The inaugural SAVE THE FROGS! Ecuador Ecotour took place June 15th to June 26th, 2016 and was a huge success. Our group of frog enthusiasts explored the Amazon rainforest, the Mindo cloudforests, and the high slopes of the Andes. We found frogs, monkeys, lizard and colorful birds and insects. We ate fabulous food, made new friendships and integrated with people of different cultures, spreading amphibian awareness as we travelled. We hope to see you on the 2017 SAVE THE FROGS! Ecuador Ecotour!

Suchipakari | Mindo | El Crater | Papallacta | Rio Quijos | Teleferico | Villa Da Fiore | El Pahuma | Quito | Laguna Cuicocha

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Suchipakari

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June 17, 2016:
I woke up at the Suchipakari Lodge near the Pununo River in Napo Province, Ecuador. Our ecotour group had breakfast of local Ecuadorian food and fruit juice. We headed down to the river and crossed to the other side in 5-person dugout canoes with no seats. On the far bank arrived the rescue team of two lodge staff with a hurt ocelot that had been attacked by kids who supposedly thought it would kill their chickens or snatch the eggs. It temporarily escaped its makeshift enclosure but our local guides found it and we delivered it to the Amazoonico wildlife rehabilitation center after a half hour hike and then a 45minute boat ride down the beautiful Napo river, which eventually meets the Amazon in Iquitos, Peru, a five day boat trip down river. Amazoonico was set amidst beautiful rain forest. Many of the animals they were rehabilitating had been hurt during captivity in the illegal wildlife pet trade. We saw beautiful macaws and parrots, a caiman, turtles, monkeys and peccaries. The highlight was a large troop of squirrel monkeys jumping through the forest and occasionally feeding on jungle fruits just a few meters from us.
-- Dr. Kerry Kriger, journal entry
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"Good morning! I finally have access to wifi but I'm too exhilarated and exhausted to upload and post pics. I need time to process just the first few days! This is truly an epic adventure with an amazing group of people. One of the best decisions I ever made was saying yes to the Save The Frogs! Ecuador ecotour. My love for frogs have grown, my appreciation and respect of the earth has strengthened, and my awareness of the Ecuadorean people and culture has been a complement to my life. Thank you, Kerry Kriger and Save The Frogs! for this opportunity. #savethefrogs   SAVE THE FROGS!

Okay, I'll leave you with one picture. This butterfly just freeing itself from its cocoon after transforming from one life to another is a symbol of me before and after this trip. I'm ready to fly."
- Deborah Blake Dempsey
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"It was a huge pleasure to go on the trip with some of the staff and other frog lovers and learn more about frogs and frog conservation and see amazing species in their natural habitat!”
— Jessica Scrivener
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June 19, 2016:
Today I awoke at Suchipakari at 715 to the sound of birds. I headed down the hill to the yoga studio and played flute for the Amazon Yoga Class. And joined in the yoga for a while. The birds sounded really nice. I packed up fast and led Emily to the poison dart frog spot by the river. We helped haul everyone's luggage out the km to the bus. Headed to the Ruta de las Cataratas I thought it was going to be a mellow hike but there were stream crossings, lots of mud, steep staircases, lush vegetation, slippery rocks, but everyone was loving it especially by the time we reached the beautiful waterfall. We swam in the water under the fall and I played a bit of flute. We gathered everyone up and implemented stricter safety precautions to ensure everyone got out unscathed. Sandy took a spill in the water but wasn't hurt and seemed super happy when she got out. Adventure gives people adrenalin highs or something of that nature. Deborah Blake Dempsey said “Best trip ever” when we got back, which made me happy(happier!). We had a great box lunch by the first waterfall then boarded the bus and headed out of the Amazon, upslope climbing the Andes, weaving through some beautiful misty mountains (the Andes) and upward eventually to Baeza where the bus stopped for a very fast bathroom break, the hurry being that we needed to pass through the landslide area before 6pm because they close the road then to do construction. We made it by 6 and were happy to not be stuck on the side of the road in a bus all night. We arrived at Papallacta hot springs hotel and took over a few of the cabins. Shenandoah was the first in to our private hot springs. I asked how it was. “Perfect. Amazing” was her response. Had a quick SAVE THE FROGS! Staff meeting and snack session and then joined everyone in the thermal pools. We headed over to the lodge for an excellent dinner. Returned to the cabin, prepared a PowerPoint presentation for the morning and then hit the hot springs again, relaxing and playing flute. Now bedtime in the cabin :)
-- Dr. Kerry Kriger, journal entry

