We woke up to the flashing of sheet lightening – I thought for a moment that my eyes were playing up big time! Then the almost reassuring sound of heavy rain, and as the storm approached, joined in with the sound of thunder in the distance.
We followed the plan of getting up at seven for breakfast, more to keep our bodies used to a certain routine rather than from a burning desire to be out there looking for plants – the usual side roads would be near on impassable and the natural light inadequate for good photography.
Things had eased up a bit by 9:30 and we decided to get on the road and get ourselves to stop #1 of three planned for today’s easy day with all the stops along the paved road.
S1448 was a for Cereus hildmannianus, Frailea perumbilicata (not seen by most of the group, but Cliff, who had explored farther to our left found a few), Parodia (Notocactus) buiningii (a first for me) and P. sellowii, P. mammulosa plus P. ottonis completed the set here.
At S1449 we were treated to Frailea phaeodisca, looking good despite the far from ideal light conditions, Gymnocalycium urugayense, looking flat half buried in the ground if you could find them in the grass, Parodia buiningii, P. mammulosa and P. ottonis (or was it glaucina with curved rather than straight spines?)
S1450 completed today’s cactus stops with the best P. buiningii of the day, as they had dried by now and the light had greatly improved. Again they were joined by P. mammulosa and P. oxycostata (P. glaucina or P. ottonis?)
We wasted no time finding a hotel in Quarai and found very comfortable lodgings at hotel Fenic (www.hotelfenic.com.br) although if you plan to stay there, ask for a room at the back rather than one overlooking the 24 hour petrol station which was noisy.
A quick excursion into town saw me acquire a gaucho hat in the local style – flat with a wide rim – and a belt to match, both probably destined for ornamental use when I get home.