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Old 02-28-2013, 10:38 AM   #106
pdedse OP
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Once the bull is let in the ring, "bull fighting" consists of guys running away from the bull and trying to see how close they can get to it. There might be between 5 and up to 30 guys in the ring. Touching the bull, slapping it, waving a hat at it, one guy might actually have a cape and take a few passes. If the bull does run someone down, knock him over, the others immediately run in trying to distract the bull from doing any serious damage.



If the bull is boring / tired, it gets a little electronic "help" from the guy with the white thing in his hand. It's not a sword, but a cattle prod. It does what it's designed to do.



Even the girls get their turn:


Girl on the right below did get knocked down. 10 plus guys came rushing in to her rescue. She was laughing afterwards, dirtier for the experience.


Once the bull is obviously tired and won't do much of anything except stand there, two riders enter the ring and lasso the bull and then using a pulley system pull the bull over to the corral gate and he exits. Then up next is more rodeo style: a young guy of 16 to 20 will do some bull riding. They were on some beautiful beasts:




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Old 02-28-2013, 11:05 AM   #107
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On Tuesday our group of 12 students took the bus about an hour and a half south of S. Isidro to the indigenous Bri-Bri reservation, near Buenos Aires. The idea was to give the students a chance to see another side of CR, probably one of the more marginalized groups within CR. The Bri-Bri receive visitors so the "outside" will better understand their culture and be more receptive to their issues. They charge for the visit and so it does bring in some income as well.



They have a nice tour. For about an hour and a half, don Zacarias explained the basics of their use of medicinal plants, culture and their spriritual world view. He kept it simple while reminding us that this was just a snapshot, that naturally their culture was far too complex to present in a simple visit.


Most of the medicinal plant recipes involved boiling the plant, straining it, using the either the plant leaf as a topical application or the liquid to drink in tea form. Walking through the forest was like going up and down the aisles of a farmacy / drug store.

Showing us how they grind corn on stone platforms...when they do this for real, the stones are huge allowing 10-15 people to grind at the same time, allowing them to talk this and that while doing "chores".




Depending on how well you could mash the corn determined whether or not you could get married. Zacarias said that our students were ready...and that we would eat that day!


They also show us how they separate the rice form the chaff. First you have to pound it to separate the husk.


Then it's sifted so that the breeze blows away the chaff.


They said that everybody does this work, men, women, children.

A couple of students and Ana, one of our instructors from SEPA school, waiting for lunch:


It's here:


I don't get tire of this:

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Old 02-28-2013, 11:25 AM   #108
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After lunch, we had a piñata, cake and music exchange with some of the Bri-Bri children.

Jacob playing for the kids. He's an excellent musician.


Zacarias taught us some Bri-Bri:


Their numbering system depends on what TYPE of thing you're counting. The above is for counting chickens. If you're counting something else, the endings are different. Wow.





Zacarias' grandaughter


Trying to see who gets to go first to take a whack at the piñata:


Watching the kids taking a go at the piñata...


Naturally, once it breaks, children rush in, and then compare each other's loot:


This is Adelita...she spoke with me for a few minutes about her grandchildren. I asked her which ones were hers and she said "todos son míos".





Next up: soccer match against P.Zeledón (San Isidro) and Saprissa (CR's version of the NY Yankees...as a Tico you either love them or hate them).
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Old 02-28-2013, 05:43 PM   #109
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Dang! That's pretty good! Is that English or Spanish? I asked my sis in law and she said it doesn't sound familiar to her. Gracias

Mike told me the name of so many plants / animals / bugs and I didn't have my notebook with me so I lost track after awhile.
That is Latin, the other Latin....there is a wide variety of them, have you found the shampoo plant? or Bastion del rey? They are all part of the same family. You could spend a lifetime learning all the plants, bugs and animals down there.....
You must have good internet, took me a while to catch up, good job-keep it coming! How much longer are you there?
Was the rodeo at the PZ Expo? Did you go to the Expo? Big fiesta!
How about that blue water at Matapalo, it's the rocks. Yes, surf gets good there.
Got some Tico buddies going to ride enduro at Bahia Drake this weekend, wish I was there
For the other guy who asked, yes the road ends at Carate on the South and I believe at the ferry on the North, hiking access only through the park .
Noticing alot of freaks around? The Envision festival is in town.... Burning Man of Costa Rica; http://www.2013.envisionfestival.com/
We rode out by Buenos Aires one day, hot, good cow trails up there and aguas termales tambien...Dole pineapple plantations are a major source of pesticide pollution seeping into the groundwater...
Looks like I'm buying another bike in CR, tuanis mae! Dos años mas y yo vivo full time in PZ
buen viajes!
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Old 03-01-2013, 09:39 AM   #110
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That is Latin, the other Latin....there is a wide variety of them, have you found the shampoo plant? or Bastion del rey? They are all part of the same family. I didn't find these, but agreed, lots to learn. This morning, I met a biologist who has lived here for 10 years. He was with his daughter and telling her the name of every bird that flew by, what they eat, what their habits are. Would love to have that knowledge. You could spend a lifetime learning all the plants, bugs and animals down there.....
You must have good internet, took me a while to catch up, good job-keep it coming! Thanks...the connection isn't that fast, it's just that I have some time each morning...and lots of paciencia
How much longer are you there? Just ONE more week, but the Perlita story may continue because I could be doing this again in July and Jan of 2014.
Was the rodeo at the PZ Expo? Did you go to the Expo? Big fiesta! Yes, the PZ Expo, the last day and a Monday at that, so it was a bit less of big fiesta, but still fun!
How about that blue water at Matapalo, it's the rocks. Yes, surf gets good there. That blue water totally surprised me. Very cool.
Got some Tico buddies going to ride enduro at Bahia Drake this weekend, wish I was there
For the other guy who asked, yes the road ends at Carate on the South and I believe at the ferry on the North, hiking access only through the park .
Noticing alot of freaks around? The Envision festival is in town.... Burning Man of Costa Rica; http://www.2013.envisionfestival.com/ I haven't noticed any, but then riding around PZ I've got my eye open for other kinds of freaks--the ones who drive their cars and "vant to keel me".
We rode out by Buenos Aires one day, hot, good cow trails up there and aguas termales tambien...Dole pineapple plantations are a major source of pesticide pollution seeping into the groundwater...
Looks like I'm buying another bike in CR, tuanis mae! Dos años mas y yo vivo full time in PZ New bike? Compa, los detalles, porfa...Full time...what gives? For me full time might be more like in 10...still neighbors will be neighbors, right?
buen viajes! Igualmente mae, igualmente

See my comments among yours...


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Old 03-01-2013, 10:06 AM   #111
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If there's one "cultural event" that I love "participating" in Latin American countries it's a fútbol match. The love 'em or hate 'em Saprissa were in town and I had to go. Saprissa, as mentioned before, are like the Yankees, the team with the money that wins a lot. From the capital area of San José, Tibas, if memory serves me right, they always have a large following, fans by the hundreds that arrive en masse and nearly take over the opposition's stadium. "La mafia" was how my bro in law referred to them. They only bring trouble, and vandalize if Saprissa happens to lose, so I was told.

I went with don Rafael, neighbor who is interested in my sister in law, Henri, my sis in law's ex, and their son Chris. Interesting mix. We paid 7000 colones each, about $14. We got their early and had the chance to watch the stadium fill and the players warm up.

The Saprissa fans begin to fill up the visitor's side:


Painting the lines with a fresh coat...


Sapissa goalies warming up, guy in the middle was the goalie coach and had a complete routine that he ran them through.


Defenders / midfielders warming up together, strikers / forwards have their own group.


Saprissa's starting 11


The Pérez-Zeledón Guerreros in their blues


Direct kick:


The first half saw the Mónstruo (Saprissa) score in the first five minutes on a header. PZ controlled the rest of the first half, finally tying midway through the second half.

Another shot for PZ



Henri was getting in to it with the Saprissa fans. Every time a team would get a shot off and miss, someone from the opposing team would shout out "¡Qué golazo!" mocking the other team's miss. With the game tied, Saprisa got off a shot that missed and Henri had to shout it out...seconds later.....Saprissa ¡GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOL! 10 minutes didn't give PZ enough time to tie, although they came close. The Saprissa fans were they're frenzied self, but no vandalism...so there was an upside.

Saprissa fans



Henri and Chris


I've never heard so many "hijo de putas" and "maes" in my life. Take away these two phrases and the fans didn't really have that much to say!


I'm always impressed with how fast these guys are! Very fun to watch. Next time, Saprissa...la próxima vez...

The last three days I've gotten up at 4:45am to make it to the office of Chirripó, CR's highest mountain. The first two days I was denied entry, not enough room. Today I was the last one to receive a pass, so this weekend it's off for some hiking. Gracias por acompañarme....

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Old 03-01-2013, 02:32 PM   #112
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Busca youtube por junglemototours, dale duro enduro! gotta live before we die
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Old 03-04-2013, 08:07 AM   #113
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Busca youtube por junglemototours, dale duro enduro! gotta live before we die

I found these two...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TGIPI8tSUCw

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cs4ufBVPpPs

I don't think Perlita will be doing this anytime soon ...although
that road to the ferry at Sierpe was enough of a challenge for me. Your vids show some seriously challenging..."stuff". Very cool.




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Old 03-04-2013, 09:00 AM   #114
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The dry season (el verano) in CR runs from Jan to maybe mid May, so early March is right in the middle of summer. Hardly ever rains...naturally, the days I finally get a pass for Parque Nacional Chirripó, one of my favorite areas of CR, a temporal arrives...a temporal is when a weather front comes in, often lasting for several days and usually implies rain off and on during that time. It started the Friday night, the night before I was set to go, and was supposed to last till today, Monday, the day I was to return. Ni modo...

Started Saturday at 8:00am and was using a brand new pack. My old backpack was over 22 years old and the new one (Oprsey?) was incredibly light and designed perfectly. Caught up with two students from SEPA schoold (not from my group) that were going up as well. Justin and David are 26 and 21 and I'm, well, I'm still under 50 for several more months. They wanted to speak Spanish and so we practiced the whole way up.

Ryand and David


I think it must be the first time in the history of Chirripó that a pair of black Converse "Chuck Taylor's" made it to the top.

David taking his last smoke for 24 hours


That's the peak before el cerro Chirripó, where we eventually want to get to


It's all up...

...except for the one "Cuesta de los Arrepentidos" (hill of those who are sorry they came---loose translation, but it captures the spirit), a cruel down-and-up right before the finish.

Getting there...first view of "los Crestones"...these massive rock formations tower above the Albergues, the dormitory cabins where hikers stay the night(s).


Just finished the Arrepentidos hill...ugh! Ok, I felt every one of the 49 years that I have. I think going up with two young marines took it out of me, going faster than I normally would. David went on ahead, Ryan wanted to practice Spanish so he went at my pace. But I made it, for the 6th time, and was happier than I look in the photo...


Los Crestones...these are much bigger than what they look from down below. Many years ago, I hiked up to the opposite side of them and they are massive...highly recommend if you're in the neighborhood.


We made it to the albergues around 2:30 or 3:00 about 7 hours. Unless it's a really clear day, it make no sense to hike the last 5 kilometers to the cerro (peak), so most folk take a bone-chilling-shower-that-literally-turns-the-skin-blue (if you're of light complexion), eat, and rest up for the next morning, hoping to have a clear morning, see the sunrise from the peak....but this temporal thing was determined to stick around.



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Old 03-04-2013, 09:35 AM   #115
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As usual, didn't sleep much during the night. Saturday night there were some ladies preparing food for a large group and they had some leftovers, so she sold me a huge plate of rice and beans, chicken and "un picadillo" for about $4...ate way too much to sleep well...rained all night, but by 7am things were clearing a little. I've hike to the top (Cerro Chirripó) five times already. As I began the 5K hike towards the peak, it was obvious that the clouds were covering up any vistas. Another trail, "Ventisqueros" led one to another ridge that looked clear. I decided one more time "at the top" wasn't going to trump a better opportunity to actually see something, so I went for the slightly lower hike.

