The push is on for the famed wetlands of Palo Verde, deep in the heart of Guanacaste, paradoxically  Costa Rica’s hottest, driest province.
So this morning, I reluctantly traded in the beach scene to drive north.
 Away from the ocean, it’s hot.
It’s so hot . . .
(Chorus: ‘How hot is it?’)
We’re talkin’ the second-reel-of-whatever-that-John-Wayne-film-was-where-his-horse-collapses-and-he-drains-the-last-of-his-canteen hot!
Despite the heat, it is a surprisingly beautiful landscape.
And if you know some of the secrets, you can always find ways to chill.
You’ll find one of these every kilometer or so.
Llanos des Cortez, up the road from Bagaces, Guanacaste.
The Lonely Planet Guide says “if you can only get to see one waterfall in Costa Rica,
make it this one (4-wheel drive required!)”
And here, along the way, is a geography lesson in  one photograph:
So take a look at the photograph above. The camera is near the Pacific coast, facing east. Westerly winds blow inland from the sea behind — often fierce, gusty winds. They rush up against the mountains over there, don’t have a whole lot of options, so head on over them.  At the top they meet the colder, high altitude air. Warm, moist meets cold — cue the rain forests (3000+ mm of rain a year) at Monteverde, which is generally what you’re looking at way off in the distance).
Wish me luck!
So Iet me get this straght. I’m up here in Liberia tonight. To get to Palo Verde tomorrow,  I have to be on the road at 6 am, drive down  to Filadelfia (neat name!), and look for a gas station on the right called Sela, or maybe something else. I’m to wait at this gas station called Sela, or maybe something else, until someone shows up who is then supposed to lead me for an hour through a rabbit warren of 4-wheel drive-accessible roads to a wharf where there may or may not be a boat available to transport me out to the wetlands.
Cheez, the things I do for you guys.
Full report tomorrow night.

At least I know where the turnoff is. Doesn’t bode all that well for the signage.