The wildlife here has been magnificent and so has our luck for being in the right place at the right time. It has been a truly memorable family vacation and as much as we enjoyed Costa Rica, Jeanine and I both enjoyed the way the children interacted with each other absent their respective friends and electronic distractions. We count our many blessings this year and wish all of our friends and family a very healthy, happy, and prosperous new year.

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This encounter was a good reminder that you need to exercise caution when exploring areas that are new to you. We could not help wondering what kept so many crocodiles so well nourished. Unfortunately we did not have the time to remain and discover the answer.

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We literally stumbled on this group of crocodiles as we headed for the airport. Click the photo to make it larger and see how many you can find in the photo.

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It is the last day of the year and also our last day in Costa Rica. We say good by to the Pacific Ocean and gather sand to remind us of the adventure.

 

 

It was a most enjoyable day for me with the kids. Maya had a marvelous first experience on white water and the boys showed some real skill in their paddling responsibilities. After a quick change into dry clothing we enjoyed a delicious meal at the take out point.

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Nico switched places with Kyle at the front of the raft for the final third of the trip. Both boys did a great job of propelling the boat allowing our guide at the rear to set us up nicely for each rapid. Maya and Nico both opted to jump into the river on the flat water but no one fell out of the raft during the rough water.

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Shortly after starting a gentle and warm rain began to fall. This was in nice contrast to the angry and cold water of the river.

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The river was a nice combination of Class II and III rapids with interspersed flat water affording an opportunity to enjoy the surrounding jungle. Initially Maya opted to take a low position in the raft and not to paddle. By the end of the 13km run she was paddling like a pro and asking for more white water.

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While waiting for the rafts to be readied, Maya and a new friend attempt to catch tadpoles.

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As bad as the roads are, the bridges are another story all together. We crossed this last one on foot and got a good look at the Savegre River which at this point seems quite well behaved.

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During our transit to the put in point the guide described the day as Class V roads leading to Class III rapids. We traversed what can loosely be called roads that would terrify most mountain goats. When the white truck pictured here attempted to pass us on the single lane road, it lost traction, slid backwards, and nearly went over the cliff which is obscured here by vegetation. We off-loaded our bus which then pulled the disabled vehicle off the ledge with a chain. It became very clear to me that our driver and equipment was superior to other operators and was thankful we had chosen well.

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Today I took the kids white water rafting while Jeanine enjoyed the day on her own. You may recall that our last such adventure included a flipped raft which left Jeanine convinced this was not the activity for her.

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It was back to Quepos and another wonderful sunset as we gather ingredients for a home cooked pasta dinner.

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I found these robin egg sized clay pots an irresistable photographic subject.

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After returning from the canopy tour we spent some time shopping by the beach in Manuel Antonio. In addition to the standard tourist fare, we discovered many beautiful objects fashioned by local artists.

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