The 250 foot tall San Luis waterfall is located near the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve, in the hills above the small farming community of San Luis on property owned by Cristina y Geovani Mendez. A pleasant yet mildly challenging hike through transitional forests from seasonally dry, cloud and rain forests is required to view the falls. The hike begins at the local school and covers a round-trip distance of slightly over 4 miles. The trail has numerous moderate “ups and downs,” some more challenging sections, and a final steep section of about 300 feet distance before arriving at the waterfall base. At an elevation of near 2500 feet elevation the climate is generally comfortable and neither very hot nor cold (usually between 70-80˚ F) and mostly sunny from late Dec. through April. Wildlife one may see during the hike includes colorful butterflies (at times the giant metallic blue morpho is abundant here), two-toed sloths, white-faced monkeys, and a variety of birds from the Caribbean and Pacific slopes and cloud forest. The San Luis River, considered one of the cleanest rivers in Costa Rica, has three areas in this sector that are excellent for swimming (except during occasional heavy rains). We suggest using sturdy hiking shoes (all terrain types are best as the trail crosses through several streams) and bring insect repellent. If you wish to go swimming also bring a bathing suit, sandals and a towel. You should also take along bottled water and a snack. This guided trip takes a total time of about 2.5 to 3 hours and is for hikers in good physical condition.
San Luis Waterfall
The Red-crowned Woodpecker (Melanerpes rubricapillus) is a resident breeding bird from southwestern Costa Rica to Colombia. Adults are 20.5 cm long and weigh 48g. They have a zebra-barred black and white back and wings and a white rump. The tail is black with some white barring, and the underparts are pale buff-brown.