Sunday, August 12, 2018

Costa Rica Adventure - Day 4

[Composed 8/2/2018]

Yesterday's focus was on the jungle, while today was all about the nearby looming peak. And best of all, this was no ordinary mountain, but a real volcano! Today we tackled the 1968 Arenal Volcano Trail, so named because it tours the area impacted by the 1968 eruption of Volcan Arenal.

There are two trails in the area, and I naturally insisted we do the longer of the two. This turned out to be a smart move, as it let us see a number of distinct ecological zones, from thick jungle to lava scarred terrain. At only 4.7 kilometers, it doesn't sound that long, though there's quite a bit of steep uphill. The kids came through the hike with flying colors, though D. definitely lead the way, not complaining once.

We saw some interesting wildlife, including lizards, butterflies and a grumpy looking frog. T.'s big find was a Central American Montane Tiger Beetle; it's a speedy little bug, so grabbing pictures of him (or her?) were harder than you'd expect.

The weather truly cooperated today, giving us pleasant sunshine the whole way and even letting the clouds part a bit when we had views of the volcano's summit. Once the hike was finished, it started to rain a bit and by the time we got home it was coming down in buckets.

We had planned to do a hot spring in the afternoon, but between how tired we were and the rain, we were fine with swimming in our own pool. The water was a bit cold for my taste, but didn't slow the kids down one bit.

After hot dogs and hamburgers for dinner, everyone hit the sack early (8:30pm!). Climbing volcanoes isn't easy. And besides, tomorrow we say goodbye to La Fortuna and hello to Jaco Beach. Big adventures ahead!

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