Outback Cuads orchestrated a Poker Ride today, raising money for school improvements at Zaragoza, a small pueblo in the high hills above Samara.


We picked up our “hand” of cards from wranglers along the way, while dodging a typical Saturday morning commute.


Mostly cows and calves today.


We came to the first river crossings soon after leaving the hiway, deeper and wider with the much appreciated rains of late – some estimate 10″ in the past 10 days.



Craig and Myla lead our pack.  Excellent driving, Craig.


We found waterfalls that weren’t there last week.



We picked up our third card at this “bridge”, which was built by the wranglers last night. The creek was only three feet wide, but 30 feet deep.  You could’ve jumped, Fred.


Much of the trail looked like this.



And this.


But sometimes it looked like this, with a view to Samara and Isla Chora. Our group just dodged the rain; others were not so lucky. In this area of tiny microclimates, timing is everything.




A much needed stop.



A sandwich for Steve.


Beers all around.


One more river to cross.



At the end, we were as tuckered out as these farm sentinels. Upon return to Outback, were enjoyed free beer and a delicious lunch prepared by the new chef. Rhonda had the winning hand with 3 Kings. She offered shots all around. Thanks, Brian, for a great day.





Hoffman's woodpecker

Hoffman’s woodpecker

The Bolseros (Orioles) were late today, beaten by the Hoffman’s Woodpecker.

Social Flycatcher

Social Flycatcher

Each morning a parade of birds stops by our bamboo to survey the neighborhood and make a plan for the day.

Streak-backed Oriole

Streak-backed Oriole

With coffee on the terrace, we make our own plans while watching the show.

Lineated Woodpecker

Lineated Woodpecker




What a treat!


From the Voice of Guanacaste, this is the best thing I’ve read about what all those people are doing on the beach at Ostional during a turtle Arrival (Arribada).  It says that, in a big Arribada, many of the eggs are destroyed by other turtles “over-digging”.  When 251,000 turtles try to lay their eggs on the same stretch of beach within a few days, it’s bound to happen.  So harvesting during the first 3 days doesn’t have a big impact on overall survival.  Caring for the nests and cleaning the beach, however, does have an impact, a positive one.


What the article doesn’t explain is how SINAC assesses the market and who the buyers are.  Even so, if you run the numbers, you can quickly see that a large Arribada like we saw in September produces a $40 share for each of the 230 members.  Seems like a labor of love to me.  More important, perhaps, to turtle survival is to stop polluting the oceans.

birding in costa rica

Just started seeing the Streak-backed Orioles this week here at the beach in Costa Rica. He’s the first one each morning to stop in our bamboo, just after sunrise – hence the poor light.

Streak-backed Oriole

But he’s getting bold enough to visit our deck railing where we recycle our dog fur from the curry comb for nest building. .

costa rica traditional dance

15 September is Costa Rica Independence Day.

dias ferriadas costa rica

In most towns that means a parade.

In Samara the baton twirlers are new.

costa rica independance day

Apparently, some were up late last night practicing.

traditional dancers costa rica

But the traditional dancers are a staple of every holiday event.

traditional dance costa rica

These skirts have more than five meters (almost like yards) in each one.

traditional dance costumes costa rica

How’d you like to twirl that weight in the tropics?

costa rica holiday parade

costa rica festivals   costa rica traditions


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