Bensley’s Favorite Seasons
At Shinta Mani Wild and Why
January – February
There is a chill in the dry night air that make sundowners, campfires and massages, on the most northern stone riverbed a delight. Butterfly season is full on and continues through March.
March – May
The Khmer New Year sees low water levels that make many areas more accessible to mountain biking and hiking deeper into the rainforest. This season sees a trickle in the river rise a 1/2 meter and we are grateful for the odd 15 minute showers that cool and refreshes our jungle valley. I love zip-lining in the rain! Our trips out to the Srey ambel estuary on Our 3 yachts; Big Sister, Raging Sister and The Silly Sister!
We sit at the southernmost position of the enormous 2 million hectare Cardamom Forest and her southern catchment area… all the mist, rain, monsoons of this park dances through Shinta Mani Wild. One can witness a torrential outpouring and our 17 intermittent rivers and streams come alive. Trees begin to fruit and that attracts the birds. Some years we our favorite visitors reappear… a herd of wild elephants. The southern stretches of the Tmor Rung River have ample water to facilitate fantastic kayaking for bird watching. The many drongos and kingfishers are just delightful. This a great time for foraging as well. I love to visit the acacia forests to forage for delicious pink mushrooms which a slightly bitter but delicious taste. Try popping the pink mushrooms into an egg white omelette with a mozzarella and red capsicum!
August – October
In our valley we have three major waterfalls that the locals call The Raging Sisters. This is my favorite time of the year as our three Raging Sister Falls bulk up by at least a multiple of ten. Raging Big Sister Falls produces a mountain of mist. The shear power of unbridled water is mesmerizing. While we know that the Pileated Gibbons do not have a preferred mating season, it seems as though this season they are especially vocal in the early mornings. It seems like their calls to establish their territorial boundaries are louder and more serious. Sometimes we take sundowners to the Northern fields where the forests open up to reveal much larger views than our southern jungles. In the rainforest one can find orchid flowers all year round but I have found that this season tends to be the best.
November – December
The cry of the Raging Sisters calms and a great season for swimming in the river begins. At Srey Ambel estuary remote sandy beaches for picnics, and sun worshipers avail themselves. Tulga, our visiting Mongolian fishing guide, is in residence and is on standby for those keen to learn to fly fishing Tenkara style. Lepidopterologist and Head-butler Bong Mac is ready to guide you as this is the beginning of the butterfly season.