ADVrider

Go Back   ADVrider > Riding > Ride reports
User Name
Password
Register Inmates Photos Site Rules Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 01-02-2013, 01:17 PM   #1
Catours OP
Guatemala Tourer
 
Catours's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2009
Location: Guatemala
Oddometer: 153
What 2 Moto Guides Do With A Week Off: Guatemala

As the titles says, we are two motorcycle tour guides at CATours in Antigua, Guatemala. We had the week off between Christmas and New Year's, of course we took off to explore the lesser known spots in this awesome country. If you like enduro style riding, this is one of the best routes I could imagine in Guatemala. We got a few suggestions from fellow inmates here in Guatemala - GuateRider and RichSuz, besides that we just took a map and figured it out along the way.

The riders:

Me (Chris), southern boy from GA with 3 years of guiding in Guatemala under his belt. Riding a 2007 Yamaha TTR250.



"Frenchy" (David), our guide from Quebec, riding his 2007 Suzuki DR200. By the way, he found out his mono shock was shot just before this trip. We priced one in the capital and Suzuki wants Q5,000 (~$650), what the f*#K. I found one on ebay for $50 and he decided to continue on the trip anyways, while it was in transit down here. Ever ridden on just the spring, Frenchy can tell you more.



The area:

We run a lot of trips out of Antigua to popular tourist destinations, mostly around the black circles - see below. We decided to check out a new area, NW from Antigua, crossing through the HueHue, Quiche, and Alta Verapaz regions - red circle.

__________________
Guatemala Motorcycle Adventures!

Chris
Marketing Guide, CATours
info@catours.co.uk
CATours Website
CATours Facebook
Our TripAdvisor page
Our Twitter page
Catours is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-02-2013, 03:19 PM   #2
Comrade Art
Working stiff
 
Comrade Art's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2006
Location: Oregon
Oddometer: 501
Guatemala is squeezed between 4 different countries so you don't hear to much about it.
Looking forward to your report and pics
__________________
Vietnam Adventure
Oregon BDR

"All human beings by nature desire to know" - Aristotle
Comrade Art is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-02-2013, 04:26 PM   #3
eakins
Butler Maps
 
eakins's Avatar
 
Joined: May 2002
Location: Fort Collins, Colorado
Oddometer: 17,528
awesome. i spent 3 weeks traveling around Guat. and looking forward to your RR. we did Flores/Tikal, Rio Dulce, Atitlan/Pana/San Pedro, Chicicastenango and Antiqua.
__________________
Butler Maps - motorcycle maps for riders by riders -
Alaska
AZ map COBDR AZBDR IDBDR South East map
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=598717
Butler Maps website:
http://www.butlermaps.com
eakins is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-02-2013, 04:33 PM   #4
Cal
Studly Adventurer
 
Joined: Mar 2008
Location: Calgary
Oddometer: 758
Great!
Guatemala is one of my favorite countries and I am also thinking of buying a DR200.
Cal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-03-2013, 07:01 AM   #5
Catours OP
Guatemala Tourer
 
Catours's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2009
Location: Guatemala
Oddometer: 153
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cal View Post
Great!
Guatemala is one of my favorite countries and I am also thinking of buying a DR200.
Where do you want to buy it? There are a lot down here and I think Frenchy will be selling in the next few months.
__________________
Guatemala Motorcycle Adventures!

Chris
Marketing Guide, CATours
info@catours.co.uk
CATours Website
CATours Facebook
Our TripAdvisor page
Our Twitter page
Catours is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-02-2013, 07:25 PM   #6
eddie98
Studly Adventurer
 
Joined: Jan 2007
Location: WOODSTOCK, GA
Oddometer: 625
what part of GA are you from?
__________________
09 DL 650,08 WR250R
09 KLX250S(gone), 03 R6 (gone)
04 WR 450(gone), 01 EX 250(gone),
06 DL 650(gone) , 89 KLR 650(gone)
eddie98 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-03-2013, 06:58 AM   #7
Catours OP
Guatemala Tourer
 
Catours's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2009
Location: Guatemala
Oddometer: 153
Quote:
Originally Posted by eddie98 View Post
what part of GA are you from?
Grew up in Savannah and then lived in Atlanta for about 12 years between school and work.
__________________
Guatemala Motorcycle Adventures!