Beginning the Sunday morning hike


Above the tree line, there are still some birds, lizzards, other signs of life.


That's looking back from where one hikes up.


It's windy, misty and cool to cold much of the time up here, so moss does well


About shoulder high bushes are the norm


Wonderful colors are still about


It was clearing up some




Clouds and mist would come and go


Ventisqueros ridge, where I was heading towards


Finally...after a 3K morning hike...this was going to be far enough. The winds practically blew me off the ridge, so I hike down the calm side to take a break.


Different views of the wind swept area, mists coming and going, clearing, covering...winds are all you can hear...someone shouts in the distance, must of cleared up for a few seconds where ever he was.







Hiking back down to the base camp area.




I got back at 10am, and was feeling pretty good. Decided to not spend the second night, partly because there were lots of people going down as well and I thought I could catch a ride with someone back to S.Isidro so that sis in law wouldn't have to come and pick me up. Plus, I had done what I wanted to do, hike a trail I hadn't before.


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Old 03-04-2013, 09:39 AM   #116
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Total Distance?

So how far is it all the way. 8:00 am to 3:00 pm plus a 5k finish the next day. Is it the 21k we talked about before? Sounds like a blast. We plan to take the family backpacking in Colorado early July. That is the plan right now.
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Old 03-04-2013, 09:59 AM   #117
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The nice thing about going back down is that you eat up your food and you don't need as much water, so the pack is considerably lighter. It was nearly 11 by the time I headed out.

My first time to hike this was in 1988. Things were simpler then, there was no problem getting passes, I spent 50 cents to spend the night in Rivas, the albergues were rustic sheds...but time marches on. My bucket list was to climb this 10 times, this was #6 and that "arrepentidos" hill took it to me this time. Will I make it 10? Solo Dios sabe...but I think I'll try again.

The different places to visit and their distances from the base camp.


Saying goodbye to the Crestones


A biologist told me they are called "fence lizzards"...their motabolism is quite slow with the chilly air, easy to catch if one wanted.


About 25 some years ago, the area had a huge forest fire. Over the years, it has been interesting see how the flora has made a comeback. Every year it's more and more green.


Ok, one last look at them...


Hiking down...knees are starting to hurt...aspirin, right now!


The students I hiked up told me later they made it down in 2:45 hours...I took 5. My right knee is thanking me today!


Until the next time...?




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Old 03-04-2013, 10:05 AM   #118
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So how far is it all the way. 8:00 am to 3:00 pm plus a 5k finish the next day. Is it the 21k we talked about before? Sounds like a blast. We plan to take the family backpacking in Colorado early July. That is the plan right now.
From the first entrance, the one where the last Rivas hotel is located, to the base camp is 14 kilometers. From there it's another 5.5 to Cerro Chirripó. But, if you stay in the main town area of Rivas, that adds another 2.5 to 3 kilometers. So the shortest distance is about 19K, as much as 22K. Believe me, your body will thank you if you can began / end the trip as close to the first entrance as possible. I say "first entrance" because the official park entrance is about 3K later.

Good luck with the family hike! You should do this one some day.
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Old 03-04-2013, 10:42 AM   #119
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This pic is like trail porn.... We are going to do some exploring outside the park boundaries next time
Thanks for taking us along, always love seing pictures of parque Chirripo.
I think the vids you posted were someone in Spain? Not me.
Here's a trail near your lote; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V-hRCHcfUHE
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Old 03-05-2013, 07:49 AM   #120
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This pic is like trail porn.... We are going to do some exploring outside the park boundaries next time
Thanks for taking us along, always love seing pictures of parque Chirripo.
I think the vids you posted were someone in Spain? Not me.
Here's a trail near your lote; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V-hRCHcfUHE
I'm beginning to find more and more riding possibilities as time goes on...good! This bike was fine for what I wanted to to do this time, but something with a bit better suspension / off road capability would be cool, but it seemed it was going to cost me about another grand and I just didn't want to spend that much this time.

Don't know how I messed up on the vids, but oh well, the link you sent got me there--muy puravida.


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