Sunday, January 27, 2013

Day 7 - Lake Arenal Adventures

I was sad to leave behind the nicest hotel of our stay thus far but Friday morning meant riding out from Mystica.  The goal for the day was to ride the length of Lake Arenal and around the backside of the Arenal Volcano to the town of La Fortuna.

It was VERY windy when we started

After descending from the hotel, we began our biggest climb of the day

The route rolled up and down along the lakeshore for miles! Lots and lots of hills.

Before too long, Jeff and I broke off from the others, opting out of the group rest stop, so we were on our own to enjoy the ride.

 The entire ride was in the rain forest around the lake - lots of wildlife spotting and water and scenic views!

We ran into a pack of coati (relatives of raccoons) trying to beg for food

Finally we stopped at the Arenal dam to wait for the group

Our first view of the Arenal Volcano, though the top remained shrouded in clouds today

We rode on a bit further with the group to reach our lunch stop.  On the way, I had one of the scariest moments of the trip when I hit a bump on a downhill and went skidding sideways - still at speed and still on the bike - as the back fishtailed back and forth.  Somehow I managed to stay upright! Phew...I was even more cautious on descents after that.

At lunch I could have sworn our waiter was that werewolf kid in the Twilight movies.

Never pass up an opportunity to get up close and personal with a cow.  Even a fake one.

Once we arrived in Fortuna, Jeff and I dropped our clothes off to have laundry done - after a week of riding, we really needed some clean clothes!  The rest of the evening was spent enjoying various alcoholic delights of Costa Rica.

I became a bit of a pina colada addict on this trip too.

Map/elevation for the day's ride.


Karen said...

what an awesome experience! I might just be a jealous hater ;) as I was scrolling through the pics I thought your waiter was the twilight guy too!

Kristina said...

I'm just catching up on your trip - what a great experience! I went to Nicaragua for the first time last summer and will head back this August. It's a great country, and I would imagine that seeing via bike would be pretty awesome!

heather said...

I rode a bike in Costa Rica once. I went around a corner and almost smashed into a six foot long iguana sunning himself on the road. It scared the crap out of both of us!

Elayne said...

Wow, looks like a great trip. Cows are always fun, no matter what country you're in.