Thursday, 17 March 2011

Alpha Romeo 4 - visit 'The Crab'

Word and pictures: Jonny McCarthy

Alpha Romeo 4 are following fast on the heels of expedition 11C’s first ‘Alpha 4’ group in the development and conservation of the La Cangreja National Park.

No its not the local Turrialba football team... its Alpha Romeo 4!
La Cangreja is a beautiful national park which owes its name to the striking 1,305 metre peak Cerro Cangreja (it looks like a giant crab!). Raleigh has undertaken a huge number of projects here and Alpha Romeo 4 were looking forward to marking their stamp on the area park! The park has suffered various problems from deforestation and poaching in the area.

Venturer Teri looks out over her new home for the next three weeks

When we arrived we were greeted by Don Bolivar and four of the rangers that help protect La Cangreja. We were treated to a slide show of all the important work that Raleigh has achieved in the past, but also, a run down on all the poisonous snakes and spiders to keep our eyes out for! The rangers explained to us the work we would be expected to do, and showed us some of the previous work which had been done by Raleigh.

Work on the trail has been swift but rewarding. Many areas of the path need ditches and drainage systems to help preserve the paths. Seeing how quickly the paths can soon become overgrown and lost without regular attention is just amazing! We have also had the opportunity to help clean up the ‘Raleigh Trail’ which a previous expedition helped to build. The aim of the trail is to allow disabled access to the National Park, whilst still being able to enjoy the jungle environment and fabulous views from the viewing platform!

Cutting their way through the forest in style!
Day 2 we began building our jungle camp. The thought of building ‘basher beds’ from bamboo, building our own kitchen, lounge and ‘long-drop’ (toilet) was all very exciting! Once we had set up all the important parts of the camp (the basher beds and waterproof coverings!) we broke the group up by allocating two people to stay back to help make improvement on our camp, whilst the rest of the group headed off to work. The first task in hand was to clear large areas of the National Parks network of trails. Poaching in the park is a major threat to the wildlife in La Cangreja, and the rangers have round the clock patrols to help ward off any unscrupulous poachers!

Before arriving, I never fully understood the importance an area like La Cangreja can have on the community. Thousands of people rely on the National Park to provide them with clean, safe drinking water. Previous generations of deforestation have caused the water flow of one river in the zone, the Rio Negro, to shrink three times in size from what it was just 30 years ago!

Alpha Romeo 4 is proud and honoured to be part of a great ‘Raleigh Legacy’ helping La Cangreja to flourish for a lifetime to come.


  1. For Jakhya Rahman Alpha Romeo 2

    Hey Jaxxy!

    Incubus just came on my ipod so thought I'd drop you a message :) I've had the most amazing and stressful at work yet! Youth Star had a Conference on Gender Violence Prevention which felt like a mini UN Conference for me, I was so honoured to be a part of it. Even got to meet the Minister of Women's Affairs & a lot of UN reps, loved it! The workload building up to the conference & post conference was overwhelming though.

    Consequently had a wild St. Paddys celebration at this Irish Pub along the Phnom Penh riverfront-let's just say I was late for work lol.

    I miss talking to you motor mouth! I now have wifi at home so message me when you finally come back to civilization & we'll have a good old chat.

    Hope you've seen some amazing volcanoes out there :::)

    Lots of love from your Twisted Sister xxxxxxx

  2. To Caroline Murray Alpha Romeo 4 from mum and dad

    Hey! What a change to see you looking so great and grinning! That lookout point looks awesome! What memories you will have. Must say I agree with you conditioner for long hair is a must!! Bet you can't wait for the next long shower!!! We just got your letter from Nicaraugua yesterday (17th March). Thank goodness we have spoken since! All well here waiting for Will next weekend (27th). Weather has really perked up with some lovely warm days though it is grey today (Friday 18th). Oskat is fine and it will be interesting to see how he responds when he sees you! Looking forward to the next contact if you can but until then keep going girl and keep having fun. One thing you wont be frightened of will be our spiders this autumn!!! lots of love munchkin mum and dad and your favorite ginger friend('I don't like it when you are gone') xxxxxxxx

  3. Want to say hello to Eliana! And tell her that I love her! =D Such a nice photos, it seems that you having really fun time!

