09 February 2007

Trogon Lodge in San Gerardo de Dota

Thursday we took of to drive up into the mountains along the Pan-American Highway that leads to Panama. Carolina had told us about some cabins that are owned by her friends so we decided to check it out. Trogon Lodge is located in San Gerardo de Dota, a steep valley near "Cerro de la Muerte," Costa Rica's highest peak. The lodge itself is located at an altitude of 7,000 feet in the middle of an incredible forest of oak trees and jungle vegetation with a river flowing through the property. This area is called the "Cuna del Quetzal" (Cradle of the Quetzal). Here is a picture of this magnificient bird.

The lodge also hosts an aireal canopy tour. This peaceful scenery is really beyond description. After sunset the temperature dropped down several degrees to perfect sleeping weather. This is one place we'd really like to go back and spend so more time.

We arrived in time for lunch and a woman in the office said we needed to hurry over to the restaurant for lunch before they closed and she would send the manager over later with a key for our cabin. When the manager came to our table he gave us our key and told us about their services, rates and invited us to go on the Quetzal hunt Friday morning at 6:15 AM. I kept looking at this man, thinking that he looked familiar to me. He said his name was Lio and to ask for him if we needed anything during our stay.
As soon as he left the table, I told John I felt I knew Lio and I'd be right back. I found Lio in the kitchen and I asked him for his last name. When he gave it to me I realized this was the same Lionel I had worked with for 4 years more than 30 years ago. When I gave Lio my last name he suddenly recognized me too. We had such a good time catching up on each others' lives and remembering all our old friends. It really is a very small world!
This morning we met with Lio and several other lodge guest to go in search of the elusive Quetzal. We spent 2 hours searching and were about to give up when we ran into another guide that had just spotted a pair looking to build a nest.
We managed to get a good glimpse of the pair, but the photos we took came out too dark. If John can work some magic with PhotoShop we will post them here later.

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