We have spent the last two nights at Trogon Lodge, in the mountains of Costa Rica. Elevation is over 7,000 feet here. It gets down into the low forties at night. We have a space heater and receive nightly hot water bottles. This lodge is not where our tour normally stays, but it must book this resort often enough, because it is featured in some of their advertising videos. Watching those vids alerted us to the need to bring wool caps and gloves to the tropics.
Down the road, is the Savegre Lodge and home to the founding family for this area. Their story was related to us by the eldest child from their second generation. In the fifties land was being given away under the Costa Rican homestead act. Two brothers married two sisters and then moved here. They were the pioneers. At first just the brothers came here and lived in a cave. After five years, the men built a shack and were able to coax their wives and families to join them. The speaker, the eldest brother’s eldest son hated the place. They practiced subsistence farming by raising dairy cows. Cheese from the cows could be sold for money.
On one of these trips to town, a man gave them a plastic bag of trout fingerings. The trout flourished in the local river and soon tourists were showing up to fish. The family began a restaurant to feed these tourists. Then a lodge was built to house them. In the eighties eco-tourists began arriving. Never a smooth process, things continued to improve even until today.