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March 25th, 2008 by bozemankayaker


Its finally time!!!! Ben, Pat and I left Pavones after the chromic sickness we all suffer from of kayaks refusing to fit in the wanted mode of transportation disease. The back up taxi plan worked though the boats did rip his racks off half way to our destination. For the day we were headed to Heredia just north of San Jose, ultimatly and to our excitement we were FINALLY on our way to the Patria! A day later we find ourselves at the put in with just enough light left to get away from the obnoxiously loud road and set up camp. In our usual fashion Pat and I sleep in hammocks under the leaky tarp while Ben slept on a freshly laid fern bed on the trail. Early the next morning after a bitter cold night we are off and moving at first light. The hike is terribly hard to describe. Basically its hard. The first couple of hours on the river were full on rock bwoinking and gritted teeth pitoning intermingled with some nice little stuff. The character stayed pretty constant until we reached the mouth of the infamous gorge. We failed to find the portage trail and ended up climbing a cliff only to stumble upon our sought after trail only ten feet above the top out of our victorious accent. We reach the top of the ridge next to the gorge and realizes that its lengh must be quite short. We are still quite high but slowly we are able to begin to see the pool below us. It is a georgeous blue with the white foam of what has to be a waterfall on the right. As we descend further the noise of the creek is slowly changing into the distinct distant and muffled rumble of a large waterfall. We had known the waterfall was here, but I could not have been more excited even if I had unknowingly stumbled upon a similar waterfall in an equaly beautiful setting. Trying to navigate the near vertical jungle descent yet with eyes glued to the patchy view throught the trees we exploded onto the swath of rocks surrounding the pool below the drop. Pretty much, drops dont get much cleaner than this one. HOLEY MOLEY we were excited!! Alright, waterfall time comence. With nothing but excitment we hike back up to the boats while planning how to cordinate filming. Pat and I now have a 2:30, 2:35 scedualed take off time. Ben opted not to run the drop as #1. His shoulder had been giving him greif throughout the whole trip and #2. He figuered he had been lucky on this trip and wanted to make sure to go back home uninjured. We thought that was a wise choice. Especially later when 50% of the people who ran it that day got whumped. Our launch times were nearing and finaly Pat was in the water spashing his face and off he went. Five minutes later I was off and shot into the gorge. The first drop was a fun slide twisty thing that shot into a 7? foot wide gorge and booked it around the blind corner to the left. Once inside there was en eddy on the left inside a caldron before the second drops horizon line. I enjoyed my time in here trying to soak it all in. What a perfect place. A little bit of lip scouting and a boof into another left eddy brought me to the lip of the final drop. I reminded myself for the last time to tuck, and off the Pink Famingo and I went! little bit of pre drop navigation I get a glimpse of Ben and Pat right below and then tuck, a hit, that hole working sensation and then up with a HUGE smile plastered all over my face. I am anxious to here Pats tale, as there was no way for us to scout the inner gorge and I was curious to here what he thought. He did fine and the drop went well except he had an exceptionaly hard hit and messed up his shoulder a bit as well as implodng his skirt. We ate a nice lunch and then quickly took off as we were quite behind scedual, and had lots of water ahead of us. We quickly came to a very cool set of maybe four? drops above a river wide seive, which would require some onshore assistance in order to get out. I deamed it worthy to fire up and enjoyed a sweet boof along with other quality stuff. The seive portage required only a short distance of travel, maybe only fourty feet, but took the better part of an hour. Needless to say we camped on the left right after the seive. And in proper fashion you found two of us shivering in the air as the other was wet and tossing on the ground. The next morning the creek continued with its nice character for many hours. One of the more outstanding instances of the first two thirds of the day would have to be one of the more stange animals I have ever seen. Pat is scouting a drop when all of a sudden Ben goes ¨No way!¨ Over to the right is what I can only describe as a pigmy elephant. Anywyas it was weird. It decided to cross the right above a class IV. And by right above I mean less than a foot above the drop. I thought for sure it was going to get swept down that thing as it was in up to half its hight. The character only got better the further we went. Around 2, 3pm we realize we still have a long ways to go and really start to increase the speed. We still were running off hand signals, but at this point were more prone to just get it done. Many sweet drops, a speedy pace , and finally after dark we arrive at the take out bridge of the Sucio. Done!
We get into Heredia fricken late, and say goodbye to Ben as he leaves for the airport. Pat and I depart the next day for San Juan Del Sur, Nicaragua to take a week of spanish language school. After the classes we took off for La Ceiba in northern Honduras. Our adventure here is about to begin and we couldnt be more excited.

Very quickly here is a tenative list we have created for ourselves:

Honduran Exploration
Canyaking in Belize
Guatemala Creekboating

Alright pictures of the Patria as soon as I find a computer that works!

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