1961, A flight over Amazon forest and over half a century later - the forest has
May 1961 the team reached Santa Cruz in the tropical lowlands of Bolivia.
Santa Cruz was a town of about 50,000 beside the River Piraí, an Amazon
tributary. Roger Tutt, economist and Malcolm McKernan, writer were invited by
Gulf-Bolivia, a petroleum company to visit Caranda-1, a newly discovered oil deposit.
Caranda-1 was in thick forest 46kms northwest of the city and they were taken
in a small plane from the dirt airstrip of San Aurelio. Roger filmed the forest
in Kodachrome colour using an amateur clockwork-wound Bolex 8mm camera. The film
was silent and sound has been added for this version. The route was roughly south
to north of the Google Earth image [right].
Player will show here
Google Earth image of 2004 reveals farmland across the region in Roger's film.
In 1961 the forest was broken only by patches of natural grassland typical of
the savannas in the northern and southern extremes of the Amazon basin. The Guenda
river on the right [E] of the image is a tributary of the Mamoré a major
Amazonian river |
1961 Santa Cruz has grown to a city of more than 1.5 million largely due to
the rich agriculture on cleared forest and the development of natural resources
such as timber and petroleum.. The region was ideal for colonisation and a UN
[NU] project started in 1959 was supporting the Bolivian Government with a plan
to open up the land to the indigenous Aymara and Quechua people from the arid
Andean mountain region in the west. [see Second Project in 'projects']
Roger Tutt, camera Bolex 8mm, Editor, Tony Morrison, Dubbed sound, about 80pc
from The Freesound Project.
Cruz is now Bolivia's largest city.The River Piraí drains north to the
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