    Please notice me when you arrive to Turrialba! I'll be waiting for you! Im in the Intercontinental Hotel in Turrialba downtown!

    Love you Nana! =)

  4. last comment was for Eliana Leon of Alpha Romeo 4! sorry about not posting it in the last one!

  5. Chris Reynolds Delta Romeo 6
    Hi mate hope the school building is going well, theres nothing on the blog yet so looking forward to seeing how its progressing. Johno has been spotted on the cricket field so that should be ready for when you get back, but could do with you bringing some of that sunshine with you. Weve got loads of rabbits in the back fields but I guess that is a bit tame compared to your wildlife. Think Jonny is about fed up with Sunday mornings but at least you will be used to early starts. Keep up the good work. Love Mum , Dad & Alan xxx

  6. The funniest sister in the world18 March 2011 at 07:52

    Message for Jessica Bridge-Dunk, Delta Romeo 3

    I just googled 'Costa Rica jokes' and this is what I got:

    Q: Why does the cat purr in Costa Rica?
    A: Because catastrophe rules Costa Rica.

    Q: Why did the chicken cross the road?
    A: To get to Costa Rica.

    Q: What did the palm tree say to the coconut?
    A: Want me to milk you?

    Q: What did the Puma say to the other Puma?
    A: Purr! Purr! Purr!

    Q: What did the monkey say to the other monkey?
    A: Want to swing around?

    What do you think? I bet they made you smile!!!

  7. Your embarrassing sister18 March 2011 at 08:01

    Message for Jessica Emily Bridge-Dunk - Delta Romeo 3.

    Mum is complaining that it's hard to think of what to post on the blog when we don't get a response so I'm giving her some inspiration:

    I just looked up what ¡Pura Vida! means. I like it, mae!

    My research project: qué tigra!

    x x

  8. A blast from the past for Jessica Bridge-Dunk, Delta Romeo 3

    Here they are for one and all, the Moomins are about to call,
    Come and sit down here with me, they're here for you on your tv,
    they are the moomins, they are the moomins.
    Come with me give me your hand, I'll take you off to moomin land,
    you can fly just like a bird or sing the best song ever heard,
    they are the moomins, they are the moomins, they are the moomins.
    Bah ba ba bah ba ba ba bah...

  9. Dunia González Alpha Romeo 4

    Maeeeee, Rata de caño!!!! se llevo mi licra!!! que ingratitud!!! Digame que tambien tiene mi sueta north face y la voy a amar!!! Acuerdese de aquello que me tiene que traer!!! y suerte con todo en estos ultimos días! Relajada.. aqui todo va igual!!! <3 la quiero

  10. To Alette Jansen, Alpha Romeo 1

    Ha lieve die schat, je bent alweer een aardig eind op weg met de trek! Je hebt het bijna gehaald zelfs! We waren erg blij met een teken van leven na alle gebeurtenissen van de afgelopen tijd in de rest van de wereld. We volgen je op de voet en zagen de foto van je op de blog. Hopen snel weer eens iets van jullie groep te zien!Iedereen leeft hier enthousiast met je mee, Papa is blij dat hij je van een afstand mag volgen en niet met je mee hoeft! Geldt niet voor mij haha dat weet je! We zijn echt apetrots! Hier gaat alles zijn gangetje. Gilles is hard aan het werk om zijn rapport nog een beetje op te halen en is voornamelijk op het hockeyveld te vinden of in de sportschool. Beike doet het prima! Afgelopen woensdagavond met Patricia een kookcursus gevolgd, zelf pasta maken bij een echte italiaanse mama. Volgende keer haar pastasauzen, verheug me er nu al op! Verder druk bezig met het maken en bestellen van het fotoboek van het feest van opi en omi. Hoop dat het klaar is als ze terug zijn uit Villars. Dat zou leuk zijn! Heb deze week nog een brief gepost en hoop dat je die nog krijgt voordat je weer thuis bent. De vorige heeft er bijna vier weken over gedaan geloof ik. Lieve schat, nog een hele mooie tocht verder, je bent er bijna, hou je taai, dikke dikke kussen en WE LOVE YOU! Liefs paps&mams xxxxx

