at Puerto Maldanado (the gateway to the Amazon Basin) the tropical climate hits you right away and the next thing that strikes you is the number of motorcycles and scooters (they have a one helmet rule so you will see three people on one bike and only one has head gear on). Didn’t stay long here, caught a river boat and was off to my basic lodging in the jungle, which featured a pool that didn’t run (it was still an awesome soak with a warm beer) and a big gathering room (like a school camp) where everyone shared meal time. It was simple, basic, you had one plug to charge things (had to break my macs ground plug to use it) and lights from 6 to 9 then it was lights out and sweet sounds of the jungle surrounding you. It was frickin awesome, every morning there was a parrot that landed on the chair outside my room, I feed apple to by hand and then he would fly off. I went for a night walk in the jungle and we killed flashlights, paddled the river and Lake Sandoval and went up about 100′ into the jungle canopy.
From a photography perspective, I have lots of regrets of shots I could have gotten better and tough lessons learned but overall am pleased with these shots. I can tell you this when your standing in a humid jungle marsh trying to photographs Maccaws with the water soaker level on your rubber boots your lens will fog (never got that shot) and in the range of shooting your going to do from action to landscapes your going to want to be sharp on setting things right. Most missed item…tripod and my big 300-600mm zoom.