Palo Verde National Park.
Awake at 1:00 am to use newly restored iPad hotspot to do church work.
Up with the sun and hiked up the 4 flights of stairs to wait for the bus to pick up up at 7:00 am. We saw lots more damage from rocks falling in the night.
On the way to our main event, we passed several soccer games and a LOT of sugar fields. We passed El Viejo Mill (Azucarera El Viejo, S.A), a Costa Rican company dedicated to growing sugar cane and sugar production. The company annually produces 50 thousand tons of sugar in the forms of raw, white, and special; by the industrial processing of half a million tonnes of cane grown by over 500 farmers in the Tempisque Basin. The sugar here in Costa Rica goes mainly to the Coca-Cola Company and for producing energy. I was very surprised that there was no rum production like in Barbados and other sugar-growing countries.
After many dirt roads, we stopped at the Palo Verde Restaurant and had juices and coffee while we waited for others to arrive. Since we were going to Palo Verde, I assumed (you know what they say about assuming!) we were close to beginning our trip. Well, no. Back on the busses. More narrow dirt roads.
Finally, we got to the Temique River and into our small boat. One of the women getting in commented to Michael that she had sat behind him in the plane from New York. Small world.
We saw lots of white-faced capuchin monkeys – several came right inside the boat. The Capuchin monkey is named after the order of Capuchin friars – the cowls of these friars closely resemble the monkey’s head coloration. I’ll bet those friars are happy to hear this!
We saw lots and lots of iguanas of various colors, in the trees, on the ground.
We also saw something that looked like a hawk but were told it was a black vulture. We also saw blue heron, egrets, and of course, crocodiles. The crocks saw we were there and slowly circled our boat.
In the photos below, the guide is showing us a huge grasshopper with red underwings.
After our boat tour, we went back to the Palo Verde Restaurant for what is called a “tipical meal”. We had Casados (black beans and rice) with chicken, beef, salad, fried plantains, white cheese and corn tortilla. Casado, the name referring to the eternal “marriage” of the beans and rice.
A l-o-n-g bus ride and we were home again, ready to rest up for the next day!
We ended going out to breakfast here at Pueblo Real and I took the pictures of the flowers afterwards.
After exchanging our reservations since Michael can’t join us, we ended up going to Rainmaker Rain Forest. That’s a privately owned rain forest down a long gravel road.
On that road I took the picture of the cow/bull or whatever it was with the huge buffalo hump.
True to it’s name, it was pouring when we got to rainmaker. We decided to go inside anyway.
Because it was raining, we had to take most of our pictures with a waterproof camera, old-style that will need to be developed before uploading.
There was lots of climbing, suspension bridges, slippery places, rain. What fun!
I was pretty ok until we saw the red band around the tree that meant a worker had spotted a snake in it that morning. I don’t know if the snake has to move the band when he moves.
Tom went very quickly by the tree and didn’t see the snake. I looked into the tree and did see it. With the help of Wikipedia and google I identified it as a green vine snake when we got back. It’s venom was “serious cut not lethal” to humans.
After I saw him, what little adrenaline I have got depleted very fast and I had some trouble finishing the walk. This was the day (of course!) that I didn’t bring any extra cortisone.
Finally got home and took the cortef and Tom went back out for gas.
After he got back we got phone calls from our Thrifty friends who were off somewhere, in the rain, getting dark out…with a flat tire. Tom gave them phone numbers of the office here, Thrifty and others. He was thinking of trying to find them but they somehow got help from someone closer to the scene.
We went out to dinner and major rains, thunder and lightning. This is an open-ish restaurant so we had rain blowing in…and a crab wandered through.
Finally, we figured it was time to go and the ice restaurant folks lent us an umbrella.
Time to head to bed. Out early tomorrow for a sail/snorkel/lunch trip.
This is not my video but it’s a good one of where we were today.