- Expedition Itinerary -
Please note the first expedition departs London on Saturday April 2nd, and returns on Tuesday April 12th. The second expedition departs London on Saturday April 16th, and returns on Tuesday April 26th and the itinerary for both expeditions are set out below:
Day 1: Expedition members arrive in Caracas, Venezuela and are met at the airport by Ibex Earth staff. Expedition members will then travel to Cuidad Bolivar and transfer to 4x4 vehicles to travel to Santa Elena (the starting point for the expedition). On route, we stop at the National Parks Office to pick up our permits.
Day 2: The group is taken on a 4x4 jeep tour across the Gran Sabana for familiarisation, and receive equipment training and survival skills from the expedition leader. The tour includes visiting the beautiful Kama Waterfall and the world famous Jasper Creek - a riverbed made of scarlet, semi-precious gemstone. Around sunset, we arrive in the remote Amerindian community of Paratepui where we spend the night, and get our first glimpse of the towering “lost world” plateaus of Mount Roraima and Kukenan Tepui looming on the horizon.
Day 3: The third day marks the start of the trek. Expedition members walk to the first camp (Rio Tek), passing lowland savannah wildlife including giant anteaters, and idyllic traditional Amerindian villages. Once we arrive at the Rio Tek camp, we build our tents among the thatched Amerindian settlements and cook dinner before sunset next to the great Kukenan River that flows from the fourth tallest waterfall on earth.
Day 4: Expedition members climb up the lower slopes of Mount Roraima, and into the shadow of the great plateau, through cloud forest stopping at Base Camp for the night. The climb brings us ever closer to the immense ramparts of Mount Roraima, traversing the ancient talus slopes that encircle the mountain – the home to colourful orchids and giant bromeliads. Today is the most strenuous day of the trek – lasting seven hours, but passing much of the most beautiful scenery that we will encounter on the expedition.
Day 5: An early start will see the group ascend the dramatic ledge up the gigantic cliffsides of Mount Roraima, climbing towards the summit and reaching the mountain top by early afternoon. The ascent passes through mossy cloud forest, filled with ancient tree ferns, colourful tree frogs, and hummingbirds.
Expedition members will then explore the spectacular scenery and bizarre wildlife of Arthur Conan Doyle’s ‘lost world’. This will include searching for ancient toads, Roraima’s rare Coatimundi and carnivorous plants. After one hour of walking, we make camp in a great cave system in the south of the plateau, cooking dinner as flames flicker on the ancient cave walls.
Day 6: The group treks north to explore Mount Roraima’s spectacular labyrinth of towering stone pinnacles and a valley lined with shimmering quartz crystals. We also explore deep fissures in search of primitive oil birds, wind carved sculptures and areas of Roraima’s unique and unearthly vegetation. We set up camp in caves in the north of the great plateau.
Day 7: The expedition leader takes the group to the underground world of Mount Roraima’s ancient cave systems, which represent some of the largest, most spectacular yet least explored quartzite caves in the world. The group will then return to Mount Roraima’s summit and once again spend the night in the caves near the south of the plateau. At sunset, the group treks to the immense cliffsides of Roraima to view the evening sunlight glance across the mountain’s colossal cliffs, returning before darkness falls completely.
Day 8: After four days on the plateau’s summit, the group begins the descent, climbing down the gigantic ledge of Mount Roraima, and camping near the Kukenan river, at Rio Kukenan camp for a hearty dinner and a final night below the towering massif of the ‘lost world’.
Day 9: The expedition members trek from Rio Kukenan camp back to Paratepui, searching the savannah for wildlife along the way – there’s the chance to see a savannah anteater, or rare rainforest-dwelling scarlet macaws of the lowland. In the Amerindian village of Paratepui, the expedition is met by 4x4 vehicles and travel to Santa Elena for a well earned drink and shower.
Day 10: The group is chauffeured from Santa Elena to Cuidad Bolivar, spending the night in the historic city centre on the banks of the mighty Orinoco River.
Day 11: An early start will see the group leave Cuidad Bolivar for Caracas, arriving in time for afternoon and evening flights back to the UK.
The Lost World Project has received endorsement from the Royal Geographical Society and has won the Captain Scott Society ‘Spirit of Adventure’ Award 2010 – if you would like to be part of the adventure of a lifetime then please email firstname.lastname@example.org and you will be sent a full expedition pack for The Lost World Project.