Chirripo National Park

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South Costa Rica : Chirripo National Park
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Parque National Chirripo is in South Costa Rica.

Understand

History

Augutin Blessing was the first white person who climbed the Chirripo Mountain back in 1904.

Landscape

In this National Parc is the highest peak of Costa Rica, the Chirripo Mountain with 3727m (12,228 ft). This makes it the highest in the range between Guatemala and the Andes. Chirripo National Park boast great biodiversity, including Talamanca forest and Costa Rica Páramo forest. Three forest fires have devastated the region in recent years, with the latest being in 2012.

Flora and fauna

In lower altitudes you find a dwarf cloudforest habitat. From 3400 m up the vegetation changes and to higher altitudes plants and shrubs as opposed to forest. The Resplendent Quetzal may be seen in the lower cloudforest regions. Monkeys, toucanets, trogons and several other species may be found in the lower altitudes.

Climate

From January till April dry. May - December very humid. On the top it could be very cold (down to -9 C°).

Get in

There are buses from San Isidro de El General. In between San Isidrio and San Gerardo de Rivas are several "cabinas" for overnight accommodations.

You are not allowed to hike up to the Refugio after midday.

Fees/Permits

Entrance and one night overnight stay at the Refugio costs 25 USD (15 for entrance and 10 for a stay at the base camp). Permits must be obtained in San Gerardo de Rivas.

Get around

Following the main trail will take up to 12 hours in poor conditions for slow hikers. Fit or experienced hikers may complete it in 6-7 hours. Follow the sign that says "Trail to Chirripo" and begin the La Cuesta del Agua uphill stretch for 2 hours. The climb crests at Monte Sin Fe. Finish the trek for the day at the Chirripo Shelter and Base Camp, 6 km below the summit. Rise the next day before dawn and trek the rest of the way to the summit. It will take about 1-2 hours to do the ascent.

See

La Amistad International Park Cloudforest, Costa Rica Paramo, Monte Sin Fe, Rabbit Valley, Cerro Terbi. You will get a vista of the Pacific and Atlantic Ocean from the top on a clear day.

Do

Hike up the highest mountain of Costa Rica.

Buy

Eat

This operates on a pack it in, pack it out philosophy. There is no place to purchase food, so you must bring all your own supplies on the hike.

Drink

Sleep

The Chirripo Shelter/Base camp offers basic bunk accommodations in a shared facility. Registering in advance with the park service in San Gerardo de Rivas will ensure that there is adequate space for the night you intend to stay. Be sure to bring sleeping bags with you.

Lodging

At an altitude of ~ 3450 m there is a lodge where you can stay overnight and then hike up to the peak in the morning.

Camping

Tent camping is prohibited.

Backcountry

Stay safe

It is best not to hike alone, and recommended to go with a local guide. The weather conditions can create an extreme (and cold) environment on the top of the peak and having a knowledgeable guide can be an asset in an emergency. Adventure Life offers guided 3 and 4 day packages with accommodations at Pelicano Lodge before and after the summit.

Get out

Walk down to the exit and take the bus back to the civilization.



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