About this Exhibition...

Ecuador Adventure

Images of Ecuador by Richard McGuire

When I announced my plans to travel to Ecuador in February 2006, the two questions I was asked most by friends and family were: “Why Ecuador?” and “Where’s Ecuador?”

The second of these is easier. Most people know Ecuador is “somewhere in Latin America” and they guess that the people speak Spanish. Those with a little more geographic knowledge know that the name “Ecuador” comes from the Spanish word for “equator,” which gives a pretty good clue to its whereabouts.

Ecuador lies on the equator on the Pacific coast of South America, and much of it is taken up by the highlands of the Andes mountains. Its eastern part is a low-land tropical rainforest that forms the headwaters of the tributaries of the Amazon River. And yes, most people speak Spanish, though a substantial number speak indigenous languages like Quichua as their mother tongue.

“Why Ecuador?” is a harder question. In the 1970s, when I traveled through Central America and into Colombia, I heard many great things about Ecuador, but I ran out of money before I got there. In particular, it has a rich indigenous culture, with some of its inhabitants descended from the Incas, and others from those the Incas conquered. It also has a tremendous variation in flora, fauna and terrain for a country about the size of Colorado or half the size of Saskatchewan – Ecuador is 269,178 square kilometres. Mountains, jungles, tropical lowlands and thousands of species of birds, plants and animals are all found in a very small space.

Ecuador is also an inexpensive travel destination. Except in a few heavy tourist areas such as the Galápagos Islands, a basic clean and comfortable hotel room costs about $10 to $15 a night. It’s also safer than neighbouring Colombia and Peru, both of which have experienced guerrilla wars, and in the case of Colombia, kidnapping for profit and other serious crimes.

Throughout the entire month of February 2006, I visited most regions of Ecuador except the Galápagos and the southern coast. Even for such a small country, however, a month can only offer a brief taste. I visited such colonial cities as Quito and Cuenca, and hiked in some of the national parks – Podocarpus, Cajas, and Cotopaxi. Here the elevations are often very high, like nothing I’ve experienced except in the Himalayas, and it can take a while to become acclimatized to walking in such thin air (often around 4,200 metres or 13,000 feet). I also spent several days hiking in the tropical rainforest of the Oriente, which was a highlight of the trip.

I took nearly 5,000 photographs with a digital Nikon D70 dSLR camera. This exhibition shows just a small representative sample.

Whether you buy or not, please enjoy my photos. I welcome your comments, feedback and inquiries.

Richard McGuire
E-mail: richard@richardmcguire.ca

See also an edited version of Richard McGuire's trip blog with additional photos.

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Richard McGuire plays with a boa known locally as a "mata caballos" (horse killer). His sister thinks he was nuts. This particular snake was in captivity. Some of the anacondas in the region can reach 10 metres (over 30 feet) in length.

Purchase Information

Photos are sold in 8" X 12" format and are mounted on an acid-free board and are matted. The 11" X 14" matt is signed by the photographer.

Photos are digital prints on Fujicolor Crystal Archive Paper, which is reputed to retain its colors longer than most human life spans. These are NOT inkjet prints, which tend to fade in a few years.

Sets of blank greeting cards, each with a genuine 5" X 7" print, are also available. The cards are 8.5" X 5.5" (215.9 X 139.7 mm) and are on beige recycled cardstock. Envelopes included.

For more information about purchasing my pictures, please visit my eBay website.

For more information about the greeting cards, please visit this page.

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