  11. Alette Jansen, Alpha Romeo 1

    special for you my love. I am very proud of you! Enjoy your track. Spoke to Evert and Quirine today and heard everything is ok! XXX Carla

  12. For Chris Reynolds (Delta Romeo 6)

    Hope you're enjoying your new task, it's finally started to warm up around here, you should be back in time for the two weeks of summer! Glee's stacking up here and Mum is getting dafter by the day. Keep smiling

    Alan, Dad & Mum

  13. To Jojo Huddie Delta Romeo 4
    Hey Chicken, I haven't read anything about your group for a little while but I'm sure now the Tsunami danger has gone you're back, living it up in your beach camp!
    Saw the sun for the first time in 10 days yesterday. It seems to have been snowing endlessly. 180cms last week, and the snow base is 387cm. Such a huge amount of snow! There's another 10cms tonight and then it's going to be sunny for a few days. I can finally work on my goggle tan.
    I've been missing you a lot lately and I'm counting down the days till I get to see you in Buenos Aires. It's 4 weeks exactly until I leave. I don't want the winter to end, it's been awesome, but we've got so much more adventure in store!
    I love you, Timma xxxxxxxxxxxxx

  14. Para: Delta romeo 3 /ignacio camacho
    De : Xinia-mamá de yen.
    q tal todo por allá???De seguro q super bien.
    Ya hacen falta, pero bueno a divertirse y disfrutar esta magnífica oportunidad; pues quedará grabada en sus corazones el resto de sus vidas.
    Desde aquí un abrazo grandooooteee!!!!!!
    P.S Ya le dije a andrés - cuando regresen, viene a mi casa y hacemos un delicioso desayuno!!!!!gallito pinto y x supuesto avenita!!!!!!
    Chao y un fuerte abrazo!!!!!!!!

  15. Para: yendry castro/delta romeo 4
    De má - of course!!!!!

    ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ JAG PURIM SAMEAJ!!!!!!!!!!!! ♥♥♥♥♥
    Así como hizo Ester, mire cada circunstancia con la óptica del Eterno, confiando en él, pues no se duerme y dormita el q guarda a israel!!!!
    Adonai Eloheinu, está allí ayudandote a encontrar respuestas.
    te ayloviu!!!jajaja chao!!

  16. Hannah Leach - Alpha Romeo 2
    Roo - off to the mystery destination with Mum this evening - it could be a bit wet as there is a cyclone warning in effect nearby but there must be some good sun as well. She keeps trying to guess and it is getting harder not to give the game away. Thomas is having the same job finding frustrations you went through - really wish I could help. Barnaby is now debating the US for college. You must be half way through your mega trek by now - was reading about how you have to get up before dawn - that has got to be tough. As for me same old same old about to start getting on planes again.
    Besos grandes Papi.

