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South / Central America – highlights & horrors??

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    hey everybody,

    My wife and I have decided that we’re tired of the regular Canadian routine, so we have signed up on the W.I.L.D. program with Esprit for Aug ’07, and then we’re going to take a year off to tour South / Central America.

    After the 3 month WILD program, we’ll have WW training and certifications coming out the wazoo, so we’re hoping for at least one of us to try and get WW guide/WW teaching work in a few different countries down south and use that as a way to drive travelling, pay for a few groceries, and get on some smokin’ rivers. [My wife is a nurse at CHEO and is also interested in doing some medical volunteering along the way.] We’re also in the process of learning Spanish now, so should be reasonably functional come November.

    What I’m hoping I can get from all you dudes, are some recommendations <img loading=” title=”Cool” /> (or warnings :evil: ) of …..
    – Outfitting / guiding companies you’d recommend trying (or avoiding) to get hooked up with
    – must-paddle rivers (won’t be up for class V, but interested in class IV and below)
    – good places to stay cheap (are willing to work for food / accomidation, and it doesn’t have to be exclusively river work either)
    – other non-WW stuff that you’d consider a must-see / must-do
    – etc. etc.

    We’ll be done WILD in late Nov ’07, and don’t plan on coming back to Ottawa until early Sept ’08….other than that we’re flexible for where we go & when….so any input you’ve got about anywhere from Mexico–>Chile we’d love to hear!!

    looking forward to hearing your input!



    And one more thing…

    Can someone babysit my kids for a year so I can go with them?



    well the rivers that are famous i believe to be the apurimac in peru and the futelefu in chile. there are probably a lot more, but those are two main ones. ecuador has some statistic: the most white water per land area than any other country in the world… there are tons of apparantly great white water rivers all around ecuador, and it’s such a small country that everything is so close as well… Tena is the main little paddling place i believe, there is a hostel in quito called Crossroads (there was when i was there) that caters to kayakers. They offer free kayak storage and you’d likely meet up with a bunch…

    other essential things to do would be: galapagos islands (expensive, but worth it as we only live once), machu picchu, patagonia, mendoza wine and beef binging…

    anyhow, i’m lazy and leaving work so i’m cutting it short, but this is a start…

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