S: Photography Class Costa Rica 2011
BC: Mauricio hands me our bags from the roof of the bus. | We had a great trip!! | Costa Rica 2011
1: A half hour night ride from the airport through San Jose. Our driver more then once saying "just 5 more minutes. I think that was the extent of his English. Many Policia, a scooter sprawled on the center line, was it's rider standing on the side of the road, or already removed? | "Casa Conde Hotel" San Jose, Costa Rica We went to our room at 12:05 a.m. Tuesday morning. No elevators, our heavy suitcases are lugged up the stairs and they will be hauled down again, this same morning. Our rooms are very "casa", courtyard, tile floors, kitchen, living room, bath and two bedrooms. Cold beer, wine, pop, and water are in the frig, all with little stickers on announcing their price. $2.50 for Imperial "La cerveza de Costa Rica" | What a day! 7:00 a.m. out of Green Bay, to Chicago. Breakfast during a layover to Miami. A long 5 hours in Miami as we waited for the flight to Costa Rica. Arrival 10:30 p.m. San Jose, Costa Rica.
2: Sandy let's us know we should have breakfast and meet for 8:00 a.m. We are four of a group of 14. Sandy Benefield, (Kathy's sister) Kathy Matzke, Dianna Matzke and Karen Schmit. The photgrapher is Monica Quesada, our Naturalist is Erick Guzman, and our bus driver is Mauricio Hernandez. The other ten members seem very nice with a few getting new cameras for Christmas. | Travel from San Jose to the Arenal Observatory Lodge was long, long, long..... up hills, down hills, traveling through the cloud forest. | White Throated Magpie Jay | Arenal Volocano Arenal is the country's most active volcano. It's almost perfect conical shape dominates the plains around the Fortuna de San Carlos area. Daily emissions of gas, ash and lava have been the hallmark of this volcano since 1968. It is not uncommon to hear the volcano rumble and see the mushroom-shape clouds of the small Strombolian-type eruptions rise from the summit.
3: Our first photo shoot as they feed the birds. | Clay-colored Robin | Blue-Gray Tanager | Red Legged Honeycreeper | White-nosed Coati
4: Lineated Woodpecker | Rofous Motmot
5: Danaus Ecocenter | Lunch in Fortuna
6: peaceful vegetarians | Howler monkeys rearely set their feet on the ground, they only travel through the canopy. | Don't stand under the tree if you annoy them, they will pee on you.
7: View from the Arenal Skytram | Panning ZIP liners | Pre focus manual continuous shoot parallel to the subject 1/30 shutter to start low ISO rhythm w/ the subject polorizer if needed | We thought we were going to zip line here. Sadly Road Scholar had a communication breakdown. Later we will zip line.
8: Arenal Lake | Montaezuma Oropendola | Passerini's Tanager
9: view from the Arenal Observatory Lodge | Green Honeycreeper | Great Kiskadee | Buff-throated Saltataor | Hepatic Tanager
10: The volcano kept it's head in the clouds. We learned it has not been active for 5 months.
11: Rattlesnake Plant | An early morning shoot, breakfast, a nature walk, guided by Eric and we are off to the Tropical Rainforest. 11:00 a.m. departure, we will have lunch at the Selva Verde Lodge in the Sarapiqui area. A stop along the way at Muelle to photograph iguanas
12: The bus comes to a stop at a possible photo op. Two gentlemen and their oxen are waiting for a movie producer. There part would be to take the actors from the river to the lodge with their oxen and authentic cart. They very nicely hook up the oxen and pose, and allow us to pose for pictures.
13: Iguanas in the town of Muelle | Black Spiny Tailed Iguana
15: Red Eyed Tree Frog (Agalychnis Calidryas) Photos shot at night using flashlights, no camera flash. High ISO Blue flashlights work best Aperture Priority, largest possible Underexpose 2 steps -2
16: A morning macro session and time to hit the jungle pool, while others go on a hike. | Red-Eyed Tree Frog
17: zip line | Black & Green Dart Frog | Blue Jeans Dart Frog
19: Anhinga | Sarapiqui River | Green Kingfisher | Bare-throated Tiger Heron | Black River Turtle
20: Bromeliads | Lankester Botanical Gardens San Gerardo de Dota area 1940's Charles H. Lankester studied Costa Rica's epiphytic plants.
21: Trogon Lodge Savegre Valley | The waterfall next to our cabin | Our cabin
24: Eating fresh trout | Stalking the Quetzal | Eating the olive-shaped fruit of the Aguacatillo tree | San Gerardo de Dota valley, a cold environment in a tropical region. During the day temperatures 70-75 *F. At night the mercury can fall into the lower fifties. | Los Quetzales National Park , one of Costa Rica's newest; created in July, 2005.
25: Waiting for the world's smallest humming bird
26: The small and secluded valley of San Gerardo de Dota is in the Western flank of the Cerro de la Muerte massif in the Talamanca Mountain Range. Two brothers lost on a hunting trip, settled the valley in the 1950's. Five years they lived in a cave before moving their families (their wives, two sisters) to the valley. Selling cheese in the nearest village, Bob from Minnisota gave them trout fingerlings to put in the Savegre River. Today the family serves trout to the ecotourists.
27: Cerro De la Muerte , the third hightest peak in costa Rica stands over 11,000 feet above sea level, crowning the continental divide along the Talamanca Mountain Range, providing spectacular | views of both the Caribbean and Pacific slopes, on a clear day. Temperatures below freezing point are not uncommon during the night. Quite a few travelers died from hypothermia when caught by the night in the then long journeys on horseback or oxcart.
28: Sunset on the Pacific
30: Ballena Marine Park | Whales Tail | Whales Tail
31: where I left my clothes | Shooting the night sky
32: Heading back to San Jose We stop for lunch and the Scarlet Macaws are in the tree.
33: From the bridge above | Living Fence
34: Monica Quesada our Photographer | Eric Guzman our Naturalist | Mauricio Hernandez our bus driver