Venezuela Expedition 2016

JBL Expedition 2016 Venezuela

JBL Expedition 2016 Venezuela

Onward Journey to the Table-top Mountains South of Venezuela

We left the Orinoco Eco Lodge early in the morning in the dark and took the boat and bus to Ciudad Bolivar, the capital of the federal state Bolivar not far from the 700 m wide constriction of the Orinoco. In 1967 they opened the first of two bridges over the Orinoco. From the airport we flew in a small 6-seater plane about 400 km south towards Canaima, the starting point for all expeditions to the famous table-top mountains. Actually it was quite a relaxing flight, except in one plane where we had to hold onto the door to stop it from falling off! But better a loose door than a loose engine. During the flight we were able to take our first look at the Tepui, as the table-top mountains are called. These legendary table-top mountains inspired Sir Arthur Conan Doyle to write the novel LOST WORLD, in which he described imaginary dinosaurs having survived in the table-top mountains. In this region there are 115 of those table-top mountains up to 1,000 m high. The height difference between plateau and the rainforest below generates an insuperable barrier for animals and plants which wouldn’t have any chance of survival in the other habitat with the effect that the flora and fauna on the mountain plateaus are completely isolated! The result is an endemic fauna and flora on the plateau!

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