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"Best Trip Ever"
— Deborah Blake Dempsey
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"A deep thank you to the SaveTheFrogs crew, the participants, and all of those directly and indirectly involved in making this trip a success. Love, joy, and peace to you all. May your journeys be safe and filled with joy and may our paths cross again."

-- George Quiroga

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"We never would have imagined the powerful connections we made with both the group and the amazing country of Ecuador and it's beautiful people. We are forever grateful for your friendship. We are forever changed by our experiences. We will see both you and Ecuador again."
— Kelly Geer

Mindo Cloudforest

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"The lodges were generally nicer and more luxurious than I expected." 
-- John Bohrman

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"Thank you all - Kerry, Chelsea, Emily and Kathlyn - for being awesome, knowledgeable, and fun trip leaders. YOU are what made this trip an epic experience. May you each continue to follow your dreams and experience you deepest heart's desires."

-- Deborah Blake Dempsey

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"This was the crown jewel of the trip in every way. Outstanding accommodations, wonderful setting, spectacular surrounding scenery, great little town, the absolute best staff, wonderful guides, great food and activities." --Mike Horton on Casa Divina, Mindo

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"The food this trip has been outstanding"

- Mike Horton

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El Crater and Mitad del Mundo

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"Staying at El Crater high above Mitad del Mundo - incredible views of the Pululahua crater out one window and Mitad out the other!"
-- Andie Herman
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"Just finished an incredible yoga session led by Chelsea Carson with my new #savethefrogs friends on the rim of an extinct volcano, high up in the clouds, near the Equator line dividing the Northern and Southern hemispheres of the Earth surrounded by the beautiful Equadorian landscape. Then listened to our group leader Kerry Kriger play the bamboo flute while we soaked in the energy of the Earth.

— George Quiroga

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Papllacta

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"Perfect. Amazing."

—   Shenandoah while soaking in the thermal pools
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"Thanks so much Kerry Kriger and Chelsea Carson for setting up an ecotour that I couldn't say no to and that I'll never forget!!! This has been the best month of my life! :) My heart is so full from this trip! I'm anxious and sad about going back home. But I'm also very inspired and excited about what the future may hold for myself and save the frogs! I look forward to helping the frogs by helping you guys in any way that I can."

-- Jessica Scrivener

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June 19, 2016:
Having dinner with the very happy participants of the inaugural SAVE THE FROGS! Ecuador Ecotour, in Papallacta after three amazing days of whitewater rafting, tubing, poison dart frogs, squirrel monkeys, tropical fruit juice, incredible Amazonian food, thermal pools, water snakes, scorpions, rescuing wounded ocelots, waterfalls, yoga, bamboo flute and unforgettable experiences. Nine days more to come!
-- Dr. Kerry Kriger, journal entry

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"Thank you for the frogging trip of a lifetime to Ecuador, Kerry and Chelsea!!"

-- Choti Singh, SAVE THE FROGS! Belize, Ecuador & Costa Rica Ecotourist

Rio Quijos

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"Thank you for an amazing SAVE THE FROGS!! ecotour in Ecuador."

-- Deborah Blake Dempsey

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Quito

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Teleferico Hike

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Thanks so much Kerry Kriger and Chelsea Carson for setting up an ecotour that I couldn't say no to and that I'll never forget!!! This has been the best month of my life! :)"
-- Jessica Scrivener

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Villa Da Fiore

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Laguna Cuicocha

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El Pahuma

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