Posted by Rob & Lauren Lim on
When we were on our jungle tour we had the opportunity to do a night walk through the jungle. It was just a path behind our lodge, but that didn’t stop us from being really excited! You see, during the day the jungle can be rather overwhelming. It’s really really hot, and the vast amount of vegetation around you can be very distracting. At night the temperature cools off to a more comfortable level, and you can only see what your flashlight illuminates, allowing for a totally different experience!
We covered ourselves in DEET and headed out with our guide. We were lucky in that it was just the three of us, since our other traveling companions decided not to join us. Armed with our flashlights, we walked into the jungle.
Within a few minutes of walking, our guide spotted this huge spider on a tree. I can’t believe the camoflauge that these creatures have, it’s remarkable!
To take these photos Rob used a Filzer 100 Lumen LED flashlight that we picked up from MEC, and I shot them all with the only lens I had with me, the 35mm 1.4. That meant I had to get close. Real close. That was not the most comfortable experience ever, but it was fun! Funny story: As I was taking the above shot I felt a distinct crawling sensation under my pants. Picture yourself in the Amazon jungle, at night, it’s pitch black, you’re staring at the scariest spider you’ve ever seen, and all of a sudden something is crawling under your pants. My freakout was contained, since I didn’t want to look like a wimp. But I did smack at my legs with a fair amount of enthusiasm! And I just hoped with everything in me that it was just some ants, and nothing scarier! And then, of course, I threw any sense of fashion out the window and tucked my pants snugly into my socks!! If you’re going on a jungle walk at night, I highly recommend it :) Or be really smart, like Rob, and wear knee high rubber boots! (Rob really really doesn’t like bugs, so he was thinking ahead!)
In Canada we don’t have many interesting insects. I suspect it gets too cold for anything extraordinary! On this very short walk we saw so many exotic creatures that I never dreamed I’d be seeing in real life. That was an unforgettable experience, to be sure.
When we walked through the jungle during the day we didn’t take notice of things quite so much, as there was too much to notice! At night, everything seemed 100X larger, we couldn’t believe it. We actually said “Were these really this big during the day? Are you sure we saw these?” The following shot is of some palm leaves that just towered over us.
There were a lot of spiders out there. A lot.
And a huge cocoon. I think it was for an enormous butterfly. We saw a few fly by us during our daytime walk and they were so big we wondered if they were birds!
Some of the most amazing insects we saw in the jungle were leaf-cutter ants. These guys carry seriously huge pieces of leaf for super long distances. During the day we’d often come across a trail of them all carrying bits of leaves. At night, however, we were able to spot them actually cutting up a leaf which was really really cool to see.
This grasshopper was probably around 4 inches long. It was enormous!! Drew said it would be a whole meal :)
This is a tiny scorpion that our guide spotted. How he ever saw this thing is beyond me. It was TINY! But it sure moved fast!
And finally a huge millipede. As you can see, we saw so much!! We even saw some bats flying around, and big hairy tarantulas hiding in holes, waiting for an unsuspecting bug to fall into them. Those buggers scuttled away the second we tried to get close, so no photos. You’ll just have to go there yourself to see them! ;)
All in all, this was possible one of our favorite experiences in the jungle. The sounds around us were unbelievable. There are tons of cicadas that just make a truly deafening noise, and birds and other bugs join in with them. At one point it started raining, and we could hear the drops falling on the leaves above us, but because of how dense the jungle was, we didn’t get wet at all. It was really a intense and incredible experience, and one that I would highly recommend! Next time we want to spend a whole night out in the jungle. Man, that would be something!
P.S. I’m currently writing this from our office at home in Edmonton! We arrived here yesterday afternoon, and have slowly been adjusting to life in Canada. But now is when things can start amping up on this blog, since we have access to fast internet and powerful computers to show you some really incredible videos! And also, we now can start giving away some prizes for all our awesome readers, so definitely make sure you’re checking in frequently because things are going to get fun here!