Monday, May 21, 2007

El Yunque Rain Forest in Puerto Rico

Almost two years ago - July of 2005 - I went to Puerto Rico. I have been meaning to share some photos with you but just hadn't gotten around to it, other than a brief post shortly after I returned.

Finally, something spurred me into action. Maybe it's that summer is around the corner and that makes the thought of the tropics more uppermost in mind. For whatever reason, I've been looking at photos tonight. I have some nice pix.

These were all taken at El Yunque Rain Forest. I wish I had had more time there, but it was lovely. These views were taken from the top of  the Yokahu Observation Tower.

The tower looks ancient, but it was built in 1962. You can climb the 96 steps and look out where you get these beautiful views of the clouds and the plants and the mixing of the two.

The day we were there it was raining off and on and the others in my group took refuge in the car. I couldn't stand not knowing what I'd see at the top of those stairs. I got very wet when the rain was coming down so hard it was coming through the open areas that serve as windows as you climb the spiral staircase. But I'm glad I persisted because the view was more than worth it.

Frankly, none of these photos do it justice.

In the park area around the tower, the rain gave flowers a dewy look, which I'd noticed earlier during my visit at other places. It rained a lot over the time I was there.

I couldn't resist some closeups of leaves a few days earlier when they were covered with rain drops.

It's the jungle, so there are lots of different kinds of plants and everything is moist and lush.

What you don't get a sense of from the things online about El Yunque is how "civilized" it is overall. I'm certain there are some places where it's more "wild," but you'll have to get off the beaten path to find them. The beaten path is paved over, as a matter of fact.

I was with other people so didn't get to do as much exploring as I would have liked. Most people start at the visitor's center, but my main memory of it is getting a cell phone call that some projects I had going in my house had run into some difficulties. That should tell you two things -
1. I had cell phone signal so it's not the wild jungle you might expect
2. There was nothing there that was keeping my attention sufficiently to keep me from answering the phone

You can see some beautiful scenery, even without getting off the pavement.

I have more photos to share and I'll try to get to them before another two years passes. Looking at all these has made me want to go on a trip again.

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