After a great hike to the volcanic lake last weekend, we decide to return to Moca and hike to the waterfalls. Early Saturday morning, two colleagues and I load-up into the Hi-Lux and head south towards Moca. The drive is typical for a Saturday morning. Many of the roadside fruit and vegetable stands are full of papayas, pineapples, hot peppers and even a few antelopes. We pass numerous women with large baskets on their backs, overflowing with bananas and yucca roots, machetes in hand and often bundled goods on their heads, with of course, children in tow. They are delivering their goods to a local fruit stand in anticipation of the heavy vehicle traffic that will pass all day long. An unofficial economy flourishes along the road between Malabo and Luba, buyers and sellers meet all day long to make deals. After the hour and a half drive, we arrive in Moca and stop first at the Moca Biodiversity Protection Program offices to visit our friends and pick up our guide for the hike. It’s always a good idea to take a local guide along with you on hikes in Moca, just in case….. Carlos is our guide for the day. This time the first leg of our hike we will be going down a few thousand feet to a waterfall vista, then we will climb up on the way back to town. The old saying “what goes up, must come down” working in reverse today. The hike begins in a pasture, complete with Brahma cattle and wild horses and ends at the beautiful view-point, overlooking a deep ravine. On the far side of the ravine, two beautiful waterfalls bounce straight down the cliff-face for at least 500 feet, like two silver necklaces shimmering in the sunlight. The majority of the hike is through thick tropical rainforest, Carlos leads the way. He clears our narrow path of over-hanging vegetation with his machete as he slowly walks along. I have learned a new saying here in Africa, where we would say someone is “up a creek without a paddle…” I think here in Africa, one could appropriately say…”in the forest without a machete…” Everyone always has a machete in the forest here in Equatorial Guinea! A very useful tool indeed! A few students from the Biodiversity center have joined us on the hike, they pause briefly to catch insects and place them into their alcohol filled test tubes, for further investigation back at the Center. We cross a few small, crystal clear rivers during our descent. We use the rocks, like a frog uses lilly pads, to hop our way across the rivers. After about an hour of switchbacks and a few slippery steep sections of trail, we reach our vista-point! Wow…what a beautiful view, it was well worth the sweat to reach this point. The weather cooperated and the foggy mist that often obscures the waterfalls on the other side of the ravine lifted long enough for us to take a few pictures.