Tag Archives: Playa La Barqueta

Kayaking in La Barqueta

Last Thursday, I had a real adventure. My friend Ken, asked if I would like to go kayaking. Since I had never been kayaking and wanting to put another notch on my adventure belt, I quickly agreed. There were four in our party. Ken, Jim ( a tourist from Pennsylvania) and Rey, who I wrote about in a previous post.

We took two single person kayaks and one two-seater. As I said before, this was my first time and there were some lessons learned, that will better prepare me, if I do it again.

The first thing I should have known, but didn’t, was that you cannot go kayaking and not get wet. I knew that we were going to be in gentle waters and I just didn’t give it much thought. I knew that a kayak was a small shallow boat. With this type of boat, you are going to get wet. That is lesson one. Don’t have anything on you that can’t afford to be in water.

The second thing is that the riding position in a kayak is like forming a figure “L”. Therefore you should be prepared to ride for a long time with your back straight and your legs straight in front of you. Lesson two was that I should have been a little more limber.

The third thing is so obvious, that doesn’t need mentioning, but I didn’t properly prepare even though it is something I normally do well. That is, if you are going to be out in a boat for several hours, make sure you have adequately covered any exposed areas with sunscreen. The lesson I learned here is that means 100% of the exposed areas. I did well on my face, neck and arms, But I forgot my legs and having bare legs covered with salt water for 4 hours, did a job on me.

If you go kayaking, please remember these three things.

And so we were off. I had been told that there was a good possibility that we would get to see fair amount of wild life. There are crocodiles in them there waters, and I had my camera ready to capture them. I also knew on a previous outing they had come across howler monkeys and anteaters. I was ready. Plenty of camera memory and batteries.

We drove a short way past the Las Olas resort and back into a more raw area of the country. We came into a clearing and there was a small peer. Here are a few photos of the starting point.
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What A Great Day

Yesterday evening, I was invited to have dinner in La Barqueta. I had the Thanksgiving Dinner that I didn’t have on Thanksgiving Day. It caused me to reflect and I think that this was the first turkey and dressing and all the fixings dinner I have had in over 5 years. Everything was absolutely perfect.

Here is an interesting tidbit about yesterday’s event. One of the other guests, that I met, was born in Muskogee, Oklahoma. Now what are the odds of having two gringos meet in Panama and both of them were born in Muskogee, Oklahoma. It just goes to show you how small this world really is.

The evening was absolutely beautiful. The weather in Panama sure beats the weather that Oklahoma is having now.

Most likely in honor of two Okies from Muskogee being in this small beach at the same time, there was a Panamanian flyby. This isn’t the same as the Blue Angles, but I thought it was better.

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Take a look at this pretty sunset looking over the Pacific. Boy oh boy, it just doesn’t get any better than this.

An Afternoon At Playa La Barqueta

Being Sunday, for my drive today, I decided to go out to Playa La Barqueta. I think the last time I was there, was a year ago when I took photos of Maricial releasing turtles into the sea. More about that later.

On my drive today, I did find a couple of things that I had never seen before. The first photo is of sugar cane, but it is flowering. I have seen sugarcane growing before, but this was the first time I ever saw long lines with flowers on them.

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First Turtle Hatchling Release For 2006

Turtles ready to race in 2005

The following was posted on the Gringos in David Yahoo group.

This is an update of sea turtle hatchling release information. The first release is coming up SOON. Marcial has some nests that are due to hatch this weekend. Therefore, he is looking at letting them go on
Monday OR Tuesday at 5:30 pm. The exact day is not known at this time. This is just to let you know, if you’re interested, so you can plan accordingly. However, as soon as I know for sure which day it will be, I will post again. If you’re interested and need directions, please contact me at siouxwaligora @ yahoo.com.

This is truly something you won’t want to miss. Come on out and show your support for local conservation efforts!

I agree that this is an experience that you should not miss if you have the opportunity to see it.

Here is the entry related to one of the 2005 releases that I attended.

Here is a poem I wrote about Maricial after attending the event.

The Great Race at Playa La Barqueta

Note of apology before I begin: I apparently had a spot on my camera lens and you will see a small spot in the right center of the shots. My dad always used to say, “Nothing is perfect, some things less so than others.”

Playa La Barqueta

What an outstanding day I had today. A friend had notified that there would be another tortoise release at Playa La Barqueta. I drove from David and arrived about I arrived about 3:15PM. The road is pretty good, but in some areas there are still a lot of holes. I thought it was funny that in one of the areas that had a fair amount of holes, I saw this radar sign. Anyone speeding here is on horse, not in a car.
Speed Sign

I asked at one of the restaurants on the beach, if there was a man named Maricial and this young man said that that was he. I told him I had heard that there was going to be a tortoise release today and asked if that was true. He beamed and said it was true and asked if I would be interested in seeing the little tortoises. Of course, I did.

Here is a photo of the container with all of them limbering up for the great race to the sea. There must have been around a hundred. I May have the number wrong, so you count them and let me know the correct number.
Box of turtles

I took a photo of one on the side of the box so you could see a close-up. It is about the size of a silver dollar.
Single Turtle

One of the other observers that had been to the previous release, that I had missed, took me around to where Maricial has his tortoise orchard. He marks off squares and buries the eggs he finds in one of the squares and marks the date on a stick and places it in the square also. He said that about 45-50 days after he buries the eggs, the hatchlings arrive. He keeps them in a container with a little water until they are about 5 days old and then he releases them.
Turtle orchard

Here are a few photos of the race to the sea.

I recorded a short video. (it is about 2.7 meg in size so it might take a while to download)

If you get out to the Playa La Barqueta area, look up Maricial at his restaurant and tell him you saw the event on the Internet and tell him you appreciate what he is doing to conserve this animal. He does this because he is continuing a family tradition of his father and his grandfather.

Maricial was interviewed by one of the local stations and I got this photo of Maricial just as it had completed. That is Maricial just to the cameraman’s left.
Maricial and cameraman