Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Visiting "La Angostura"

Sometimes we have natural marvels that remain secret despite how attractive they are. That is surely the case of La Angostura canyon in Penonome (Cocle province, central Panama). Close to Gloriela's dad "finca" (see the previous post), the mighty Zarati river runs along a tight rocky canyon after passing its narrowest point (no more than three meters wide), a tiny waterfall known as "La Angostura", which literally means "the narrowness". The Zarati river is quite famous due to all the local legends and narratives inspired on it, and because of the popular aquatic carnivals organized each year attracting thousands of visitors. However, this part of the river is little known, even by the panamanians, surely due to the complete lack of facilities for the visitor and the modest dirt access road passable with a high clearance vehicle, but the place is at walking distance from the main road to La Pintada (the entrance is marked by a chapel, opposite to a Jesus Christ statue, after the neighborhood of Vista Hermosa and before the entrance to Los Uveros town), crossing some pastureland and dry bushes until you reach a rocky formation that descends towards the river (you must use the steps carved in the stone). I visited the place last sunday, under a stifling sun, just for a couple of minutes, enough to appreciate the beauty of the place (also enjoyed by a Green Heron in the other side of the river) and to take these photos. The chocolate-brown tone of the water is due to the recent heavy rains in the area. The most accepted theory about the origins of this canyon states that the Zarati river excavated its way through the material deposited by the volcanic eruptions of the Guacamaya hill, five thousands of years ago. In some parts, the walls of the canyon reach 100 meters og height! So, next time you visit central Panama, specifically the Cocle province, try to visit La Angostura... is worth the effort.

1 comment: