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Poas Volcano!!!

We had one free day in San Jose, so we decided to leave the city and head to the most visited national park in Costa Rica, Poas Volcano.

The drive goes through several different scenaries; these are the coffee plantations around the volcano. Because the volano is still active and regularily spits out fresh ash, the soils are fertile and coffee is the most popular crop.

Best running weather ever!!! I could totally live in a place as gorgeous as this forever (can we move Caltech?) but sadly, the misty-ness meant we couldn’t see the volcano.

On the bright side… the craters are filled with super acidic water, making them a great place to study interesting microbial life, so maybe I’ll be back one day!

Poas has two craters, only one of which is active. The 500 m "hike" to the non-active volcano goes through a "cloud forest" rainforest ecosystem. Super breathtaking! Of course, the second crater was filled with fog, too.

I wonder what makes the yellow shins evolutionary favorable… they’re cute!

These big plants are called the "poor man’s umbrella." They’re huge and really thick, perfect for the weather up here!

My camera is pretty new, so I got to practice using the burst mode 🙂 There’s room for improvement!

We were already leaving, and trailing the rest of the group, but the wind picked up in the direction away from the crater so we decided to sprint back — and indeed, we got to see a little more of the volcano!!!

Getting to go the volcano was a great part of this trip, and I definitely want to go back some day to see the real crater! (Or even better, our tour guide mentioned that the only way to get to the actual lake is to be a scientist who needs to collect samples – so maybe one day, that will be essential to my research!)

Katja Luxem