A very early start for Kaieteur trip today – 5AM wake up call, lovely! After everyone (bar Heather, who was full of beans) emerged from their rooms bleary eyed and got ready we were on our way to Roraima to wait for our bus to the airport. Whilst at Roraima we met two lovely gentlemen from Texas and Oklahoma, who were going to Arrowpoint for the day. They were in Guyana as missionaries and were only around for a week. As conversation flowed, it transpired that they had left their sun cream at home for the day and whilst on route to Arrowpoint there was nowhere for them to buy sun cream. I therefore piped up and did my good turn for the day, offering them my sun cream, considering that we had enough between us for everyone. A ‘Thank y’all darlin’ ensued and the obligatory photo with me and Hector!
It was a shame they were going to Arrowpoint, they would have been a good pair to get to know around Kaieteur Falls. However we were with three Dutch girls for the day that stayed mostly to themselves. We were being sent to Ogle Airport instead of the main international airport and therefore had some time to kill before leaving Roraima at 6.45 – mind you the airport was only ten minutes away but the bus took 20 min to get there – we think he was killing time! However after you have been driven around in Guyanese buses for the last two weeks, disregarding speed limits, a bus going at 15mph makes you grind your teeth and wish for him to hurry up!!
We finally made it however and saw our little 10 seater plane for our trip, I loved the look of it but Emily and Olivia were not as sure. I was very lucky to get to sit in the front seat with the pilot for the journey to Kaieteur, which took around an hour. As we made our way up and across Georgetown it was amazing to see the expanse of fields that are hidden behind the houses on the main roads – we never knew it was so vast. And where the fields stopped, the forest started; honestly it went on and on and on! Absolutely incredible and beautiful to see from the air. The view was incredible below and above, flying through the clouds at 6000 ft in a little plane is a completely different experience to being on a commercial plane, and it was fantastic to see the brilliant whiteness of the clouds and the wispiness of them as we flew through them. I loved every minute of it.
As we neared Kaieteur the pilot turned to me and told me to keep my yes on front as he was going to take us past the waterfall. Little did we know what that meant! There were some sharp turns and dives to take us above and alongside the waterfall, it was a bit like aero acrobatics and definitely got the adrenalin pumping that’s for sure! Can’t fault it though as got some great views. As we came to land I realised that not all passengers felt quite as I did, Olivia was clinging onto Heather for dear life and I believe Emily was white knuckled by the end of it. To be fair to them there should have been some warning about the planes drastic turns and dives!
Once on the ground we had two hours to follow the guide through the rainforest and to the viewing platforms, so of we trekked. Our first stop was Johnson’s platform (named after the contractor who built some bridges and steps along the trail). Not many people usually get to go up to Johnsons viewing platform as a woman had fallen into a crevice a few years before and needed ropes to get her back out, as she was stuck. We however were an ‘agile’ group and therefore allowed to go along the trail. Once at the top the view was stunning, as you can see below.
Onto the next view – Boy Scouts View (named after the boy scouts who had camped there, we think it should be named Girl Guides View in honour of our visit!) The view was even more spectacular than the previous one as we were getting closer to the waterfall. Third platform was called Rainbow View, due to being able to see a rainbow at certain times of the day, though we unfortunately didn’t see one. As we were getting closer the sound of the falls intensified and at the last platform it was crashing down. The fourth platform was where the water flowed over the edge and we were able to sit on the bank with our feet in the water taking in the view, of both the waterfall and the valley in the distance. Our guide told us that if you wash your face in the water of Kaieteur it takes ten years off you, so Fiona and Heather were right in there! :p Mind you it wasn’t so great that Clare washed her face and reverted back to her ten year old self!
The waterfall was amazing, though it was quite a rushed visit and we wanted a bit longer to just sit and take in the view. However it was back to the airstrip and back to reality. Heather was in the front seat this time, which she loved. The journey back was less eventful than the way there, although with Olivia next to me my job was looking after her… my hand was squeezed quite a bit along with Hector! So proud of both Olivia and Emily mind you, it’s better to face your fears than not at all and they both went up in the little plane, so flying definitely won’t ever defeat them!
Afternoon was a tad uneventful – sleeping, cleaning, writing diaries etc. However the evening was much better, as we had Tiana and Erin over for pizza. Unfortunately they were the only two Goldies who could make it, though that meant all the more pizza for us! It was a great evening and full of laughs, with Erin and Tiana telling us all about Guyanese music; I’m not sure most of it would make it through the UK’s censorship!
A great day out at Kaieteur and a great evening with Erin and Tiana 😀
Lots of Goldie love,