Chris
Marketing Guide, CATours
info@catours.co.uk
CATours Website
CATours Facebook
Our TripAdvisor page
Our Twitter page
Catours is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-04-2013, 12:41 PM   #8
eddie98
Studly Adventurer
 
Joined: Jan 2007
Location: WOODSTOCK, GA
Oddometer: 625
Quote:
Originally Posted by Catours View Post
Grew up in Savannah and then lived in Atlanta for about 12 years between school and work.
Good to know. I've been in GA since 1992. I'm from Guate, most of my family is still down there. They live in Mixco/ San Lucas. Next time we are down in Antigua I'll look you up.
__________________
09 DL 650,08 WR250R
09 KLX250S(gone), 03 R6 (gone)
04 WR 450(gone), 01 EX 250(gone),
06 DL 650(gone) , 89 KLR 650(gone)
eddie98 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-05-2013, 08:28 AM   #9
Catours OP
Guatemala Tourer
 
Catours's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2009
Location: Guatemala
Oddometer: 153
Quote:
Originally Posted by eddie98 View Post
Good to know. I've been in GA since 1992. I'm from Guate, most of my family is still down there. They live in Mixco/ San Lucas. Next time we are down in Antigua I'll look you up.
Sounds good Eddie, small world. I have some motorcycle friends up in San Lucas, the Rivas family that has the German Shepherd school.
__________________
Guatemala Motorcycle Adventures!

Chris
Marketing Guide, CATours
info@catours.co.uk
CATours Website
CATours Facebook
Our TripAdvisor page
Our Twitter page
Catours is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-05-2013, 12:01 PM   #10
rebel346
Adventurer
 
rebel346's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2007
Location: Bristow,VA
Oddometer: 70
Small world!

Quote:
Originally Posted by eddie98 View Post
Good to know. I've been in GA since 1992. I'm from Guate, most of my family is still down there. They live in Mixco/ San Lucas. Next time we are down in Antigua I'll look you up.
Hey Eddie, I used to be on GSB with you when I lived in Woodstock. Matter of fact we rode Blood Mountain and up into Tennessee a time or two together.

Chris, I also grew up just outside of Savannah, cool RR keep it coming.

Cheers!

Earl
rebel346 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-06-2013, 08:01 AM   #11
eddie98
Studly Adventurer
 
Joined: Jan 2007
Location: WOODSTOCK, GA
Oddometer: 625
Quote:
Originally Posted by rebel346 View Post
Hey Eddie, I used to be on GSB with you when I lived in Woodstock. Matter of fact we rode Blood Mountain and up into Tennessee a time or two together.

Chris, I also grew up just outside of Savannah, cool RR keep it coming.

Cheers!

Earl
Your name sounds familiar. Didn't you used to live off of Town Lake pkwy? we had breakfast at Waffle House? What are you doing up in VA?
Nancy says hi also.
__________________
09 DL 650,08 WR250R
09 KLX250S(gone), 03 R6 (gone)
04 WR 450(gone), 01 EX 250(gone),
06 DL 650(gone) , 89 KLR 650(gone)

eddie98 screwed with this post 01-06-2013 at 08:06 AM
eddie98 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-07-2013, 10:20 AM   #12
Catours OP
Guatemala Tourer
 
Catours's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2009
Location: Guatemala
Oddometer: 153
Day 3: Laguna Lachua to Barillas

The sunset was priceless last night in Laguna Lachua, the sunrise wasn't bad either. We were told there were fish up to 2-3 meters in the lake. We hung out on the dock and watched in disbelief as the Sabalo fish were feeding, coming up to the surface showing their dorsal and tail fins.

example of a Sabalo


Between the fish, local ducks, and then the howler monkeys yelling in the background, it was a pretty sureal morning experience. I guess this is why they are really trying hard to protect this precious nature reserve. Here was our planned route for the day:



We hiked back to the bikes, funny how you miss 2 wheels when you have to hike a few kilometers. From the park entry we started heading West on the main road.

Leaving Laguna Lachua park


A quick breakfast in the middle of nowhere and then we started hitting gravel/dirt for a while.








We hit Rio Espiritu and ended up taking a "wrong" turn - turned out to be one of the best sections of riding in a long time. We continued on dirt along a beautiful river and then hit 25 kms of super new tarmac that twisted among the mountains, we had the whole place to ourselves! Eventually we came upon a deadend made up of a pile of boulders. Naturally we ride around that and decide to continue on. That lasted for a few kilometers of fun dirt until we were flagged down by some locals yelling "no hay paso" (you can't pass). Usually I would want to keep going, they seem to underestimate enduro motos here. But we were in the middle of thick, slushy mud and it looked like they were right! It took some effort to turn around, butit made the locals laugh and at least we got the bikes nice and dirty.

the dead end


the mud


are you sure it doesn't keep going!?


turning around, Frenchy style!




where I stopped


me getting out of the mud


We backtracked about 30 kms to our wrong turn and took the correct fork towards Barillas. More steep climbs to high elevations and really small windy mountain roads. This is when we started to realize we were in Land Cruiser country, literally every truck was a cool Toyo Land Cruiser.

1988 Land Cruiser, the guy was asking Q44,000 (~$5600)


We found a nice little hotel on the edge of town called "Santa Cruz" and unloaded our dirty gear. Nice rooms and secure parking next door in the garage, perfect for Q45.





Barillas is nothing spectacular, just a typical Guatemalan mountain town. We did find Q5 beers and a great Q20 burrito, we were happy campers!

