Tuesday, March 9, 2010

San gerardo de dota (in Los Quetzales National Park)

San Gerardo is a cloud forest about an hour and a half from San José. It is at 2500 meters (8250 feet) elevation, so you are in the clouds a lot of the time. There was an amazing viewover the mountains and it was made even better because one side of our cabin was mostly glass. Apparently there are tapirs, but we didn’t see any while we were there. There is a type of bamboo that has what looks like clumps of grass growing out of each joint. This is a staple in a tapir’s diet. There was lots of this bamboo, but no tapirs eating it. We went for a walk down to the creek. In some places the ground was springy. This was because a rotting tree got buried and rotting wood is springy. On our way out, we went to see a Quetzal. The males have two tail feathers that are longer than their bodies. They also fly in a funny way, going up and down like a butterfly. There was a nest with babies, but it was in a hollow tree, so you couldn't see the babies. While we were there, the male fed the babies. When he was holding on to the side of the tree with his head in the nest, he blended in well, and would have been easy to miss. Every night, we went to Mimiriam’s Soda (a soda is like a small restaurant in Costa Rica). They gave the four of us five drumsticks, two trout, a bowl of rice, a bowl of beans, a bowl of potatoes, a jug of juice, a plate of tortillas and four stewed peaches, and they gave us this much every night!

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