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Rainforest Walks

Posted: Wed May 25, 2005 1:06 pm
by M Smith
We have read that the rainforest gets very muddy and 'sturdy shoes' are appropriate. I thought about buying some leather trainers as they will cover the foot, have some good grip and allow feet to breathe. Having tiny feet I struggle with blisters with the more tough type of walking boot.
Do you think that this type of shoe is adequate?

Posted: Wed May 25, 2005 1:51 pm
by Dave Guest

I took some sturdy walking boots with me when we visited the rainforest last year. However I was strongly advised by someone else in the group who had been in the day before to hire a pair of wellies instead. He was right... it was very muddy in places and the wellies were ideal.

Hey I just remembered something about that trip.

About an hour after entering the rainforest there was a series of shouts from behind us followed shortly by the guy who'd hired us the wellies coming jogging down the trail. He was out of breath and waving a welly above his head and asking "who has the size 12's?". He'd been having a sort out and realised he had 2 left feet in size 12 and no rights. He figured somebody must be wearing 2 rights so he ran all the way into the rainforest to catch us up and swap them over for the correct ones :)

Posted: Wed May 25, 2005 2:00 pm
by M Smith
Thanks-bit worried about insects getting in the wide tops though......!!!-OK-probably sound paranoid now!

Posted: Wed May 25, 2005 6:10 pm
by Julia C.
Don't worry - there aren't that many insects - I expected far more creepy crawlies - probably from watching jungle wildlife programmes on the TV. There are some mossies though.
You could take some long socks and fold them over the top of the wellies and wear long trousers or pedal-pushers over the top. 8)

Posted: Wed Jul 20, 2005 4:14 pm
by Martin Pavey
We went on an early morning birdwatching trip last week with Harris Mc Donald. We took our hiking boots ready for the trip, but wished we had used the wellies as the going was very wet and muddy. You also need to take some old long trousers that don't matter if they get muddy. Of course in the drier season mud won't be such a big problem.

It was however a fantastic hike into the rainforest. We were picked up at around 5:30am from the hotel so it is an ideal trip early in a visit for European visitors before they have compensated for the jet lag.

We saw a huge number of different birds, including the very rare White Tailed Sabre Wing Hummingbird.

Harris is a very knowledgeable guide which made it a fantastic outing highly recommended for anyone interested in birds and nature.

Posted: Sat Dec 10, 2005 10:22 pm
by Bob Michele M
We have GoreTex lined hiking boots that we've used on rainforest hikes in the past (though not on Tobago). What would folks recommend for guide services?
Bob and Michele (13 days . . .)

Posted: Sun Dec 11, 2005 10:30 am
by Steve Wooler
Hi Bob

Given that you will be in the Upper Caribbean region, I would suggest that you look at local guides. Alibaba and King David are the two most established and reputable guides in that area.

Posted: Sun Dec 11, 2005 6:36 pm
by Joanne Green
Dear Bob & Michele--

If you're going to be in Tobago during the dry season (Jan. -April), don't bother with hiking boots. The trails are dry enough for just sneakers. Plus, the boots take up an awful lot of room in the suitcase!!

As to a rainforest guide, I can't recommend King David Tours highly enough. He has a website - His nephew Kelly was practically raised in the forest & is a great guide. He even has his own private trail, near Englishman's Bay, that he hacked out of the rainforest himself!! David Williams is very professional and a truly class act. Kelly is so enthusiastic and so knowledgable, not only about birds, but about trees, insects orchids, etc. Their prices are in line with other qualified guides.

A further note. Kelly is a very careful driver, which is important, considering the state of Tobago roads!!

Joanne Green

Posted: Fri Mar 10, 2006 12:15 am
by Tricia C
Looks like there are too many choices for who to pick for the rainforest / waterfall hikes ! Is there a main parking area at the entrance? Easy to drive there and find a guide waiting? :D

Posted: Fri Mar 10, 2006 11:16 am
by Brian Taylor
yes, there is one. but befor eyou reach it some guides will jump in the road already and try to stop you... :lol:
some of the guides at the station are good but others do know the name of 3 trees and 4 birds and just rush you through so you have no time to ask questions. maybe someone has a name of a guide from upthere who he/she had a good experience with. otherwise you can still book with someone in advance (the names are known) and meybe get a better price when you drive there yourself is you like... otherwise you will get a little "islandtour" on the way there is you drive with the guide...
however you do it, enjoy


Posted: Fri Mar 10, 2006 1:21 pm
by Bob Michele M
In January of this year we were lucky enough to have an island tour by "Alibaba" himself (Thanks Brian!), which we would highly recommend. At Argyle Falls, a staff guide named Lenin (spelling?) was fabulous - knew all about the ecology and provided lots of background information. For our rainforest hike, we arranged for an Alibaba guide who was extemely knowledgable - he practically grew up in the forest, following around his father who worked as a wood cutter. We saw so much flora and fauna that we would not have otherwise noticed if he hadn't pointed it all out to us. As Brian has mentioned, some of the "guides" that wait by the trail head do not have the knowledge you might find useful. Hope this helps. Enjoy your visit to lovely Tobago.

Michele (of Bob & Michele M)

Posted: Tue Mar 21, 2006 2:22 pm
by Jan
We`ve also been on an islandtours with Alibaba himself. Graet guy!!
Explained everything exellent and he was very flexible.
Next year we have the rainforest on the schedule.
Looking forward to spend with Jackson who we met as a very friendly guy.

Posted: Sat May 06, 2006 9:43 am
by Arvi
Hallo Jan,
kannst du mir ein email schicken? Leider ist in deinem Profile keine email-adresse. wir fliegen bald nach tobago, und ich würde gerne mich mit dir kurzschließen wegen ausflüge. werde das 5. mal auf tobago sein, aber man kann nicht alles gesehen haben.