feedback on Rockjumper tours

To: birding-aus <>
Subject: feedback on Rockjumper tours
From: Vader Willem Jan Marinus <>
Date: Tue, 3 Jan 2012 08:16:44 +0000
In my previous mail this may not have been made sufficiently clear; but of 
course I agree absolutely that tour leaders should always keep to the 
'promised' and scheduled programme, and not cut out certain harder daytrips 
because of the wishes of part of the participants. The trip should always 
follow the scheduled programme, and if some participants are not up to that, 
they can stay at the hotel that day. When we were in Madagascar with 
Rockjumpers, almost the opposite happened: the leader offered an extra 
extension of a day trip, which involved a steep and prolonged climb, and here 
only the couple that was fittest---and the best birders---took part, while the 
other participants--me too- returned to the lodge on the Masoala peninsula.

The various tour companies almost always in their prospects have an indication 
of the grade of difficulty of the tour and ask participants to make sure they 
are up to that. It seems technically complicated, however, for them to have any 
control that the participants are in fact as fit as they claim to be; many 
people tend to overestimate their own fitness. Personally I feel that certain 
trips (PNG, Philippines, maybe Surinam) are already beyond my capacities, 
although until now I have had no particular difficulties to follow the trips I 
have been on, including Madagascar and bhutan. And I still maintain that it is 
for people like me that these trips probably yield optimal enjoyment and 
results; there are other outlets for the most dedicated and accomplished 

Happy New Year to all!

                                                                     Wim Vader, 
Tromsø Museum

Tromsø, Norway


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