November 4, 2012 |
TIKAL NATIONAL PARK, Guatemala - The woman in the shorts shrieked, grabbed her ankle and crumpled to the ground as though she'd been shot. And in a sense she had. "A bullet ant," surmised José Elias, our unflappable guide. "If they sting you, the pain will last 24 hours. Take care. " We left the stricken woman to her friends and plunged deeper into Guatemala's steamy jungle. Birds sang madly, chaotically. Emerald billed toucans alighted in the treetops. The spooky cry of a howler monkey echoed through the forest.
March 31, 2012 |
The reality of the height and speed at which I was traveling didn't hit me until almost halfway through the zip-lining course. Joel Hunt, my 23-year-old guide, told me that the fourth and highest line -- the one I was about to ride -- was known as the most spine-tingling. I quickly found out why. After easing off a wooden platform secured to a Douglas fir, I sailed through a cluster of treetops and then watched as the ground gave way below me. Suddenly, I was 30 stories in the air, hurtling toward a mountain, the oaks and pines and streams that litter the floor of the San Gabriels smirking up at me, the Mojave Desert on my left, Hunt just a tiny, faraway speck on the side of a massive cliff toward which I seemed to be careening at 45 to 65 miles per hour.
February 21, 2012 |
Five days hardly seems long enough to explore Alaska's Prince William Sound, but adventure travel company Greenloons offers a tour that hits the glacier and fiord highlights for those short on time. The trip begins in Anchorage at a bed-and-breakfast that comes with access to hiking and biking along the Tony Knowles Coastal Trail. Then it's off to Whittier and two nights aboard a 65-food yacht to cruise the Barry Arm and visit the Harriman and College fiords, Eaglek Bay and Cascade Falls.
February 10, 2012 |
Deforestation and climate change may sound like familiar concerns to the modern ear. But a team of French scientists is arguing that even 3,000 years ago, humans may have played a role in transforming the Central African rain forest into the savannas we see today. As Bantu farmers expanded south and east into the rain forest in search of fertile agricultural land, they may have created savanna "corridors" that cut into the forest and helped turn that lush landscape into drier grassland, according to a study published online this week in the journal Science.
October 6, 2011 |
It's official: Barbie has broken up with Asia Pulp & Paper Co. Responding to a campaign by environmental activists at Greenpeace, toy giant Mattel Inc., maker of the famed Barbie doll line, announced Wednesday that it would stop buying paper and packaging that the environmental group has linked to rain forest destruction in Indonesia. The El Segundo company said it would tell suppliers to avoid wood fiber from companies "that are known to be involved in deforestation. " Among those companies, Greenpeace said in a statement, is Asia Pulp & Paper.
September 17, 2011 |
Howler monkeys, crocodiles, toucans, parrots and lots of birds star in this 10-day trip to Costa Rica sponsored by the Greater L.A. Zoo Assn. The naturalist-led expedition explores Volcan Poas National Park to learn about active volcanoes, the Monteverde Cloud Forest mountain reserve, Carara National Park on the Pacific Coast and a rain forest at Braulio Carrillo, with an aerial tram that takes you into the tree canopy. A tour of capital city San Jose also is included. When: Costa Rica: Nature's Treasure House runs from Nov. 11-20.