Steve Berberich


Steve Berberich

Married to Ruth, three daughters, four grandchildren, retired architect. Enjoy about anything outdoors...gardening, camping, canoeing, sea-kayaking, wood turning, bee keeper, and of course traveling. Ruth has recently retired from public school teaching career, so we are looking to travel as our full-time avocation.

North America » United States » Georgia » Atlanta June 1st 2014

After being home a few days, I still can't get over how amazing the month in Peru really was, almost perfect. I am finding it difficult to answer inquisitive people w/o going into a long answer. We had the chance to live and learn about a totally different culture and society. We got a different perspective on various historical events. And Phil and I had a chance to get to know each other better. We now have acquaintances from literally all over the globe. A couple of things keep coming to mind... The LAN Airline In-Magazine has a message from their CEO titled "Building Bridges." He was making the point that as social beings we all feel the need to be connected to others. This is demonstrated by the billions of people using Facebook, Twitter, and ... read more
Trail group
Eddy - explaining Inca lookouts
Caesar - and crew

South America » Peru » Cusco » Manu National Park May 23rd 2014

Here's the plan - Back on the boat early in the morning, we head downstream to the small mining village Boca Colorado. Here and in Mazuco later on, you can see the negative effects of certain human activities on the delicate ecological balance of the rainforest. We take local transportation until crossing the Inambari River. On the other side, our van is waiting to take you over a newly paved road, through beautiful cloud and elfin forest. Near Cusco, you have stunning views of the Ausangate Mountain.Cusco is reached in the early evening. Approx. 12 hrs journey. We're up before first light to get on the boat for 4hr boat ride. We'll have breakfast on the boat. All the sand bars provides plenty of opportunity to see lots of birds, mostly ones we have seen, but ... read more

South America » Peru » Cusco » Manu National Park May 20th 2014

Many of you who have been shaking your head, and have really no interest in bush banos and cold showers would love Tambo Blanquillo. The facilities are really quite nice, hot showers, and an amazing number of great things to do. Although the global economy seems to have taken its toll on other lodges, this one is expanding. All of the accommodations to date have been single beds and share toilets, they are building a few cottages with full sized beds and toilets en-suite. They even had a bar, but I was too tired and not up for any late nights. At first light we head to the macaw lick to watch the dazzling spectacle of hundreds of parakeets, parrots and big macaws eating clay. Interesting, that this clay lick seems to be much more ... read more
Macaws at clay lick

South America » Peru » Cusco » Manu National Park May 18th 2014

We've settled into our jungle lodging, candle light at night, sharing the toilets and cold showers with the resident black tarantula. Up early for a hike, often before breakfast. Mid-morning hike, lunch and siesta. Late afternoon hike, dinner and then a night hike. The Rainforest is a Fascinating Place! A highlight of our stay here was the time spent on Lake Salvador. Michel had taken the opportunity to sign up two slots on the lake. The previous evening was amazing, but we were wanting to spot the rare giant river otter. We were more than rewarded as the family not only showed up, but performed for us right in front of the boat. We also identified a lot of birds...I've added approx. 125 birds to my list. The afternoon hike was centered around tracking down monkeys ... read more
Otters feeding on fish

South America » Peru » Cusco » Manu National Park May 18th 2014

Safe water - ✔ Bananas - ✔ Extra outboard motor - ✔ Today we take a 6-hr boat ride deeper into Manu Reserve Zone. First we stop for a swim in a hot springs. There we'll meet, Michel, our guide for the remainder of our trip, and pick up four people who will join us. Their English accent sounds familiar...yep, all four from UK. I've been giving Phil a hard time, as he has cranked up the British accent since we landed in Peru. I can only imagine how it will go now! The expression of people separated by a common language came to mind. No sooner than taking off, we pulled over to the river edge to trade bread for Chicha de jora; the Peruvian version of corn beer. They passed it around the boat ... read more
Hot Springs
Typical home - swap bread for "beer"

South America » Peru » Cusco » Manu National Park May 16th 2014 Leaving Cusco before dawn, we began an 8-hour journey over the Andes by van. Turned out it was just Phil and I for the few couple of days of our trip, Jose would be our guide, Hugo our cook and driver. Traveling Peruvian roadways are always an adventure, rock slides just around the blind corner, not to mention the possibility of a head-on collision. We stopped at a pre-Inca ruin where you can see the small stone towers constructed to entomb the mummified bodies of prominent community people. Saw the remnant of a house which had a raise hearth for cooking and bench with voids in the stone work supporting it, for housing the resident guinea pigs, which ran free in the homes. We stopped for breakfast at the beautiful colonial village of Paucartambo. Interesti ... read more
Cock of the Rock
Numerous landslides
View of valley below

Can't believe a week can go this quick. But will be anxious to take our clothes to a laundry and take a hot shower. You are always sweating and nothing dries out. We got up for a beautiful sunrise and took a morning hike. Still amazed by the walking palm, ant tree, etc. Came across a flock of Pale-winged Trumpeters. The research station had raised a few macaws some years ago. These birds were introduced back in the wild where they found wild mates. However, these birds did frequent to lodge and took to artificial nest boxes. Spotted several lizards, orchids flowers and such. Fernando stopped and drew a circle with his laser and asked what did we see? ???nothing. Then he drew a smaller circle...again couldn't see anything. Then he drew it about 12 in. ... read more
Walking Palm

At the crack of dawn we hopped in the boat and headed for the Macaw Clay Lick. On most clear mornings of the year dozens of large macaws and hundreds of parrots congregate on this large river bank in a raucous and colorful spectacle which inspired a National Geographic cover story. Discretely located fifty meters from the cliff, we observed Green-winged, Scarlet and Blue-and-gold Macaws and several species of smaller parrots descend to ingest clay. Since it was just Phil and myself, Fernando had arranged for us to sit with the researchers, not with the others from the lodge. Then we headed back for breakfast. After breakfast we headed for the Floodplain Trail. This five kilometer trail covers the prototypical rain forest with immense trees criss-crossed by creeks and ponds. Fernando continued to amaze us with ... read more
White Throat Toucan

We caught a plane from Cusco to Puerto Maldonado, where Rainforest Expeditions picked us up for a ride to their headquarters. Skirting Puerto Maldonado, we drive 20 kilometers to the Tambopata River Port, entering the Native Community of Infierno. The port is a communal business. Then transfer to a boat for two and a half hour boat ride from the Tambopata Port to Refugio Amazonas. This trip took us past the Community of Infierno and the Tambopata National Reserve´s checkpoint and into the buffer zone of this 1.3 million hectare conservation unit. To our surprise, Phil and I were assigned to Fernando as our guide for the week...just the two of us. I was quite surprised by how wide these tributaries to the Amazon Basin were, with lots of rapids and log jams. Spotting various animals ... read more
Harpy eagle chick
Wide and fast moving river

South America » Peru » Cusco » Cusco » Cusco May 9th 2014

I just want to relax. Phil took a city tour thru Lllamapath. I ended up walking the town and did catch one of the open topped City tour buses. Cusco is really very walkable. They don't allow pictures in the church, but snagged one off internet, The Last Supper painting displayed showed a Guinea Pig as the main course. Saqsaywaman is a Inca ruin just outside of town. Tour guide was frustrated with Americans calling it "sexy women." Also went up on the hilltop to visit the "white Christ" statue that overlooks the city and serves for wayfinding around Cusco. I walked to the City Market to check our the various products offered. I have really enjoyed the different fruit, and enjoy the refreshing taste of the Pricky Pear Cactus. Picked up some nuts, coffee and ... read more
Hostal terrace
Hostal terrace

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