What a Day! The national park provided us with quite the adventure. In the morning, we got on a 50 cent bus from where we are staying to the park entrance and then paid the $10(!) entrance fee. Bag was packed with water, granola bars and a banana. Keen to hike!
Within the park there are several paths to different destinations. The first path we followed eventually lead us to a beautiful waterfall. The path became less and less obvious as we got further into the jungle and the crowds thinned out. By the time we reached the waterfall we were the only ones there.
We got back on the main “road” through the park and were stopped by the crowds. Their guide had caught sight of a sloth hanging out in the trees. We probably would not have noticed if their guide had not pointed it out. That is the cheaper way of spotting wildlife!
Up in the trees we saw this weird animal that I had never seen before, a three-toed sloth. They have a slow metabolism and move very slowly – or simply hang out. Once a week they venture down to the ground to do what we all have to do. Once a week. Wouldn’t that be something?
I am not sure if they are a common sighting or not, but a little bit down the “road” we came across another sloth. It was slooooowly making it’s way across a powerline. Every ten “steps” or so it would slowly swing around before it kept going. Some people walked by, snapped a photo or two and walked on. I kept thinking: “I wonder what it’ll do when it gets to the end of the powerline.” We stayed while Kyler was snapping away, I expected it to graciously swing itself around and move over to one of the nearby trees. Shockingly, the sloth (that we had somewhat gotten to know) touched the parts of the electrical pole you do-not-want-to-touch. Zzzzzzzssssszzzzzzzz. Zzzzzzzzssssssszzzzzzzzzzzzzz. With the little bit of life it had left it tried to save itself. Again, Zzzzzzzzzzzsssssssssszzzzzzzzzzz. The sloth got completely fried. It was the saddest thing I have seen in a long time. From one second to another, it was dead. Because humans feel like they need electricity within a national park this peaceful creature had to die.
It took a little while to get over the incident. It was intense and made me really quite sad. We kept walking and got on the next trail away from the “road” with the powerline. Back to nature, more on the animals’ premise. The path took us up above sea level and the prize at the end was a stunning view!
On the way back from the viewpoint we were completely on our own and suddenly found ourselves in the middle of a whole pack of monkeys! They were all around us. We stood still as they closed in around us. One curious George came closer than the others. It ate a bit of a leaf on one side of the path, looked, crossed and nibbled on a leaf on the other side. Leaves were falling and trees were swaying as monkeys from further away came closer to us. Ironically, I was eating a banana at the time. You know, monkeys like bananas. After a while of being surrounded by monkeys, I did not feel comfertable holding the banana and kindly asked Kyler to handle it. We finished it, wrapped up the banana peel and made our way out of the monkey pack.
The monkey experience was really fun. We really found a group where we belong. They way monkeys act and move, along with their facial expressions to show emotions, is shockingly similar to human beings. I am not sure who is more advanced.
We kept on hiking and came across a few other animals. Some can be hard to spot. Some are less shy. Biggest surprise? Seeing a deer in Costa Rica!
These were the last two monkeys that were spotted.