Whitewater Rafting & Relaxing on the Pacuare River, Costa Rica
Let’s pick up where we left off, shall we? The white water rafting down the Pacuare River was good times and we battled through class II-III rapids, not that big a deal and a pretty easy breezy day. We also hiked to a waterfall which was alright, would have been better if I had shoes and not flip flops. It was a mass of random boulders and debris from what you can tell are serious floods, despite being in the rainy season the water levels were low and the climb was long but worth it.
We arrived at the waterfalls and they were pretty sweet, my friend “Rancheros” attempted a front flip off this ledge to mimic one of the guides. Sure enough he didn’t calculate that being 6”4 he needed more air and landed flat on his back, you could hear the SMACK from SPACE and couldn’t help but laugh uncontrollably. To add insult to injury he also ripped his bathing suit in the crotch area. Perhaps I’ll process the video one day but for now I’m relaxing in paradise and let us continue this story I’ve started…
It began to pour torrential styles as we left the waterfall and you could see a thick mist emanating from the tree top canopy. What beauty, it is unlike anything I’ve ever seen. After the waterfall we cruised along the river as the bow crashed into rapids. I’ve been in a rainforest before but nothing like this, ever. It’s as though the sides of the river are sheer cliffs and the forest is guarded by an impenetrable layer of trees that tower over all making you realize just how small and insignificant you really are to the whole ecosystem we call earth.
There are several camps in the area that range from rustic to ridiculously awesome, luckily we’ve found ourselves in the latter which is sweet considering I came in blind as usual. To make matters even more magnificent, found out we’d be here for two nights. I’m at the Pacuare Lodge as I mentioned earlier and this is truly a unique place situated in a very remote and special part of a small and sublime country called Costa Rica. Staying in this type of accommodation has opened my eyes to the many alternatives besides traditional hostels, guesthouses and hotels. Perhaps it´s time to dig deeper and investigate timeshare rentals or a private villa in some remote locations?
The lodge was founded in 1993 with the original purchase of 12 hecatres of land. The purpose was to preserve this delicate and delightful rainforest while providing jobs for the local inhabitants. It was also meant to treasure and respect the local way of life and all the idiosyncrasies attached to it. Part of all the proceeds go towards purchasing further tracks of land in this off the beaten track location; as of 2008 they had managed to accumulate and protect 350 hecatres aka over 861 acres. In case you’re curious, 861 acres is a colossal chunk of land, behemoth or gigantic would also work.
The guides from the company Adventuras Natureles also work for the lodge and double as the wait staff. I’ve never received better service anywhere in my travels, the type of place where there is literally two staff for every soul lucky enough to be staying the night. The food is exquisite and so fresh I won’t even attempt at further describing it, I’m speechless and stuffed. The photo below is of this jungle tomato that turns into the lovely juice pictured. The dessert was part of lunch and naturally there were no leftovers, let alone anything left on the plate.
The rooms have no power and are built with care and filled with character. It vaguely reminds me of another lovely lodge I stayed in South Africa, only there are no deadly animals around so instead of thick glass it’s a small screen that separates you from the jungle. The only power is in the main lodge from a generator that is run part of the day and yes despite having no cell signal, they have wifi. I’m in a river view cottage and in front of me is a rainforest wall as tall as any skyscraper I’ve ever seen.
I used to think coral reefs were awesome and thought such abundance of life only existed in the sea. There are so many brilliant birds with techno like colors you’d think they were painted for some late 1990’s rave. If you let your mind go still you’ll be able to enter their world if only for a moment until a thought interrupts you and cuts the connection to the infinite. It’s seriously like a coral reef but instead of fish it’s small birds and insects that are no less significant to the whole than you or I.
Despite the fact that there are insects the size of a subway sandwich floating around, I’ve only been bitten once as though they are at peace in this sanctuary of sorts. Besides the whitewater rafting there are countless other activities and lots of guests tend to stay a week or so. I’m so relaxed sitting on the bed staring at the wall of vegetation across the river with a blank stare and a surreal smile that a week could quickly mutate into months here and I wouldn’t even notice or care.
I woke up early this morning (4:35) to make a time lapse that turned out terrible and managed to get all the work I had planned in the office; big thanks to Victoria who was kind enough to help me from Spain. I’m going to continue sinking into these sheets until dinner which should be divine as I’ve opted for the beef tenderloin which sounds terrific. Tomorrow a character known simply as “Rancheros” and I are out of here via class III-IV rapids and can’t say I’m ready but when is anyone ever ready to end a good thing?
I’m here with the Costa Rica “Gift of Happiness” and yes, it’s working!
P.S: Check out yesterday’s update for a photo of the room.
P.P.S: Some photos from “Rancheros” with this waterproof fiji camera I’m buying off him.