(Cuna, Lumita. “Huaorani Indians: Warriors of the Amazon”)
(Vidal, John. “Ecuador: Four Months to save the World’s last Great Wilderness from ‘Oil Curse’”)(Matt. “Facts and History of Shell Mera”).
(Mission Aviation Fellowship. “Nate Saint”)
(Matt. “Facts and History of Shell Mera”).
(Matt. “Facts and History of Shell Mera”).
(Imagine Ecuador. “Whitewater Rafting Tours Ecuador – Tena, Banos and Near Quito”).
(Ecuador-Travel.net. “New World Monkeys”)
(Tripical-Rainforest-Animals.com. “Ecuador Rainforest Home to One of the Worst Cases of Oil Pollution Ever”)(World Land Trust. “The Ecuador Rainforests”)
Shell EcuadorOff the Beaten Path
Shell, Ecuador Nestled between the Ecuadorian Andes and the Amazon RainForrest Full of beauty and rich with indigenous culture For adventure, natural wonder, cultural uniqueness, andbreath taking wild life it is worth the ninety mile trip on aroad with a mountain threatening landslides on one side andraging rapids up to 3,000 feet below on the other.
Beginnings:The Huaorani Indians The Huaorani was once the largest indigenous group inEcuador Known for being ruthless in their vengeance Armed with spears and poisoned blowguns No contact with the outside world until the 1930s
Beginnings: Shell Oil Company Vast oil resources found beneath the bountiful Ecuadorianrainforest drew Shell Oil Company to investigate its potential In 1937, Shell was established as headquarters for theresearch project Due to hostilities from the Huaorani tribe, the companydecided to abandon the project in 1948
Beginnings: Missionaries In the late 40’s two missionary pilots went to Shell to launchMission Aviation Fellowship MAF’sgoal to reach isolated peoples using aviation Nate Saint, one of the first two missionaries Moved to Shell with his wife to help run the mission base whereboth of their children were born The mission operated successfully for several years makingcontact with the Huaorani through air drops
Beginnings: Missionaries cont. In the mid 1950’s, Shell took the center of the world stage Four of the missionaries had gone missing Killed after finally making land contact with the Huaorani
Beginnings: Hospital Shortly after the MAF tragedy, the HospitalVonzandes DelOriente opened for business The first of its kind in the area, thousands of native peopleswere able to receive medical attention for the first time The original location of the hospital remained standing until2007
Modern Day Shell Today, getting to Shell can still be fairly difficult The airstrip is used primarily for the military and the missionbase The road leading from the capital at Quito to Shell is initiallyembedded in the Ecuadorian Andes Ninety miles, it can take anywhere between 3 hours and 2 daysto travel the distance The road follows begins to run parallel with the Pastaza River Pastaza is a major tributary to the Amazon with class IV rapids
Landslides Due to the excessive rainfall in the region, the roadwaysleading to Shell are known for their landslides At times, the highway is only wide enough for one vehicle topass making even the smallest landslide potentially lethal More often than not they are simply a source of delay fortravel Depending on the severity of the landslide, it can take severaldays to clear away debris
Local Life Most restaurants are “mom and pop” owned and operated With open air dining rooms it allows diners to enjoy the wildlifethat roam the streets More often than not, you will find yourself looking up to finda Capuchin Monkey has made his way to your table side Due to their natural habitat dwindling, the variety of monkeywildlife has become more prevalent in even some of the largercities in Ecuador
Rainforest Just outside of Shell lays “one of the world’smegadiverseregions’’ 100 different types of trees 400 types of amphibians More than 1,500 different birds Wide variety of mammals there is no shortage of exotic wildlife
HikingTrail The first stop on the hiking trail is a thirty footwaterfall From there the route leads up and downmountain sides Inevitably at some point on the journey, it willstart to rain making the terrain a bit moreslippery At the top of the highest point on the trailthere is a clearing towards the top of thefoothill with a clear view of the surroundingrainforest
HikingTrail Cont The final stop makes any discomfort worth the effort Running down the side of the mountain is a stream that hassteadily fallen over the exposed rocks long enough to havesmoothed out a path for itself The smoothed out area is just large enough with enoughwater flowing through it to be a natural water slide
Conclusion Over treacherous roads next to landslides and rapids makingthe journey to Shell Ecuador is worth the effort With a culture that has changed in less than a century fromcomplete isolation to showing tourists a way of life almostthat is almost nonexistent For an amazing variety of wildlife, a diverse rainforest, and anatural waterslide worth a long hike, a trip to the foothills ofthe Ecuadorian Andes where the Amazon basin begins is anamazing place to visit
Works Cited "Ecuador: Four Months to save the Worlds Last GreatWilderness from oil Curse’”. The Guardian. Ed. JohnVidal.Guardian News and Media, 13 Aug. 2011. Web. 18 Feb. 2013. Matt. "Facts and History of Shell Mera." Eyes on Shell. HCJBGlobal, 06 Aug. 2010.Web. 18 Feb. 2013. Cuna, Luminita. "Huaorani Indians:Warriors of the Amazon."Huorani Indians:Warriors of the Amazon. LuminitaCuna, 2007.Web. 18 Feb. 2013.
Works Cited Cont. "Ecuador Rainforest Home to One of theWorst Cases of OilPollution Ever." EcuadorRainforest And Its Devastation by OilProduction. Ed. Irina Gray.Tropical-Rainforest-Animals.com, 2008.Web. 22 Feb. 2013. "The Ecuador Rainforests." EcuadorTropical RainforestProject.World LandTrust, 2011. Web.22 Feb. 2013. "Where Is Shell Mera in Pastaza, Ecuador Located?" Where IsShell Mera in Pastaza, EcuadorLocated?GoMapper, 2013.Web.22 Feb. 2013.