August 3, 2017
We were on a bit of a time crunch now to get to Panama. So, we scooted on down south to Bahia Drake (pronounced DRAH-kay), where we once again met up with our friends on Kini Popo. Drake is on the Osa Peninsula, which has its own weather systems. The books describe the two seasons here as wet, and wetter. It was definitely that…
We headed in towards shore and decided to check out the estuary to see if there was a place to tie up the dinghy rather than go through the surf and do a beach landing. We found an awesome eco-resort with their own dock who were very welcoming and let us tie up. We returned the favor by sitting in their open air bar with some mojitos just as it started pouring rain.
One of the reasons that we wanted to stop at Drake was that Isla Cano is not far off shore and supposed to have spectacular diving. But, as we were approaching Drake from miles offshore, everywhere we looked was green, silty water. Because it is the rainy season, there is so much runoff that the silty, brackish water travels miles from shore and sits on the top of the water column. Concerned that there would not be too much visibility until perhaps we were fifty feet down or so, we nixed paying to go out there. (Dan and Susan eventually went out there after we left, so hopefully we’ll here the water clarity was better than we thought at the time!)
Diving off the table, we decided to see what else we could do in Drake. The little town was great with dirt roads and small outfits offering eco-tours. Mike and Dan disappeared into one of these little shops and came back to tell us that we were signed up for a Canopy Tour the next morning. If you don’t know what a canopy tour is, you are in good company. It is a series of zip lines that take you over the canopy of the rainforest.
The next morning we piled into the back of a pickup that took us down those dirt roads and even through a (shallow) river (apparently the bridge was out), until we arrived at the Corcovado Canopy Tours. Corcovado is a national park of rainforest that covers most of the Osa Peninsula.
Once we were suited up in our helmets, harnesses and gloves, we marched off into the rainforest to ascend the first of THIRTEEN platforms that would take us high above the trees. Mike had the GoPro, so we got some great pictures and video of the four of us flying over the rainforest. It was so much fun, and a great way to see the rainforest from a completely different perspective.
The next day we decided to take some of the trails that began right outside the eco-lodge and headed along the coast into Corcovado. We were doing so much hiking at this point, that a few hours traversing mud and rocks was not all that physically challenging but allowed us to really take in the beauty of our surroundings in nature. I know I’ve said this before, but it is amazing how much healthier a lifestyle we have here on the boat!
We had packed as much into Costa Rica as we could in two months, but we really had to go. We said goodbye to Kini Popo and departed for Golfito. Golfito is the last port of entry in Costa Rica and where we had to check out of the country.
Our sixty mile trip to Golfito was an all day trip, as there was no wind and we were fighting an adverse current. We arrived in Golfito at dusk, just as the rain came pouring down. It was hard to see through the rain, as I stood on the bow looking for hazards and trying to find the anchorage. But, we were able to anchor just fine and get a good night’s sleep.
The next day we set off to provision for our passage to Panama and to see all the officials to check out of the country, as we planned to leave early the next morning. Those plans changed a bit when the immigration official told us we had to come back the next day. But, we got our groceries and filled up with diesel. The forecast (and season) did not look great for wind, but we had to go. Topping up with diesel was an imperative.
After finding the immigration office, customs, the bank (to pay for the exit zarpe) and the port captain the next morning, we finally had our zarpe to leave Costa Rica. We pulled up anchor around noon and departed for the three day journey to Panama! But, more on that next time…