Arenal

"Cloud Cover" A volcanic cloud drapes Areanal just after sunrise.

La Volcan Arenal looms over the tiny city of La Fortuna in central Costa Rica like a sleeping giant and was where I called home this weekend.
After taking a five hour bus ride from Heredia, three friends and I bargained our way into staying in a hotel for 8 dollars and a free haircut. After a solid night of partying, we spent Friday climbing the steep, humid jungle near the base of the volcano. There were frogs investigating the leaf litter for insects, toucans probing the trees for fruit and spiders the size of my hand waiting patiently for dinner to come to them.

"Toucan" A Toucan probes for various nuts and fruits in the canopy.

The hike took us through nine microclimates from rigid pine trees to vascular Eucalyptus trees, everything was covered in moss. After descending the rigid back of the Arenal, we scaled a smaller volcano, at the top of which was a massive crater lake. The lake, named Cerro Chato, was full of decaying material and as I stepped into it I sunk into the silt up to my waist. The water was a turquoise color and the walls of the crater were consumed by forest. Upon our decent, we were greeted by an uninterrupted view of Costa Rica more than 60 kilometers to the ocean.
Arenal is one of the top ten most active volcanoes in the world and the city has felt its wrath before.
After being dormant for more than 400 years, Arenal suddenly erupted in 1968 violently killing 87 people and burying the villages of Tabacon, Pueblo Nuevo and San Luis in tons of rocks, lava, and ash.
In the wake of the disaster, Arenal Lake was created to reduce the impact of another explosion. In the dry season, the lake sometimes dries up and the villages can be seen covered in volcanic rock.
On Saturday I climbed Arenal to the top of the tree line and entered an obscure world. The air smelled of sulfur; all plant life lay petrified in the recent lava flows. Walking was hazardous as the rocks easily slipped out from beneath me. Smoke bellowed out of the top, developing ash clouds.
Since the explosion in 1968, lava flows and mini-explosions could be witnessed almost every night, but ten months ago they stopped, and locals are worried it may be building up for another burst.

More photos can be found at ryancorrigan.shutterfly.com

"Rio Celeste" We swam in a pool adjacent to this 150ft plus waterfall colored in rich blue.

About these ads

About ryancorrigan

So who is Ryan Corrigan and why should you choose to view his pictures? Ryan Corrigan is an award winning photographer...... blah bablah..bablah. Nope. I have won some awards, but nothing to be proud about and I am not going to subject you to some poetic, third-person, illusion of a perfect being biography like some of the other guys out there. I am a gangly, six-foot three college dork who wants to develop his photography and writing skills in the hope of one day making it as a photojournalist for National Geographic. My photography is amateur and my writing skills are even more sub par, but enough with the cynicism. I am actually an extremely positive person. My passions are nature conservation, telling stories, and doing service work, I intend to encompass all three with this site. I believe if I inspire you with the stories of endangered species and pieces of land and the people who are trying to protect it, you will in tern be inspired to donate to their cause or at least be conscience about your every day decisions. I am currently a Junior at Doane College in Crete, NE studying Environmental Science, Biology, and Journalism. I live my life as adventurously as possible, love to cook, garden, and go to concerts. I believe one person can change the world, but it would be a lot easier if everyone came together. I hope you enjoy the site!
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Arenal

  1. Anonymous says:

    Well done Ryan!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s