Saturday, March 01, 2008
One of my favorites views of the Tapajós River is from Belterra, the former Henry Ford rubber tree plantation. The village is located about 15 kilometers from the river, but there is a spectacular view of it and the tropical savanna basin down below from a bluff area known as the "American Village", referring to a strip of land where the few Americans lived during the 1930-1940s. The Tapajós River is nearly 20 kilometers wide at this point! It's so big, it's nice to have almost an aerial view of it from the Planalto (plateau). Among a few dozen symbolic rubber trees on the bluff, there are a few young teak trees. I don't know the origin of these Asiatic trees, but I do know that some lumber companies in the region have experimented with them at their reforestation sites. Aside from producing one of the best known woods in the world, teak also grows these gigantic leaves, one which I hold in the image. The picture was taken yesterday on a tour with ten visitors from Sweden.