Hiking was one of the most common activities during my study abroad trip. In order to find elusive birds and animals, it was often necessary to go for an hour hike, sometimes even getting off the trail for a while; however, for me the most interesting hikes weren’t through dense woods or off trail, it was hikes at night in the dark. We often didn’t go far, and stuck to local, easy trails or even the road itself when searching for wild animals, but it was crazy how many different animals came out at night. Insects in particular were much more active at night and we got to see amazing, gigantic grasshopper that blended into the leaves, queen leaf cutter ants searching for a new home, and even beetles as large as my hand. I’m not a big bug fan myself, but it was still amazing to see how many insects would come out once it was dark. Another animal that became much more prominent were frogs. Usually, we would stand still and wait until the frogs started chirping in order to find them, and there was usually a bunch. We found all sorts of tree frogs and even some poison dart frogs hidden under leaves. On one particular hike in the cloud forest, we found a pair of owls, known as mottled owls. We used an interesting technique suggested by our guide, in which we all turned off our flashlights and stood completely still in pitch darkness. I was standing with a couple of friends when we heard the owl, but we had no idea it was an owl. We just heard a loud sound nearby and instantly took off running towards the other side of the street. When our guide turned on his flashlight we saw the noise had come from an owl perched on the wire just above our head. It was amazing since it hadn’t been there just a minute prior! The night hikes were definitely a bit scary at first, but by the end of the trip, they were probably my favorite activity.