Howdy friends!! I’m sorry I’ve been so absent from the blog lately. Life has shifted into overdrive lately and I have been trying to catch up. BUT! I still want to recap my awesome trip to Ecuador. My Zoo sent me and two other people to Ecuador to track and find wild mountain tapirs!
Our goals were to put new GPS collars on them, take biological samples, and to procure reproductive samples from the male tapirs. We had a super successful trip and were able to find three wild tapirs! But before I get to all the field work, I’d like to highlight the wonderful town of Papallacta which served as our home base for the duration of the expedition.
We stayed in the above hostel called Hostal Coturpa and it was the perfect place for us to stay. Papallacta (meaning potato place) is a small town about an hour’s drive out of Quito. We took a walk to become acquainted with our temporary home.
The plant life was overwhelmingly beautiful. If it isn’t clear yet, Ecuador is gorgeous.
We stopped into a small restaurant to try out a local favorite, sugar cane juice. It was sweet and delicious! We also saw some cool local carvings they make from a native tree. I really wanted this tapir bowl.
We also got to know some of the local dogs. While most of the dogs do have owners, the culture is so different there and the dogs just wander around the streets all day just doing there thing. I loved all of them so much. I wanted to bring them all back with me.
There was a large common room at the hostel that we were able to spread our equipment out on and get organized. They were so accommodating to us and one of our trackers actually worked at the hostel on the days he didn’t go out tracking with us.
One of the highlights of Papallacta were the hot springs. While we spent most days out in the field, we were lucky enough to squeeze a rest day in the middle of the trip. We heard wonderful things about the hot springs there and they did not disappoint. Termas Papallacta were incredibly beautiful and clean.
Each pool was a different temperature and there was a cold plunge pool that this girl could only put one foot into before running back to the warm pools. It was such a perfect way to relax and rest our sore muscles.
I just loved Papallacta and have spent many nights back home here in Colorado dreaming of being back there. Next, I will recap our adventures out in the field!
What is your favorite place on Earth?
Best hot springs you’ve ever been to?