This trip was lots of fun, and different than the others because it was just me and two other americans who planned it last-minute. It was totally worth it, though.
This is a picture of the “Ranger’s Station” in our area of Lake Maracaibo. For those not familiar with Venezuelan geography, this lake is actually the huge bay in northern Venezuela, but they all call it a lake because the inlet is small in comparison with how big the area of water is, and the species here (at least where we were, on the south-west edge of it) are fresh-water.
This is where we slept (yay for the return of the hammocks!) Luckily there was a breeze for most of the night so we didn’t get bitten too badly by the mosquitoes. My hammock was the one closest to the corner, and when it got dark I could see the stars from where I was laying down. It was really clear at night and was excellent stargazing conditions once the quarter moon retired. It was amazing, this picture is facing north, and that’s where the lightning phenomenon started and stayed for about two hours, then it moved to the southwest. So we had this awesome lights show in the distance (I decided it was a pretty good substitute for missing the 4th of July celebrations) and a clear sky above us.
At its peak, we would see flashes every two or three seconds. Most of it was cloud-to-cloud, but some of it was striking down too. It was too far away to hear the thunder, but that made it all the more mysterious and special. Most of the night I sat with my two other american girl friends talking about our Venezuelan experience. There were only five of us tourists there (two Germans were with us), with two guides and the boat driver. I think I prefer smaller groups like this, you can get to know people better and generally have a more intimate experience. Read the rest of this entry ?