The Amazon region in Northern Peru will soon be the birthplace of a new adventure activity – Canyoning !
This region has lots of natural places and offers distractions for everybody: history and archaeology lovers, but also hikers, birders, nature lovers and other kind of adventure lovers.
A community in the province of Bongara will soon offer a new activity known as canyoning. We are in Cuispes near to Pedro Ruiz, just a little over one hour from Chachapoyas.
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Today the weather is very nice, we are in the valley of the waterfalls. This is where people come to visit the famous Yumbilla, one of the highest waterfalls in the world.
A young Spaniard, Juan Luis Molins, immediately loved this area, its waterfalls and streams. Passionate about adventure tourism, he imagined being able to implement here this activity of canyoning. Canyoning is very few known in Peru – and even less in this region.
Supported by a (also) Spanish organization that is known around the world for Canyoning for operning up new channels of canyoning, the project takes shape. The training of future guides should start shortly.
An ‘extreme sport’ in which the participants slide, jump off boulders or rappel down rock faces through waterfalls into mountain streams that cut through a canyon, clad in wet suits, helmets, life jackets, and climbing harnesses, combining the skills of caving, climbing, rappelling, and ‘reading’ the river.
In my quality as beginner, Juan Luis invited me try out a channel that will soon be open to visitors. So today we are three, Jarvic Galoc Cava, one of the influential members of the Cuispes community and one of the first trained in this activity here in Cuispes, Juan Luis and me.
I am in the role of the beginner, who plays the role of a future client, somehow framed by two monitors.
As always in Cuispes, we begin with a walk, in this case of 20 minutes, through a beautiful tropical forest. It is hot, but the shade is nice.
We arrive at the base of one of the great falls of the region, Pabellon, 480 meters high. Little water in the second half of the dry season. Fortunately, the rains should come very soon.
We can begin the initiation. To start with, I will have to climb down a route of …. 4 meters, yes, yes, I see that you are laughing. Well I’m a little dizzy , hein?
And being suspended from a wall, buttocks forward, for the first time – for me for a start that is just enough.
They equip me with harness, carabineer, 8 metal, helmet, a completely new equipment and certified for rappel activity.
Then Juan Luis explains me the safety rules, how to secure the rope on the tree, “Hold on, the tree over there will be strong enough?”, and reassures me as much as he can!
Juan Luis gives me a short demonstration. Then it is my turn.
I am rather stressed, holding tensely the rope with the left hand, which is useless, the rappel system is totally retained by the right hand.
On the ground floor Jarvic, my other partner, holds the rope to pull and to stop me if by chance I confuse myself with everything.
All is going fine, but I don’t feel very comfortable with the brake operation. They make me descend a second time. I start feeling more comfortable in my mouvements, but I want to do it one more time.
Finally I will make a total of three tests on this wall of 4 meters. You think it is too much? Never mind! At my last performance, I am almost jumping. I have it, I can do it ! New sensations ! Great !
Now we can continue.
We descend along the torrent, below the waterfall. Always in the shade, and always in this forest. A beautiful place!
That little man down there, is me!
We arrive at the top of a second rappel. Well here, we talk about 18 meters. Oookaaayyy!
Once again, remember the safety rules, ropes, lock, run, lock the carabineer… Once again, I am entitled to a demonstration of the expert.
Well, here we go again, it is my turn. What do you do in such a case ? Should you look down or not ? I avoid it. Come on, I’ll start!
At this moment, I am very happy to have achieved my three rehearsals in the wall of 4 meters. I know the system works and I know how. I reassure myself as much as I can.
Incredibly stimulating this descent. On the ground floor there is always one that holds the string. And arriving below, it is this feeling of “Yes, I did it !”, I am happy. My adrenaline can finally drop again, because they tell me that there is no more rappel for today.
We keep the rope and take our way along the stream.
We always find more different pleasant places. Finally we arrive at the car – our “little adventure” lasted 2 hours.
Back in the village, we enjoy a refreshing drink well deserved. Yes, because the canyoning makes thirsty ! I can also share with my partners my impressions about this first experience of canyoning.
The type of descent we made today must should be the first official descent that will be offered in the near future in Cuispes. It is classifies as “easy”. Others are scheduled but still need to be reviewed and classified by level. Over time, we will offer here all levels, from beginners to experts. And, above all, we must proceed with the other partners for the training of these routes. A necessary process to accommodate future clients with maximum security.
Very soon, Cuispes in the province of Bongara, department of Amazonas, in addition to its natural attractions, will offer new opportunities for your next stay in Northern Peru. And others are in preparation !
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