Costa Rica update #3

Hey guys, to follow up for Nina’s article I will start with the Chirripo Atlantico. This river is probably the best river in Costa Rica! The trip started at 5 am. We packed the cars and left to the Mountain called Chirripo in the Chirripo National Park and Indian reservation. The way to the river was already exhausting. I was driving 3 hours on the extreme difficult off road and I was thinking it couldn’t be worst. Well it was! We had two 4x4 cars and the second car stacked in first huge muddy uphill. So we had to unpack it, leave it there and pack 7 boats and 8 persons to the first one. It did work, but at the second hill we stacked again and the car died. It just was too much for it. Fortunately we had a driver who is an ambulance driver for this part of country and he, I don't know how, just managed to come up and than back down too. The road was a really big adventure and we didn't start yet. When we arrived, we figured out that it is in the biggest canyon of Central America. No signal, no way for rescue. There were no people just one family of Indians. I started to be a bit nervous. There could be many things, which might go wrong, and we would be pretty much in big mess. So we packed our gear for a multi day trip and put it into the water. I was just looking on Nina when we left her there with the driver and the car and hoped that nothing will happen to us or to her. 

After the first curve we had to scout. I went out, walking on the stones and almost stepped on a snake. It was not a good feeling to know that there are many poison snakes and difficult rapids to run and no way for rescue. The river was awesome, many class 5 and 4 rapids and there were almost no places with flat water. We kayaked 6 hours on the water with only small brakes to eat. We packed just basic thinks with us because we didn’t want heavy boats in difficult white water. The river in the steep canyon is probably the most beautiful one there. Unfortunately at the end of the day Bartosz from Poland dislocated his shoulder. Fortunately it jumped back in straight away. We couldn't run the river anymore so we had to camp at the riverbank. We did set up the tarpaulin and fire and cooked until it gets dark. Dark in the jungle is a funny feeling. I mean we had fire and everything, but still we are living in the city so than when you are actually there it gets a bit scary during the night. We turned the flash light to the forest and could see all those eyes watching us.

Next day we had to wake up very soon, because we didn't had any idea if Bartosz will be able to run the river. The back up plan was, that he would portage the difficult parts and kayak the easy stuff. We have been lucky that he really could do that. He probably bites himself a lot into the thong by kayaking down with so much pain in the shoulder. The rest of the river was also 3-5(6) and no flat parts, which means full on kayaking down for more than 8 hours + portaging some of the super difficult ones. 

When we finished, all of us were tired, but we all had this nice unspeakable feeling. It’s great to have such a good friend and do so great stuff!

The Chirripo Atlantico was my last river in Costa Rica. We gave back our rented boats and left for the Caribbean ocean for surfing and the jungle tree house adventure and than home, back to a cold and normal life.