Day 3 Stats:

- Q50 gas in Playa Grande
- Q30 breakfast
- Q65 gas just before Barillas
- Q45 hotel
- Q50 food/beer

163 kms, 5 1/2 ish hours riding
__________________
Guatemala Motorcycle Adventures!

Chris
Marketing Guide, CATours
info@catours.co.uk
CATours Website
CATours Facebook
Our TripAdvisor page
Our Twitter page

Catours screwed with this post 01-08-2013 at 01:55 PM
Catours is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-07-2013, 03:57 PM   #13
GuateRider
Beastly Adventurer
 
Joined: Jan 2008
Location: Antigua , Guatemala
Oddometer: 1,366
Thumb

Great pics I like your style !!
__________________
Guatemala-Alaska-Guatemala
GuateRider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-09-2013, 12:03 PM   #14
Catours OP
Guatemala Tourer
 
Catours's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2009
Location: Guatemala
Oddometer: 153
Day 4: Barillas to Soloma

I doubt our starting point and destination mean much to most readers, but if you look on a map they are only about 25 kms away from each other. Of course we didn't take the direct route! Here is the route we generally followed, you can see that we were very close to the Mexican border for parts of the day:



It ended up being one of our longer days, but trust me the riding was well worth it! First, a quick update on Santa Cruz hotel. The promised hot water didn't work, oh well I'm not that spoiled. We left town and continued West towards San Mateo Ixtatán and then onto Patalcal. This area is filled with mountain climbs, descents, and then more climbs - all the time with beautiful views.





In Patalcal we found ourselves at a split in the road, to the right we could see a blanket of fluffy white clouds above Mexico, so we decided to go for it.

Mexican clouds in the distance


This is the road towards Bulej and then to Aguacate. After a snack stop in Yalambojoch, Frenchy noticed another flat tire. This guy has some luck, I tell you. He thought he was lucky to find a pinchazo just down the road but it turned out to be manned by a teenager who had no clue how to change a tire. Instead we used his air compressor and took care of it ourselves, tough life eh?



After we sorted the tire we got back on the road and happened to see a sign for Finca Chaculá (see RichSuz's recommendation in another post) and decided to pop in to check it out.

Finca Chaculá


That worked out well and we got some really good advice on the local area and based on the guardian's tip we headed to El Cimmaron. Cimmaron is a deep hole in the middle of nowhere, perfectly round with 172 meters diameter and 180 meters deep. There is a fertile, fresh, and green forest at the bottom that is protected by the walls with no trails to go down. At the trail head from the highway, we decided to go as far as we could on the bikes. This was a fun rocky single track trial until we hit a really steep section that screamed "park the bikes and walk from here". We reluctantly obliged and started hoofing it on foot to the hole. It was more impressive than we expected but very difficult to capture in pictures. Hopefully these do it some justice.









From Cimarron we headed south on nice tarmac to Nenton. This is when our day took a turn for the better as we headed East on some amazing mountain passes. At one point we got to a "T", looked around and decided to go left. Once again this was technically the "wrong turn" but it turned out to be one of the best sections of riding in our whole ride. Essentially climbing up to ~4,000 meters, going back down, back up, over and over on small dirt roads. There was also some great Pine forest with really deep silty sand, fun for me but maybe not as much for Frenchy trailing behind sans rear suspension. We ended passing through San Sebastian Cuatonm, then Pet, and finally to Soloma. We had to agree that was one of our best days of riding ever!! Again, as the crow flies - Barillas to Soloma is only 25 kms but I can't imagine a better route than today's 208 kms! Unfortunately we don't have a lot of pictures, but trust me it was an amazing section of riding! We were too busy enjoying it.

this gives you a glimpse of the road, you can see a few sections:


Day 4 Stats:

- Q9 snack
- Q30 lunch
- Q65 gas just past Nenton
- Q40 gas in Soloma
- Q65 hotel
- Q15 tacos
- Q2 internet
- Q18 dinner
TOTAL: Q244, ~$31

208 kms, 6.5ish hours riding
__________________
Guatemala Motorcycle Adventures!

Chris
Marketing Guide, CATours
info@catours.co.uk
CATours Website
CATours Facebook
Our TripAdvisor page
Our Twitter page
Catours is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-2013, 07:36 AM   #15
richsuz
Adventurer
 
richsuz's Avatar
 
Joined: Apr 2009
Location: Guatemala
Oddometer: 97
Quote:
Originally Posted by Catours View Post
I doubt our starting point and destination mean much to most readers, but if you look on a map they are only about 25 kms away from each other. Of course we didn't take the direct route! Here is the route we generally followed, you can see that we were very close to the Mexican border for parts of the day:


On Jan 1st, We took off from Chaculá, Went from D to E on your map, but then on to C on a different road that takes you to the same spot with the fluffy clouds. the three way split. On to San Mateo Ixtatan. The longest day for us as well. 12 hour ride from Finca chaculá to El Unicornio Azul. Best riding day of my trip as well.

richsuz is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Share

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

.
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


Times are GMT -7.   It's 11:47 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ADVrider 2011-2014