Sunday, 19 February 2012

Alpha 3 in Carara National Park

Last Saturday Alpha 3 arrived comfortably early at the Cara Park after just a three hour journey from fieldbase. Having met the rangers and their giant iguana, we were shown to the casa verde, just a few kilometres from the crocodiles we saw on our way. We pulled together as a team and managed to overcome the disappointment that the bamboo wouldn´t be ready for another day so we´d have not one, but two nights sleeping inside on mattresses! Excitement was also at fever pitch at the prospect of showers and toilet facilities for the whole phase…apart from PM John, who was keen to ´go jungle´, and stick to the bucket plan.

Over the next few days we met the Rangers who were keen to get us started on the work we´d be doing; showing us around the jungle that is Carara National Park. On our very first morning we were fortunate enough to see numerous scarlet macaws, ant hills brimming with life and much more wildlife typical of the Park. We were also shown one of Raleigh´s previous projects, a footpath constructed back in 2001, and the area we would be working in during phase one, including a 15m wall on which Raleigh Artist Jemma would be orchestrating the painting of a mural. It appeared then that there was much to do in a park of some 2500km squared, covered by a mere 9 rangers! Our role predominantly entailed the reconstruction of pathways to increase tourist access to the national park, rebuilding stairways and digging irrigation drains along the footpaths. An exciting prospect for the weeks ahead.

Meanwhile at the casa verde we began the construction of what was to be our jungle camp; clearing a small area under trees home to capuchin monkeys, and constructing basha beds, a longdrop and a pathway. It took around a day and a half, but the end result felt well worth it. Not only are there now 15 basha beds, we also have a welcome sign, a loo seat, signs directing us to our hometown and what is soon to be a swing. Understandably we were all excited at the prospect of our first night in the jungle, and it lived up to our expectations, since, with the help of no rain to test our tarps, the bashas are still holding strong .It was great to start our environmental work on our fourth day, a full schedule of sourcing rocks for the path made the dinner of masa and refried beans taste even better.

In the past week, work has progressed at a good rate. Around 600m of pathway has been constructed, and the completion of the mural is imminent. It’s tiring, but rewarding work, especially as many tourists walk through, commending us for our efforts. While we’ve been working we’ve seen our fair share of jungle life – more macaws, a morph butterfly and a poisonous dartfrog.

Alpha 3 has also adjusted to life without showers at jungle camp, bathing and washing in the nearby stream every evening after a long day of work has become a fitting end to some tough days work, and other memorable moments included pancakes on shrove Tuesday, cooked by the indispensable trio of Jemma, John and Adri, in addition to learning Spanish, English, Dutch and Greek!

The next few days contain more of the same, mingled with a beach trip and a visit from fieldbase, and Louisa’s 19th birthday! We’re tired most evenings, but high spirited and looking forward to the rest of our phase!

Pura Vida!


  1. Para Alfredo Salas Garro.
    hoy(19/02) gracias a mi MALA vista, tuve la ilusión de haberlo visto con luz verde en feisbuk (IMPOSIBLE) sentí frío y todo :(
    dos semanas apenas, y parecen quien sabe ni quee, pooor lo menos usted debe estar feliz de la vida, pero aquí, apuesto que todos, lo extrañamos.Te amiis guapiiis. jaja

  2. To: Alexi Meghir, Alpha 3

    Hi lovey! I've just read about all the wonderful things you're doing in the national park. It sounds like hard work but I'm sure you're learning loads of new things and are gaining much value from them. Life in New York is pretty standard- though I woke up with a cold this past Saturday- *joy* Thinking of you always :)

    Love, Rachel

  3. Alpha 7 Sonia Deiters:

    Gefeliciteerd lieve Soniaaa! Hoop dat alles nog goed gaat! Geniet van je verjaardag! Mis je, love u! Xxxx Welmoed

  4. Alpha 7
    Sonia Deiters

    Lieve Lieve Son,
    ik hoop dat dit optijd bij jou is en anders een dagje te laat maar dat kan je wel aan toch ;) HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAY!! geniet van je dag en ik hoop dat iedereen heel lief voor je is! had er graag bij willen zijn.
    liefs, Clak

  5. Patricia Deiters-Rahusen20 February 2012 at 06:40

    To Sonia Deiters (Alpha7)

    Dearest Sonia, From all of us, for 2morrow 21st: congratulations on your 19th Birthday! Hiep hiep hoera, van harte gefeliciteerd en een dikke zoen,
    pap&mam, Eem en Claire, Cheeta, Flo en Moby en de rest van de huisraad. Miss you.Enhorabuena.

