Costa Rica Journal for Aug 02nd - August 04, 2001 12:03 Local Time

We left the Arenal Volcano this morning, but not without taking a picture of the pretty purple (2) and pink flowers around the Hotel.

Along the road down the mountain, we spotted a few Howler Monkeys, one of which had a baby with her. She kept walking to the edge of a branch, looking like she was going to jump to the next tree, but would always chicken out and let another monkey go in front of her. Finally, when everyone else had gone and she was about to be left behind, she jumped for it and made it safely. Continuing down the mountain, we saw the local source of power: windmills.

On the way to Tamarindo, we stopped at a zoo in Canas where they have several felines. We first saw an Ocelot and then a Puma (Mountain Lion) as well as a different pink flower. After that, there was another Ocelot (2) (3), then a Gray Fox. Finally, we came to the much anticipated Jaguar (2) and then another one (2). Unfortunately, their environment wasn't very suited for taking pictures (and the flash would disturb them), but it was cool being able to see these beautiful animals. We were told by the proprietors that the reason they have these cats in cages is because local residents have turned them in for fear that they may be shot by local farmers. The population of the area continues to grow and Jaguars need alot of land to roam and search for food. When their habitat decreases, they wind up stalking livestock (a cow makes a nice meal for a Jaguar).

Back on the road, I snapped a few more pictures of some billboards: Burger King, Papa John's, and Church's Chicken, Budget Car Rental and TAM Travel, Guanacaste Country Day School, and Payless Car Rental and Pedregal Construction.

After arriving in Tamarindo, we took a walk on the beach and took the obligatory picture of the sunset over the Pacific as well as a shot of some cool clouds.

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