Pantanal Wildlife Trail São Joaquim Adventure Trail

São Joaquim Adventure Trail

Guest Comments

Andrea and Detlef Lock The Locks at the Avencal waterfall

Detlef and Andrea Lock

Oberhausen (Germany)


Who has been looking for the great freedom in the US, has never been to Brazil. After having been about 4 times on horse back trails in Arizona I wanted to experience a tropical environment. This is how we arrived at with Peter and his partner Elvio, in Santa Catarina, Brazil.


We were very lucky, as we have been invited to a rodeo that happened to take place in Urubici on the weekend we arrived there. The competing vaqueiros (cowboys) are to rope in cattle on a track. The lasso however may not slide down over the cattle's head but must stay fix over the cattle's horns only. A extremely difficult exercise. This colorful event with the vaqueiros concentrated and tense when their turn arrived and the locals their welcoming us with utmost kindness, made us looking forward with eager anticipation for our ride, that started early next day. We immersed nearly immediately into the green of exuberant vegetation. A steep ascent, passing by bamboo, giant ferns, araucaria pine forest and uncountable subtropical flowers and plants, lead us to a wonderful lookout. From here we overlooked a see of araucaria pine forest, high field pastures and a waterfall, where we would rest for lunch, a couple of hours later. The performance of the horses this very first day was absolutely stunning.


Also, on the next day, our mounts managed masterly the uphill and downhill, and there were lots of it. Again we rode through these magnificent araucaria pine forests and other exotic trees that were heavily occupied by bromeliads and orchids. The old man´s beard trees let your imagination run loose…. What a landscape....!


Through araukaria forests Great views

On the third day we horses changed. We could see that the animals were treated with care. Again the landscape changed constantly. Now we rode on hilly grasslands already on the high camps. While riding on, we met a small herd of horses that were running loose on the range. There watched and circled us curiously. A bit later we drove some cattle to a nearby fazenda. Since we still wear our hats from Arizona, we got the real cowboy feeling right here in the deep Brazilian backcountry. Suddenly we were covered in thick layers of fog which added a mysterious aspect to the overwhelming mountain panorama. We probably missed another spectacular outlook over the canyons, because of the fog, but this has been still another thrilling day.


Not different were the days ahead. Again, we saw constantly changing vegetation and scenery. From to mountain tops that we had climbed with our brave horses, which seemed to have converted to goats, we head great views over the wide open lands and the untouched nature. We enjoyed every minute of this ride.


We will not miss to mention the delicious meals prepared by Rosi and Salete, sweetening this holiday week for us. There was also the hospitality we experienced everywhere on the fazendas – despite our language problem. But, we had always Peter at hand who would translate for us. Both, Andrea and Myself, we had not expected that this tour would be so overwhelming.


Our thanks go again to Elvio, his wife Rosi and Peter from Riding Brazil. Our best wishes to all the others.


Detlef and Andrea Lock