  17. For Jessica Bridge-Dunk Delta Romeo 3
    Hi Bunny,
    It is Saturday morning 7.40am and I came to have a look at pics and news of you. Was sure there would be something today but sadly nothing.
    I am beginning to think that your project is a top secret mission .......
    Today my plan is to meet Alison for lunch in Leeds. We have not seen each other since early January so no doubt we will be chatting all afternoon.
    Dad is going bowling today with A and then for lunch too.
    I hope that tomorrow I can have the laziest Sunday ever after a bicycle ride in the morning.
    Am hoping that your ear is ok. Rebecka was very naughty to put that I had said about it 15x. In fact it probably only got mentioned once, or twice or........
    Well am going to make myself a cup of tea and then back to bed for half an hour.
    Missing you like mad.
    Your Mummy x x x x

  18. Herma van der Wal19 March 2011 at 02:13

    message to Harm van der Wal Alpha Romeo 2

    Dearest son,

    How I'm longing to read a blog about your group! Are you still in neighbourhood of the vulcanos or already on the beachpart of the trek?
    In this part of the world all things are well and the start of spring is near.Hope to hear from you soon, hugs, mama

  19. For Hannah Leach - Alpha Romeo 2

    Hi Darling,

    We haven't heard anything about your trek yet on the website, but I'm sure you are finding it fun and challenging in equal measures. We miss you!!

    I abandoned Dad to compete in a golf tournament this weekend, and I didn't come last!!! It was an experience, to say the least, and was eventually won by a 14 yr old - must to our disgust. My golf friends and I are way beyond "past It"!

    Very excited to be going on my surprise trip tonight. I wonder where I'm going? I know you'll be sitting there smugly, since you already know. You'd better hope I like it, or I know who to blame - since you were in on the planning.

    Can't wait to hear more of your news.

    Hugs and kisses

  20. fiona Illingworth19 March 2011 at 13:09

    For Megan Illingworth Alpha Romeo 5
    Hi Megs
    Its been a fab day here today the weather has been wonderful. Dad and I played in the St Patrick days comp with Matt at Belton Woods and we came 3rd !! You do realise that I had to carry them both round the whole way !!!
    Lu went out eventing with Purdy yesterday at Lincoln she had a good day out and just missed out on the rosettes, which isn't too bad considering Purdy's been out of action for over a year.
    Stop Press ......... Your letter and Lu's postcard arrived on Friday !!!
    We've loved seeing the photos and reading all about what you've been up to on the blog ( although Lucy had to point you out to me in one of the pictures !!! Sorry about that !! Blind as a bat !!)
    We woke Ted up the other day he has survived the big chill, ( Lu and I were a bit worried about opening the box ) I've posted a photo of him on facebook !
    Love you loads and loads and loads
    Mum Dad Lucy and all the animals !! xxxxxxxxxxx

  21. Caroline Murray, Alpha 4.

    Im loving the recent update and your looking amazing in both the pictures. So nice to get updated on what your doing out there, sounds amazing, just hope your not the one being left at camp whilst everyone heads off. But you look really happy, which is a big relief from your last project when you were feeling ill. Now an update from my side, which as i said in my last blog isn't going to be that interesting but has been good and better then i thought. Quite a few people went up southampton for mel's birthday but wanted to save money so didn't bother but ended up in plymouth again last night haha, i have no willpower when your not here to say your not bothering heading out. Never mind was a good night out but random group i went out with il update you on that when i get to speak to you, which is hopefully wednesday, im so excited never thought that day would come. Today iv read your blog, which sorted out my hangover and put me in the best mood. After that i went town with tom to head to tubes and sophie's, she's missing you aswell, well not to the extent of me but still. Watched the rugby, England lost to Ireland but looking like we'll win the six nations still, sure you dont care but im telling you anyway. I also popped in to see judith, she's fine and really happy about your letter you sent. Sure you'll hear from her on here soon. Daisy letter has been delivered today, she was so happy, I phoned her yesterday and said i couldn't pop it over then but would today, think the suspense nearly killed her, but all's good now. So basically iv run around after you today haha, standard day off really- joking has been good. I cannot wait to speak to you, hopefully wont be working but should be fine if i am anyways can always have a long phone call in the evening. Wanna hear what your up too, these blogs are good but not long enough. Guess what nearly three weeks until you return, that is going to be a brilliant day. Think the new head chefs days off are on sunday and monday so might be hard getting that day off, as its on a monday but il do it, so do not fear il hopefully be greeting you at the airport. Cannot miss a day like that think il be more excited walking into that airport then i would actually going on holiday. I love you so much and il blog you in the next few days, keep at it and enjoy your last few days!!!!! xxxxxxxxxxxxx sam xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  22. For Martha Gray: Alpha Romeo 6

