Monday, July 20, 2015

Day 2- Cerro Chato Hike

We woke up bright and early.   We were in the restaurant by 7am for breakfast fueling up for our big hike up Cerro Chato Volcano.  We grabbed our map from the front desk and headed out by 8am.
We walked across the hanging bridge, past the pool, and came upon this sign.
In no time we were exploring new territory.
It was so awesome to be out with the kids.  Every which way we turned our heads there was such beauty.
Even the horses seemed to appreciate the beauty and abundance of fresh, sweet grass.

On the way up to the volcano we passed this stream.  The water was so low that we were able to walk down under the bridge.

Jumping ahead, I wanted to show you the same creek (on the walk back) after it had been raining for an hour.

Drew was one of the leaders on the hike.

This creek also became a powerful, raging river during the downpour we experienced on our hike down.

From the base of the volcano all the way to the top and back down to the lagoon, the hiking trail looked like this.

It was a strenuous hike, one of the hardest things I have ever done, but totally energizing. I'd do it again in a heartbeat.

The kids found some vines half way up the mountain.  We stopped to swing.  I of course was worried about on of them getting hurt.

 Wouldn't you have freaked out if this happened to one of your kids?

For some reason I thought that once we were at the top of the volcano, it would be easier to walk down to the lagoon.  I was wrong.  The hike down was even harder than the hike up.  But we made it.
And it was worth it.

In all of my research during the trip planning, I learned that 50% of people swim in the lagoon, while the other 50% think it is unsafe because of potential bad minerals in the water.
We decided that we didn't come all this way to only look at the water-- so we dived in!

As we dried off and put back on our shoes, John and Annalyn each found a leech on them.
(Oh the memories.)

On the hike back up to the top, I wondered if it would rain.  About ten minutes later, we found ourselves in a rain forest downpour.

The rain wasn't cold and in fact, it made our hike back down all the more exciting. 

All the way back to our hotel we goofed off and took our time.  It was exactly what we had hoped for on our trip and so much more.

Anna found this hairy, colorful caterpillar and rescued it from a ditch.
 The hike ended up being every bit of the four hours it promised it would be and we arrived back at the lodge around 1pm.  We spent the rest of the day hanging out in the pool and hot tub.  We had a nice time talking with other families also there on vacation.
 That night we enjoyed a nice buffet dinner.

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