Thursday, January 29, 2009

Punta Blanco

I finally made it to Mal Pais. There have been a lot of people telling me that I need to go there, and there was a festival two weeks ago that I missed, but I’m here now. If you look on a map, which you might not do, then you can find Mal Pais on the western facing side of the tip of the Nikoya Penninsula. I started on the eastern side, in Montezuma, then made my way down towards the tip, to a place called Caboya, where I walked out through the water and came to a little island there. The diving is spectacular, it is where I got the big blue jack before, but my mission was to camp out this time. Also, I was feeling sick, with the sort of flu symptoms of headache and fever and sore throat. So I stayed out of the water. Anyways, I got to the island and a big welcome sign was there, for the graveyard. So I would be sleeping among the deceased. How nice. The island is tiny, and the graveyard basically covers the whole thing, so I made camp on the far side, and started reading some of the books I borrowed from Marla and Mark. The next morning I was surprised to see some people walking along the shore right next to me, and I discovered that they were tourists, and they were going to Punta Blanco. The point at the end of the Peninsula. So I managed to get a ride to the park, where I payed my $10 begrudgingly and hiked for two hours in the rainforest to get to the little beach near the point. Then I left the new friends I’d made and headed out for the tip. I was going to swim out to the island out there, but its about a mile or so offshore from the point, so I decided that maybe not. I figured that some people would come by, so I did a good job of hiding my stuff, but three nights there and only one guy came by, he was a tourist, and he was doing the hike around the point. Fish all over the point came nicely close to me, confident that since the Blue Jack had broken my spear, I was done. But Not So! I delved into my engineering background and scoured the shoreline for stuff I could use, and since my spear was broken and therefore shorter, I made the gun shorter so it could fit. I didn’t want to cut the original piece, so I found a stout piece of wood, which is fantasticly wonderful wood, I should add, and carved it to fit. Then I had to carve the stainless rod to fit the gun trigger mechanism and the rubber band, and I was all set. Would it work?
Yes. I got a bunch of fish, pretty easily actually. The power is less, but its still enough at close range to get them all the way through. I also got two lobsters, some nice big ones, which tasted pretty good. And after I got one of the lobsters, I tried out my hand line, and I threw in the line weighted with a stainless steel nut and a little lobster meat and on the second throw I got it caught on the bottom, so I pulled in a little harder and the bottom started swimming away! It was a nice big bass. It looked just like the bass that I used to go after in Lake Whatcom (my home town lake) but big. I also made a lobster trap, and I spent a whole day doing it, out of a half of a barrel I found and some pieces of the black plastic netting-fencing material. I also managed to find some nice bouys and a lot of rope, so everything was found materials. I took it out into 30 ft of water and everything was ready to go, then set it down, weighed it with rocks and went fishing. I got some fish and put the pieces in the trap, and waited out the night. The next day I awoke, looked out and saw the bouy was still there, and went out to check. It was full of sand, tipped over and empty of both bait and lobsters. Oh pity. Sometimes, though the work of crafting is more fun than the end product. Then I walked the 4 hours from the point to Mal Pais, today, and came back to society. I met this guy, Marco, who called me “hunter” and I really like the term, because coming from him its not about going out with big guns and killing deer or wasting lots of gas and noise and stuff to capture animals. Its about going out in the jungle and being crafty and sneaky. Now I’m in a hostel and I’ll stay here a few days, because the surfing is good. I surfed this evening and it was really good for me. I’ll go again tomorrow.

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