    Hi Martha,
    We have been trying to post a message to you but for some reason the site will not let us do it. We are just thick when it comes to IT,so we have sent this to your Mum to help us out.
    We have been following your exploits and have come to the conclusion that it is a case of "rather you than me" we think you are either mad or very brave. That was some toliet hole you were digging (see photo) it looked big enough for one hundred people and it looks deep enough to take one hundred tons of you know what!!!!
    As you can imagine here in Bryneglwys, the centre of all that happens in Wales, it is just as exciting as usual even the fish in the pond look fed up.
    Right enough of this rubbish, look after yourself and keep safe enjoy the rest of your time out there.
    God Bless.
    Lots of Love
    Mike and Bev

  23. Message for Ellie Spicer: Alpha Romeo 4: Hello!! Its a message from Victoria and Phil - we are excited to hear all your news - sounds amazing! We are enjoying your parents great hospitality at the moment - will not give details as I am sure it would make you jealous! Take care and we look forward to hearing from you soon!

  24. Lucy Hill Delta 1
    Hey trouble,
    Hope the hike is going all good and nothing has been to much for you. You better be doing well and enjoying every minute or I won't be impressed haha! Is it still super hot out there? Nice and sunny here to at the moment (will soon change!). I had my interview at hertfordshire was all good :). Fingers crossed I get in hehe.
    Hope your all good though :), still missing you like crazy! Don't moan it was never going to change haha! If your addicted to all that good food out there. How are you surviving without coffee of have you found some out there? It wouldn't surprise me if you have lol, you can smell coffee a mile away!
    Life is all good at the moment though and I'm fulfilling your little list ;), just need someone to go to the sea side with lol! Still reading your letter on a regular bases as well :D!
    Anyways I'll let you get back to your hiking I can't wait to hear all about it.
    Miss you loads little hiker
    Blane xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

    P.s. Jersey shore and glee are immense where going to have such fun when you get back :D.

  25. Robbie Coates Alpha Romeo 4
    Good to see your smiling face before you set off, you look very well and happy and I hope all is good with your trail building/blazing and that you have had no nasty experiences with snakes and spiders. England are through to the quarter finals as South Africa beat Bangladesh. Pakistan ended Australia's unbeaten world cup run since 1999 but both teams are through. England lost 28-4 to Ireland so didn't get grand slam but won six nations. Warm and sunny yesterday so finally cut the grass, it was long!Choral concert in 450 Hall was excellent, I was next to Rob Quincey's mum! I'm off to Karin's for lunch. Keep smiling. Love mum xxx

  26. ZOE CARTER-OWEN20 March 2011 at 05:15

    Right now, I'd really like to be a little baby turtle on the beach, being looked after by you. We could sit and watch the sun set together, and you could feed me little organic free range sun dried tomatoes every time I stuck my little head out of my little shell. I love you and miss you terribly. Enjoy. ZOER xxxxx

  27. Bericht voor Daan van Apeldoorn van Alpha Romeo 4.
    lieve Daan. Wij zagen hele leuke foto's van jou en je groep! Jij hebt echte mooie brede schouders gekregen van het harde werken. Vandaag stralende zon op Parnassia, met Pico gewandeld en hij zwom als een zeehond in zee. Vanmiddag mam gewandeld met Omi en jij krijgt veel liefs van haar. Noor gisteren naar Hair musical in Rotterdam geweest. lieve Daan, wij missen jou een beetje en wij wensen jou veel plezier en goed weer voor de komende tijd!veel liefs Mam, pap en noor.(ook van Elaine veel groetjes en neef Marc die gisteren kwam eten)

