September is the rainy season in Costa Rica and the rain is really pouring in La Fortuna. I won’t let it deter me from planning my sloth adventure. My entire goal for this trip is to see the cute, homely creature, so off I go into Sloth Territory.
Thankfully, when I reach the place promising a sloth sighting, the rain subsides, but with lingering clouds and mist. We meet Oscar who will guide us through the territory and help us find sloths hanging out in the trees.
My absolutely favorite sloth depiction are the sloths running the DMV in the Disney animated movie, Zootopia. Coincidentally, Jeff Corwin, host of Ocean Mysteries, introduced his audience to sloths in one of his episode reruns not long before I left for Costa Rica. He made it look like you could just walk up and pick one up out of a tree. I could hardly wait to lay my eyes on one!via GIPHY
As it turns out, sloths are not very easy to see during the rainy season, because they climb high into the trees. When it is sunny and warm, they tend to come down lower, but still, according to Oscar, they are rarely down low enough to touch one easily.
Off we went. Oscar pointed out a ton of Blue Jean frogs. They are really kind of cute and we began to wonder if they were all we would see. Finally, Oscar points his laser pointer up into the trees. He sees a sloth! Oscar hands me the binoculars because it is extremely high up in the branches and patiently tries to help me find it. He says it is there, but I sure don’t see it.
More Blue Jean frog sightings. And a lot of mosquitoes. The jungle is gorgeous, though. Even without seeing a sloth, I am happy to enjoy my time in the jungles of La Fortuna.
Another sloth is pointed out, but I still cannot see it. A third, and still no. My hope is diminishing. Oscar stops again and points upward. He shines his pointer up in the branches and, again, I try to find the elusive animal among the leaves. I see him (or her)! Just hanging out in the tree. Even Oscar is excited for me.
We continue walking and Oscar stops again, points into the branches and there’s a sloth. And I see it, without binoculars! He says she is pregnant and she’s moving, just like the sloths in Zootopia! I am so elated to see a sloth that I forget to take a photo.
Some moments just need to be experienced as it is, without looking through the viewfinder.