Showing posts from December, 2016

It sure has been great Belize, but it's time to go

San Ignacio, Belize to Melchor de Mencos, Guatemala.
19.6 kilometers ridden.
I started out slowly getting ready before taking a final shower in the small bathroom by my room. The ability to get the water temperature to something other than arctic blast or surface of the sun seems to be getting worse each day. We went out for breakfast at a place called pops. It was the most western place I had been too in weeks. It had vinyl diner booths in a deep red color that would be at home in any greasy spoon in the US. I ate a bacon and cheese omelet with pancakes but paid more for it than I would have at a less Americanized place.
We went back to our hotel and Aaron, Ed, and I sat around exchanging digital files of our photos and videos so we each had copies of everyone’s media from Belize. It took a long time so as each of us finished we set off separately to be ready to leave. I was the last one out at past 12:30 but when I got up to Ed's hostel he and Aaron were both still there. W…

Expat TIG welders, Giant caves, and other adventures in Belize

San Ignacio, Bel.
108.5 kilometers ridden.
Morning started off with a trip up the street for the cheap breakfast Christine had told me about, it was a breakfast burrito and a large lime juice for the equivalent of about $2.50 US. The burrito was basic but tasty and the lime juice was a refreshing start to the day.
After the beating the rough road gave the little C90, I went on a walkabout with Ed and Aaron to go get the exhaust on Ninty fixed. It took most of the morning but we ended up getting some clues and finding a Canadian welder who had emigrated to Belize. He did a great job TIG welding the exhaust and it came out looking better than new. 

We managed to get a little twisted up on the route before walking across the low wooden bridge that had carried us into town. Along the way we wandered through a market with lots of hand crafts and cheap Chinese products. I could tell I was in a more tourist oriented town than most I had stayed in so far.  I wasn't interested in an…

Waterfall skinny dipping and other slick adventures

San Ignacio, Belize.
106.6 kilometers ridden.
Woke up and got in a quick bit of relaxing before it was time to start getting ready to ride. Ed, Aaron, and I would be heading out to Big Rock Falls and 1000 Foot Falls on the bikes. I got most of the prep done and found out that Aaron had already eaten breakfast so I walked around to the bar and restaurant combo we had been drinking at the night before. I got an omelet with bacon, cheese and veggies and a side of "toast bread". The toast bread was more like fry bread and was very good.
I went back to the hotel and Ed had arrived. We finished prepping the bikes but Ed and Aaron then want to go for a few things so we ended up at a smoothie shop where the guys grabbed wraps and I had a smoothie. Service took the usual forever I have come to expect in Belize but the smoothie was good. We went and geared up before setting off from the hotel Tropicool.
The ride out was spectacular and full of both twisty canyon type passes o…

Moving inland

Placencia, Belize to San Ignacio, Belize
198.3 kilometers ridden.
Last night was incredibly hot so we opened up the doors to the bunk house. It brought us a nice breeze but with it came the mosquitoes. The whole night was spent tossing and turning. Either being too hot from having the sheet over my whole body and head to stop the bug bites, to shedding it and being eaten alive.
I got up and moving around 8 and made my way to the bathroom to put my contacts in and get ready. The original plan had been to get moving early in the day and make it to San Ignacio by mid-day. But early is such a vague term....

I dressed went for water at the bar by the pool. Despite the early hour, a women with glasses, long brown hair and looking to be in her early to mid-twenties was there with a large amount of baggage. She was talking to the bar keep as I slid up and began to drink water and use the Wi-Fi to catch up. When Aaron got up and moving we talked a bit about what to do for breakfast. With…

The Cape Cod of Belize

Punta Gorda, Bel. to Placencia, Bel.
198.8 kilometers ridden.

We started the day by eating breakfast from what we had in our bags so we could get moving faster. We loaded the bikes quickly but it still seemed to take a long time to get moving. The day was sticky-hot and it wasn't even noon yet.

As we rode out of Punta Gorda we stopped several times for photos at signs and on piers. Aaron had some prior history with his father's military service at Cattle Landing so we stopped there as well to take photos. 

Leaving town we stopped and filled up with fuel and each had a cold drink and some ice cream. It was funny to have the staff at the gas station hear Aaron had ridden from England and not say anything but here I came from Alaska and get very excited. 

We headed out to the Farm Inn for Ed's soap dish he had gotten from Alaska. The ride was worth the whole trip south. The roads twisted among rolling hills and beside rivers lacing the rain forest. The pavement was smoo…

From touristville to slumsville in a short days ride

Hopkins, Belize to Punta Gordo, Belize
154.6 Kilometers ridden.
The plan was simple. We would get up early and make a ride for Punta Gordo where we could spend the day looking at the southern portions of Belize and take some photos of the sea.  Aaron and I had decided to ride together as Ed had already come from the south and would be doing his own thing.
Like all plans, it went to hell right away.
When it was time to get up the sound of rain pounding the small cabins roof was overwhelming. The dusty wooden shutters could do nothing to stop the water from reaching the sill and even dripping into the room. With a choice between an on time, but soaked, departure or sleeping in, sleep won. A cold shower, while a little better than a wet ride, is not the ideal way to start my waking day. A delicious hot breakfast would have been a perfect pick up to break from the dreary grey day, but stale from the package lemon cream cookies and a few peanuts was all I could manage to round up…

Hanging out at the Dodo

Hopkins, Belize – The Funky Dodo backpackers’ hostel.
Zero kilometers ridden.
While Aaron and I had both planned to move on today, a rest in this little hippie oasis that was The Funky Dodo seemed to be the answer we both needed.  Ed must have thought so too as he moved from his hostel up the road to join us at the Dodo.
It had been nice to sleep in a bit and I was looking forward to a shower. As I joined the land of the living I asked Christine how the showers were. 
“Great, nice and warm” was her response.
She had apparently gotten the first batch of water from the sun warmed tank.  I got the freezing cold water being dropped from the shower head as it was pumped from the well. It wasn’t my first cold shower of the trip by any means but it left me lots to rib Christine about as we walked up the street to get a breakfast of liquid yogurt from the shop. 

Once Ed got all checked in it was time for a walk to the beach at the center of town.  We took some photos before wander…

The Good, The Bad, and the Ninty

Chetumal, Mexico to Hopkins, Belize
274.9 Kilometers ridden.
I slept in too late again this morning and then fucked about getting stuff done in the morning.  I managed to take my meds without eating anything and it seemed to turn my stomach now that I have begun taking the mild anti-biotics I was prescribed as anti-malarial tablets.  I didn’t really get checked out of the hotel until about noon and then once I had the bike loaded I only went a few hundred meters up the road to stop at an Oxxo for a yogurt, a zero calorie Mexican energy drink, and a ham and cheese croissant out of the deli case.  Not gourmet but enough to calm my stomach within about 20 minutes of finishing and getting on the road.
The ride to the boarder with Belize was simple enough, though I found I hadn’t managed to add the Central American maps to my GPS yet so I was left with my phone as my only navigational aid.

The boarder itself wasn’t too bad as I tried to pull into the first building and was told I…