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Specops Costa Rica:

Big Adrenaline Rush! & Survival Trekking

New: Basic Survival Training with Mykel Hawke

Photo Gallery from Costa Rica: The Big Adrenaline Rush!

Survival Trekking the Osa Peninsula


Day 1 - (San Jose, Costa Rica) Arrival and Map Reading Guests are picked up by a SpecOps representative, who then escorts you to the luxurious Meliá Confort Corobicí Resort. After check-in, the remainder of the day is reserved for relaxing by the pool, working out in the fully equipped Spa, or souvenir shopping. Guests need to plan their flights to arrive no later than 4:00 p.m. (Costa Rica time). If this cannot be arranged, then we suggest making plans to arrive the night prior (at guest's expense) or you will miss the initial briefing and Map Reading introduction and may have to make special arrangements for transport to the resort.

Map reading and navigation skillsAt approximately 5:30 p.m., the SPECOPS instructor provides the in-briefing, which includes introductions to the other Survival Trekkers, to Costa Rica and the Osa Peninsula, as well as a detailed itinerary of the Survival Trekking program. This is followed by a 2-hour Map Reading introduction. Dinner will be provided at the resort. The remainder of the evening is available for relaxation or a night-on-the-town.

Day 2 - (Carate Beach) Travel to Carate Beach After an incredibly tasty breakfast buffet, we hop aboard a small plane for a scenic 50-minute flight over forest-covered mountains and along the blue Pacific coast to the town of Puerto Jimenez on the eastern side of the Osa Peninsula. After a typical Costa Rican lunch and time for purchasing last-minute personal provisions in the "Old West" dirt road town of Puerto Jimenez, we take a two-hour truck ride to beautiful Carate Beach.

The reminder of the day and night is available for a relaxing walk on the deserted dark brown sand beaches, a walk to the nearby laguna to look for crocs, or simply sitting by a crackling fire under a blanket of stars listening to each others fabricated stories and sounds of the jungle.

Day 3 - (Carate Beach) Land Navigation, Food Preparation & Primitive Cooking After semi-delicious jungle cooking, the group heads on a trail into the hills for more land navigation practice and an introduction to GPS (Global Positioning Systems). Upon return, there will be a pig roast and more time for relaxation or questions regarding map reading and land navigation. Anyone wishing to participate in the food preparation is more than welcome to assist and learn primitive cooking methods.

Day 4 - (La Sirena Ranger Station) Jungle Trek, Wilderness First Aid After breakfast, the group heads out on foot to La Sirena Ranger Station. Those who would rather take a boat ride have the option to travel with the gear for the 30 minute ride. The remainder of the group practices terrain association en route for the next five to six hours (20 km) as we trek in and of the jungle and along beautiful isolated beaches to La Sirena Ranger station. This is the best way to experience the rain forest watching monkeys playing in the trees and Scarlet Macaws screeching from the blue skies above.

Upon arrival at the Ranger station there is time to enjoy this remote area. Guests have an opportunity to enjoy hiking manicured rain forest trails and deserted beaches with rivers leading deep into the jungle. But chances are, lounging on the big wooden porch drinking copious amounts of water and rubbing potentially sore feet will be the preferred activity. Park guards are available to provide information on wildlife studies conducted by university students and the national park service. Lodging at the ranger station is rustic with all meals provided by the national park service. The evening entails two hours of wilderness first aid lectures provided in a relaxed atmosphere.

Day 5 - (La Sirena Ranger Station) Wilderness First Aid The entire day is reserved for Wilderness First Aid instruction followed by a written exam to receive certification through the National Safety Council.

Day 6 - (Drake Bay) Boat transfer to Drake Bay, Jungle Survival Introduction After breakfast, the Group is picked up by boat and transferred 45 minutes to Drake Bay on the western tip of the Osa Peninsula. After checking in, the remainder of the day is reserved for relaxation. The evening consists of an informal lecture on jungle survival techniques and demonstration of survival gear while guests enjoy refreshments in an open-bar atmosphere.

Day 7 - (Drake Bay) Activity Day The day is available for a variety of activities to include scuba diving or snorkeling at Caño Island's marine biological reserve where visibility often ranges from 40 to 60 feet. It's not uncommon to have dolphins escort boats to a marine-rich underwater environment where divers frequently see sharks, giant manta rays and a variety of other marine animals.

Scuba diving and snorkeling at Caņo Island's marine preserveGuests can also hike under the island's rain forest canopy and visit the mysterious spheres and pre-Columbian burial grounds. Drake Bay also provides the opportunity for world-class deep sea fishing, canopy tour, horseback riding and many other adventure activities. For some, this will be the perfect opportunity to simply read a book and enjoying the spectacular view.

Day 8 - (Drake Bay) Jungle Survival The morning begins with breakfast followed by a hike into the rain forest to a specially designed primitive base camp. Guests learn how to prepare for remote location activities, how to pack survival kits and use its contents, as well as food and water procurement, fire and shelter building and signaling techniques.

Day 9 - (San Jose) Boat ride and flight to San Jose, Graduation Dinner
The Costa Rica: whitewater rafting, canopy tours, surfing, sear kayaking, mountain bikingtrip home begins with an incredible boat ride, which begins in the Pacific Ocean and winds its way through the Sierpe River's mangrove swamps to the town of Sierpe. After a short taxi ride and a 45-minute flight we arrive San Jose and head back to the Meliá Confort Corobicí Resort where guests can enjoy the fully equipped Spa with outdoor lap pool, Jacuzzi and steam room. A graduation dinner at a local restaurant concludes the Survival Trekking adventure followed by a farewell night on the town.

Day 10 - Depart Costa Rica Anyone wishing to stay in Costa Rica to enjoy activities such as whitewater rafting, canopy tours, surfing, sea kayaking, mountain biking or visits to exotic locations, can make reservations through Incredible Adventures before arrival.

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Photos copyright Jay Dickman.