  6. Sian Lewis Alpha 3

    Dear siany
    Hope all is well and you are enjoying Costa Ricca. We have been reading the blog and see you have met alot of exciting wildlife - mum is very concerned about any potential crocodile encounters! We really hope you are settling into jungle life and benefiting from all the bio-diversity or whatever it is you want to study next year :)
    All is well here. Dad has called Orange and they say the reason your phone isn't working is that they don't cover Costa Ricca. If your phone is unlocked and you know a phone company that do cover you there then tell us so we can send you a new sim card. Mamgu is still very perky and Mair arrived today. I've gone back to school now and am thoroughly fed up about it. We had a lovely quite week in Solva despite mixed weather over halfterm. We will keep you upto date on mamgu's progress via the blog.
    Happy Pancake Day for tomorrow :)
    Love you forever,
    Bethan, Mum and Dad

  7. Alpha 7 - to Sonia Deiters
    Hee lieve Son!
    Gefeliciteerd met je verjaardag! Ik kan me zo voorstellen dat ze geen slingers hebben in het oerwoud, maar gelukkig kunnen de boomblaadjes dienstdoen als slingers! Ik hoop wel dat ze daar een liedje voor je zingen vandaag, anders doe ik het zo snel mogelijk op skype! Veel plezier nog Son, en hoop snel je verhalen te horen als je weer internet hebt.
    Een dikke verjaardagskus, Mart

  8. hola deyanira espero estes pasandola de acachimba... yo se q te has de sentir rara por lo del idioma.. pero trankila es solo el inicio.. despues cuando acordes estaras hablando ingles de la nada.. todo es q le pongas empeño... disfrutalo al maximo siempre te lo digo y te lo repito aka todo bien pensa en vos y en todo lo ke keres aprender... cuidate y hechale ganas a aprender de todo .. te kiero mucho... saludame al fugo decile q la pase de lo mejor y q te cuide jejejeje
    Att dinora

  9. To Sian Lewis (Alpha 3)

    Hey Sian hope everything's going ok in the jungle. Just went round Mark's to celebrate pancake day. Hope the food in Costa Rica is as tasty! Ellie and Jen were there and hope you're having a good time.

    Lyndsey just rang to see how I was which was nice. Sounds like they had a nice weekend in Solver.

    Thinking of you loads! Hope we can speak again soon.

    loads of love, from Pete xxxxx

  10. Para Adri Rodriguez (Alpha 3) Carara National Park

    Que me icheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee Adri? como va esa expedición? como la trata la madre selva, zancudos y lluvia? que tal el trato de los guarda parques y la iguana gigante? de fijo increíblemente accesibles y buena nota!! Como que vieron un oso hormiguero, que tan genial pudo ser?, jajaaj muchas preguntas que di no pueden ser respondidas. Estoy sentado en mi escritorio, con una gripe que me lleva carajo, estudiando para 2 quices mañana y pensando en como hubiera sido raleighar con usted. Pura buena vibra, positivismo, risas, toda una verdadera y divertida Adriana Rodriguez! jajaja

    Que tal la construcción de senderos y desagües? cansado verdad, jaja de seguro lo que mas esperan es que sean las 12 medio dia para ir al jungle camp a comer como si se hubiera acabado toda la comida en el mundo jajaja Que me dice de su bacha,no se ha espichado, nadie extraño apareciendo en medio de la noche para asustarla como en San Lucas jajaja??? Ahora le doy un buen tip de un compita ingles de la 11L, especial para la fase ambiental!! Esperando que no lo sepa jaja


    1 Olla onda
    2 Meestin´s sin la agarradera
    Una cocina de gas

    Agua, Harina, Bicarbonato de Sodio o Polvo de Hornear, Azúcar, Tang de algún Sabor (excepto te frio shhh hehe)sal, leche (pinito + agua) demás ingredientes.


