I need to confess up front to those of you who don’t know me personally that this post is going to sound a bit like a sales pitch. When I finished the draft and re-read it the next day I realized it had maybe a little too much hype. So, let me be clear before you get to the rest… it’s not hype… I am just plain excited about going back to Ecuador and putting my camera and imagination back to work!
My last trip to Ecuador in October actually had two missions. The first was to photograph the wedding of my friends Jason and Tania Murphy in Santo Domingo, Ecuador. Jason is a remarkable guy who grew up in Upstate New York and is not afraid to take the path ‘less beaten’ in his life choices. His wife Tania is from Ecuador and they are building a life and business that bridges the two countries and cultures.
Friend and fellow photographer Sandy Morris of Safari Party Adventures has had an Ecuador tour on his ‘short’ list for a long time. When we all came together we realized the potential for a fabulous trip was immediately in the offing.
So, my second mission on the October trip was to explore Ecuador with Jason and Sandy scouting out great photo locations for documenting the people, culture, and the amazing environmental diversity for which Ecuador is so well known. And, of course, we wanted to identify the very best accommodations to make a great trip unforgettable.
The result of that scouting trip is a unique tour planned for August 9-20, 2008. Jason’s website, Pro-Ecuador.com is hosting this memorable adventure organized by Safari Party Adventures. I am very pleased and excited to have been invited to join the tour as a “photo specialist” support person. What that means is you don’t have to be an expert photographer to join and appreciate this tour. In fact, you don’t have to be a “photographer” at all, but a great deal of effort has been put into making sure that the places we visit will have great photo potential and that we will not be rushing around on a minute by minute schedule. It takes time to make great images and this tour will provide both the time, the opportunities, and the help and advice you may need to capture photos you will be proud to show off when you get home. It doesn’t matter if you are shooting with a simple point and shoot or have the latest in DSLR gear, you will fit in.
I have marvelous images taken in Quito’s “Old City”. The beautiful old European influenced architecture is every combination of lines, colors, textures, and patterns you can imagine. Throw in the bustle of people coming and going, playing and working and you have the mix for photo magic.
A real ‘high’ on this trip will be at the hot springs resort, Papallacta, nestled between towering Andes peaks at nearly 11,000 feet. There are miles of trails with hundreds of species of birds and plants. At that altitude you have to pace yourself a bit, but that’s OK because who wants to run through a visual feast? When the clouds part on the horizon, we may get a peek at one of the many volcanoes dotting the Andes ranges. A good soaking in the hot springs after a long trek will be the reward for the days’ effort, (not to mention the images in your camera).
This will all be in stark contrast to the subtropical forests when we head West towards the coast. A land of contrasts… spare batteries will be essential for your camera to keep up!
Combine that with beautiful, amazing and intimate world class resorts and cuisine and you have a trip I guarantee you will be talking about for a long time afterwards.
Safari Party Adventures and Pro-Ecuador.com have worked very hard to make this trip a great value. Click here to read about the complete itinerary and to reserve your place. You will find more photos from my past visits to Ecuador there and be sure check out the Ecuador related albums at my Imagesbypyarnall.com gallery if you haven’t visited before. There’s also a link at the top of the page.
I will be posting more on this upcoming trip to make suggestions on equipment and other preparations. Don’t hesitate to call or write me directly if you need answers to photo related questions you may have about the trip.
Personally, I can’t wait to get back! Join me… it’ going to be awesome!