Tag Archives: El Valle Antón

Mariposario / Butterfly Haven

Jan 28 – I’m hobbling like Grampa from The Real McCoys today (who is old enough to get that reference?), so we won’t be traveling very far.

Lucky for us, we are just down the road from the Butterfly Haven.

The owner, an Italian, bought this place two years ago and has been raising 15 species of butterflies and releasing the surplus to the wild. He spent all the time we wanted showing us the different species and answering questions.
The butterflies seem to like him
The Blue Morpho looks like an owl’s eye when at rest so predators won’t mess with it
The Blue Morpho really likes Jim!
Some feed on fermenting fruit
Others prefer feeding from little tubes of honey water
Some tiny ones
So many different kinds!
We saw some really big caterpillars, and a PBS movie on the lifecycle of the butterfly
The cocoons are wrapped to keep them safe
The Blue Morpho was definitely my favorite!

A gentle activity on a peaceful day.

La India Dormida

Jan 27 – After a day of rest, today was a day for action! We had an early breakfast and set out for El Valle’s most famous hike, up La India Dormida. Although the reviews called the hike ‘challenging, steep, rocky, and moderate to difficult’, Jim assured me that it would be no problem for an experienced hiker like me. Famous last words.

We walked all the way through town, then down a road another mile to the start of the trail.

There’s La India
We paid the $3 per person entrance fee and off we went
A big boulder contained ancient petroglyphs, sheltered from the weather by the slant of the rock face.
This is believed to be an ancient map
More petroglyphs – what do you think they represent?
The trail started out benignly…
…but soon we were scrabbling over big rocks
A pretty waterfall
Up and up we go!
Another petroglyph boulder
We reached a clearing where we could see across the valley. At this point, I called ‘no mas!’- I could go no further.
Others must have had the same idea, as there was a very uncomfortable bench built here.
Jim was determined to get to the summit, and continued the climb for another half hour. I waved farewell and sat on my bench.
Jim graciously shared his pix of the summit ridge…
…and the town in the valley below

Jim climbed back down, all happy, and we ate our lunch on the bench. You might think that scrabbling down is easier than climbing up, and sometimes you’d be right, but the muscles at the front of my thighs had already given all they had to give, and our descent was painfully slow.

Stopping for a breather – at least one of us is smiling

We finally made it down, then only had to walk one more mile to get back home. It was a long mile! We stopped halfway for a strawberry ice cream cone, which made me feel better, then home for a hot shower, which made me feel better still.

An interesting day.