    Encerar meestin con aceite.

    Primero, poner un meestin sin agarradera volcado hacia abajo dentro de la olla con agua hasta que cubra poco más de la mitad del meestin. En otro meestin agregar, azucar, tang, pasas, lo que quieran, revolver harina y polvo de hornear, luego con la mezcla de tang y agregar agua hasta crear una pasta que parezca de queque, las cantidades de todo es como 1 cucharadita de polvo de hornear, 1 tasa de harina, tang , agua etc. una pizca de sal. Ponerlo en el otro meestin, pero este vuelto para arriba encima del otro con la mezcla de queque. Tapar la olla con el sistema de 2 meestins con una tapa, esperar a que se cocine, dejar enfriar y sacar del meestin.

    YYYYY QUEQUE PA TODO EL MUNDO JAJAJAJA!! pueden hacer de todo tipo de saborshs, eso fue lo mejor de la Cangreja pa mi.

    Bueno loquilla que Dios la bendiga, que lo siga disfrutando y pongale mucho saborsh! DANZA KUDURO todo el día!!

    La quiero un montón,


  11. To Adri Rodriguez (alpha 3)

    Guapa!! Hello, i hope everything is going well on phase with you and that you are really enjoying being a PM, i am really looking forward to hearing all about it when you are back at Fieldbase, and can get on the internet. Everything is going well in England and the sun is even shining :D. Hope all is well and hear from you soon. Miss you.

    Josh xxx

  12. Hope all going well love reading the blog - just about worked it out now!!!! Dogs had a great time away they miss you!! Wonderful seeing what you are doing hope the digging goes well.
    Love from all Treadwells

  13. hola deyita espero estes bien. te extrañamos un monton espero estes pasando super bien en esta experiencia que estas y todo lo que aprendas sea para tu bien y que estes disfrutando al maximo la convivencia con el grupo. cuidate mucho y echale ganas siempre. te quiero muchisimo y siempre que veo las estrellas me pregunto donde estas y que estaras haciendo recordando tus locuritas. cuidate mi sobrina preciosa.. bendiciones para ti y todo el grupo :) Carmen

  14. To Adri Rodriguez (Alpha 3)

    ADRI!!! I cant believe you are really a PM and already busy on the first phase, it seems like only yesterday we were in Alpha 6 in Achuapa!! I hope you are having an amazing time, and im sure all of the group absolutely love having you as a PM, your awesome! Cant wait to hear all about it, enjoy the fine life, pura vida!! I wish i was back there with you, miss and love you lots.

    Rosie xxxx

  15. To Diana Hindle Fisher, Alpha 3
    Hi! We've been following your blog & hope you're having fun. Just back from lovely hols, now back to earth & missing you lots. But we have the rugby to look forward to & the house is so beautiful at the moment! Lucky you in the jungle! Wish I was there! Look forward to the next update, lots of love Mummy, Daddy & Is xxx


    ALPHA 3

    Lieve Ravenna,

    Even een berichtje voordat we met vacantie gaan naar de Canarische Eilanden. Hoop dat je het naar je zin hebt in het mooie Costa Rica en dat je een gezellig team hebt.
    Met ons gaet het wisselend. Af en toe wil mijn been niet zoals ik het wil en epi heeft nog vaak last van hoofdpijn. Dat zal wel beter worden nu het echte tuinseizoen weer begint. Net bericht van je vader gahd, dat hij en de hele familie zich weer vermaken in Hongarije. Freferik is nuje uitzending aan het skien. Zijn benieuwd naar je tweede fase in je uitzending



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Pura Vida!