  28. MAGS CHILAEV Delta 4

    Hello again, as you can probz tell facebook isn't delivering the goods anymore so I'm on here every time an essay beckons.
    Alexa and I went to Byron Burger today and she had this massive juicy meaty one with loads of melted cheese, apparently the temperature of the bun and the texture of the meat was perfect. I think this sounds revolting (the veggie ones didn't look great so I opted out) but we've decided we have found you a meaty lover rival: so we've already set a date for when you come back and we all go for a burgers in covent garden. Mags withdrawal symptoms were kicking in as we passed a pinchos bar and so to sooth them we went and got ice cream summer-spain-style and I had one possibly as big as the one we had with Rachel on our last night in san sebby. I miss our hysterical stupid laughter and being able to mind-read all your jokes
    and it was quite late when we were coming back and i looked up at the dark clouds and remembered those times in costa rica when the sky would be sprinkled with them, glittering all over your head xxxxxxxxxxx

  29. Harry Fellows, Alpha Romeo 4, 11C
    Great pics and update on here. Good to see you and get a catch up via the blog- sounds like you've been busy.

    Tes got a silver medal (yeah!), Joe's team won the BUCS cup (yeah), dad and I enjoyed Dublin, Wales beating Ireland (yeah) particularly washed down by lots of Guinness and we've finished decorating Tesni's old room and only 18 days into your trip!!
    So we've been busy too and the plumber's due in next week to start on your bathroom. We ordered a special loo for it- called a long-drop!!! (haha)
    Spring's arrived here and the garden's calling. Where are you?? We miss all your help and chats but so glad you're having an amazing time Harry.
    Keep it up!
    Shared a coffee with Dan and Atbin's mum again this morning.

    Lots of love and keep taking those pictures.
    Big M, Big D and all the gang xxxxxxx

  30. Harry 'chip hazard' Fellows- Alpha Romeo 4

    Alright Baz whats occurin alright?
    loving the blue cap! haha where'd you get that from?? mum describes you as chip hazard hahaha oh bazzy, you and joey both know how to go all out with haircuts. :)
    looks like you're working hard anyways with a crackin view, no complaining i imagine :)
    sunny here too, :) oh also whats the time difference between us and you? any new bezzies? ha :)
    the welsh girls were a brilliant laugh on dublin, got them understanding my use of the phrase 'dog' haha. still thought i was slightly weird though..also tried to whip out my liverpool accent, whilst sharing a room with a girl who was from north wales.. she thought i was taking the michael out of her.. ooops haha. had to laugh that one off pretty quickly. apart from that, dublin was so amazing. didnt play that much but got my first cap and we came second so very pleased. it was such a crackin experience :) as im sure you're having at le moment!!
    just posted a comment on one of the other blog walls so not much more to say in this one just that i hope you're enjoying yourself buddy!!
    keep getting stuck in there you scally. just be brave. miss you!(and so does the Tu)
    also looking at your trail on your map the other day in your room, i swear my geography skills are getting better! haha
    lots of love bazzy xxxx

  31. To Harry Fellows, Alpha Romeo 4, 11C Costa Rica.

    Please stop wearing that blue baller cap Baz, your not fresh out of an american high school. Looks as if your having an amazing time though, keep taking loads of photos!
    Mum says you've been slumming it in the jungle whilst you've been out on expeditions, no hot water bottles in a hammock dermot haha!
    Anyway have a presidente on me (was a local beer when i was out there). Love your brother xxx
    p.s. arsenal have successfully bottled it from 3 cup competitions in the last few weeks, devastating.

  32. eliana leon alpha romeo! nana tecueme dems y espero que le haya llegado mi redaccion (le mande una por el blog pero no se si se envio) carenalga la extraña a mas no poder nanicarameli asi alchilin... me emociono dem verla hablando en el video! ya kiero verla TECUEME!




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