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Costa Rica

Join Andrew McLachlan and Jim Piggott in the rainforest of Costa Rica for an incredible opportunity to photograph a plethora of birdlife against beautiful poster-like backgrounds. We will also have opportunities to photograph several species of reptiles and amphibians. Our base camp in a remote rainforest eco-lodge will allow ample time for bird photography, macro sessions with reptiles and amphibians, as well as a river cruise for Herons, Kingfishers, and Caimans. These daily excursions and shooting schedules will be assessed each day and determined based on the current or expected conditions. As a result, there is no formal itinerary for this event. We will take advantage of the conditions to ensure the best possible results during our two half days and four full days of photography. We will also break out into smaller groups for specific sessions to ensure maximum shooting time. We will be doing a lot of photography during this tour and it would be highly recommended to travel with a minimum of two (3 is better) 1 TB external hard drives to back-up each day’s imagery. During the photo tour you may very well created upwards of 20,000 images!

Our photo sessions will include a jungle tour to familiarize yourself with the grounds, one session in a King Vulture photo blind, one hummingbird session with 3 to 4 different species, and a macro session for reptiles and amphibians. There is also an optional multi flash bat photography session available at an additional cost of $30 US (you must provide your own flashes). Throughout each day there will be ample time to photograph the multitude of birdlife that frequently visit the feeding stations around the lodge. For folks that may like a bit of quiet time to themselves the lodge provides canoes at nearby lagoons, if a quiet paddle is to your liking.

The maximum number of participants for this photo tour is 10

All photos on the workshop card were photographed by Jim Piggott during two previous trips.

This photo tour will run from May 16, 2020 to May 23, 2020. Participants will need to arrive in San Jose on May 15, 2020 and be ready depart for the lodge at 8:00 a.m. on May 16, 2020 from the Hampton Inn in San Jose. We recommend that participants book a single night accommodation on May 15 and again on May 23 at the Hampton Inn in San Jose.

Please do note that we have included an early bird special for those registrants that choose to book early. This special will expire at midnight on October 9, 2019.

It is highly recommended that participants purchase trip cancellation insurance as well as medical insurance. You may also want to visit a travel clinic to ensure you are up to date on any vaccinations you may require.

This tour will appeal to participants that have a good understanding of their camera system and will require a minimal amount of assistance in the field. In-the-field image critiques and composition suggestions will be provided during all photo shoots. Mealtime provides a great opportunity to discuss many photographic topics from image processing to your favorite shot of the day.

A detailed description of birdlife that can be seen at the eco-lodge can be sent to participants that may be interested in viewing the potential opportunities.

Photo Tour Fee:

$2250 US Early Bird Special (add $250 US for Single Supplement)

$2500 US (add $250 US for Single Supplement)

Please contact me by clicking here to register for this tour.

Participants will be paired with same sex participants for double occupancy unless you specifically state otherwise or if it is not doable based on the numbers that register.

A non-refundable retainer of $1000 US is due upon registration. A signed waiver of liability must accompany your payment at the time of registration. This will be emailed to interested participants that indicate a desire to register.

Balance owing must be paid by February 1, 2020 otherwise you risk losing your spot to participants on the ‘wait list.’

Once final payment has been made a no refund policy is effect.

What’s Included:

  • 7 nights accommodation
  • All meals at the eco-lodge (dinner on May 16th through to lunch on May 23rd)
  • Transportation to and from eco-lodge
  • 2 half day photo sessions
  • 6 full day photo sessions
  • In-the-field image critique

What’s Not Included:

  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Snacks
  • Insect Repellent
  • Flights to and from San Jose
  • Hotel accommodation on May 15th and May 23rd
  • After visiting tropical rainforest environments myself I do encourage folks to bring along packets of powdered electrolytes (2 for each day) that can be dissolved in a glass of water to replenish what is lost during the heat and humidity of the day.

 

Costa Rica-1

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Small stream in the Cordillera Escalera, Peru
Nikon D800, Laowa 12mm f2.8 Zero D Lens
ISO 100
f16 @ 4 seconds

Over the course of the last few days I have been busy optimizing the image files from my trip to the Cordillera Escalera near Tarapoto, Peru. I created and uploaded of a selection of the imagery into a gallery of its own to my website today. Please click here to view the Peru Gallery. The daily temperatures during the trip were around 34 degrees Celsius with humidity around 80%, which in turn gives us a humidex value of close to 52 degrees Celsius. To say it was hot would be an understatement. In fact, I felt very tired for several days after returning from Peru. Although I drank plenty of water, I believed that my electrolytes might be on the low side, therefore a trip to the pharmacy to buy some electrolytes packets was in order and upon drinking the electrolytes I felt 100% better. On my next trip I will be sure to pack electrolyte packets to replenish what is sweated out during the heat of the day.

Tree Frog (Osteocephalus family) in the Cordillera Escalera, Peru
Nikon D500, Nikon 105mm Micro Lens
ISO 100
f22 @ 1/60 sec
Nikon SB400 Speedlight on a Wimberley F-2 Macro Bracket

Photographically speaking the main subjects I created images of were landscapes and micro fauna. Above is an image of a tree frog from the Osteocephalus family that was encountered during one of our many night-time excursions. Being able to photograph numerous species of frogs within the Amazon rainforest was a fantastic opportunity, especially the Cochran Frog (Rulyrana saxiscandens) an endangered species with a very limited range within Peru’s Cordillera Escalera. I was also fascinated by a large, old growth tree that I discovered during one of the hikes. This tree had another tree that had set root and grabbed hold of it’s massive trunk some time ago, but what really caught my eye was the plethora of orchid roots that covered virtually every inch of the old growth tree.

Root details in the Cordillera Escalera, Peru
Nikon D800, Nikon 24-85mm VR Lens @ 85mm
ISO 100
f16 @ 0.8 sec

Please do remember to click on each of the photos to view the larger, sharper versions and enjoy the new website gallery 🙂

Cochran Frog (Rulyrana saxiscandens),  Cordillera Escalera, Peru
Nikon D500, Nikon 105mm Micro Lens
ISO 100
f22 @ 1/60 sec
Nikon SB400 Speedlight on a Wimberely F-2 Macro Bracket

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