Channel 11 to Bat Cave, Rio Viejo Puriscal

The other day four people from TV channel 11 came to our gate. They wanted permission to park their car on our property while they walked up the river to the Bat Cave. One of the crew was a young woman who spoke some English and seemed very eager to get their story at the cave. One of the men was carrying a large camera and another carried a machete. The machete carrying guy seemed like the guide and said he had been here before and knew the way. Of course “the way” used to be cutting through the lower portion of our property. We explained that “the way” was now closed. John was feeling generous and let them park the car on our property and allowed them to walk down our concrete stairs to the river. John walked with them down to the river while I stayed back restraining Roxy from ankle biting the intruders.

It’s the rainy season. I haven’t seen or heard groups of people walking in the river for several months. It rains most afternoons and the river is much larger than during the dry season. I noted that the guy with the machete was the only one with a pair of boots that might be able, with a lot of rock scrambling, to go up the river to the Bat Cave. The camera man had on nice looking black leather boots that went to his ankle. In preparation for the hike he tucked his pant legs inside his white socks. It was obvious that he was not prepared for the river trek.

John came back shortly after leaving to escort the group. He took them to the river bank and wished them well and walked back to our house. It was less than an hour when the group arrived back at their parked car. All of them wet, some up to their waist. They didn’t make it to the Bat Cave and weren’t able to get their story. For some reason the guy with the machete was smiling a lot and seemed happy, maybe it was all of the exercise. We gave them some plastic bags to sit on so the car seats didn’t get wet and they were on their way.

I was glad they didn’t get their story. I don’t want this area more publicized and more people coming to take a look. Mostly, I didn’t want them filming our concrete stairs as the new easy way to get to the cave.

cave Rio Viejo, Costa RicaEvery weekend we take walks through the property and this past weekend we decided to walk up the river, past the Bat Cave and to the waterfall. We were able to make the hike with no problem because we know the trail through our property and along the river that allows us to get behind some extremely large boulders in the river. Once we were beyond that point we were able to walk in the river and didn’t go in above our thighs.

The Bat Cave was the most beautiful I have seen it. It is very difficult to photograph and the pictures don’t do it justice. The sunlight penetrated it more than I have seen in the past. I don’t know what type of bats live in there but we have been told by the locals that the bat population in the area has plummeted. In days gone by, at dusk, thousands of bats used to exit the cave and fly up the canyon.

river waterfallThe waterfall was a sight to see. It was the largest I have ever seen it. The pool of water below the fall was also deeper and fuller than in the past. This is a favorite hangout spot in the summer for the locals. One side of the canyon is covered with primary forest. It’s a lovely place to visit and observe nature. As I was photographing the waterfall, John saw a tayra on the rocks just above the falls. He was yelling to get my attention and saw I was taking pictures so he thought I heard him, but I didn’t hear him and the tayra didn’t appear in any of the shots.

The main reason I wanted to go on this hike was to look for unusual rocks and crystals on the river banks. During this trip we found several beauties. After the hike, while drinking lemonade and cooling down from our work out, John asks me if I want to hear something strange. Of course I do! He told me that the day prior, when he was in town, he recognized a uniformed police officer as the guy carrying the machete that was with the TV crew. They both smiled and waved at each other. Yes, it is a small world, especially here in Santiago de Puriscal.