|08-31-2004, 09:30 AM||#1|
Old School Adventurer
Joined: Jan 2004
Location: Hayward, WI
Full report-5 Weeks Mexico & Belize
This report is a little late but it was a good ride and I hope itā€™s worth the full report. Enjoy.
Full report-5 Weeks Mexico & Belize
One day in early Sept. I was eating lunch at my workplace cafeteria with some friends. I was expounding about these cool motorcycle trips I've gone on and all the bikes I have when my buddy Luke said "So...., how long has it been since your last big cruise?". In horror I figured over twenty years. I said out loud some thing like ā€œWhat the hell am I doing?ā€
My wife always wanted me to ride a Harley, she feels funny tooling up front at the big Minneapolis biker bars with my modified and old XS650. I thought it was cool But ā€¦.. what else do I need, maybe a brain? I Picked up a 95ā€™ XL1200 with under 5K miles on it for a song, or should I say one of those 0% credit cards. I booked a flight for my Wife to Vegas and I remember telling her ā€œA team of wild horses couldnā€™t keep me from riding out there.ā€ She thought I was nuts.
The Adventure Begins:
A week or so passes then 9/11/01. (Thinking about life). 9/25/01 Iā€™m riding to Vegas and doing a two and a half week camping cruise along the way. Cheaa! Liking life. Now three months later I'm having a restructuring at work. I'm Hearing I don't have to do much more then show up for the next six months until we start our new thing. OK ......Yo! ....Helloooo...! Time for THE BIG Cruise. Central America has been a fantasy of mine since I was sixteen. While cruising solo to Yellowstone on my R5-350 and checking out the road atlas I borrowed from my Dad, I'll never forget the feeling I had when I saw you can drive all the way through Central America. Thinking about finding places to camp and communicating with Mexican's kind of gave me a chill, but I knew some day I would cruise south of the border. The TIME is NOW! I Have ... No .....Excuses.
One month later, two new dual sport tires, an oversized gas tank, a can of flat black paint and flaming skull decals, I'm ready to roll!
Digging the bike out of the snow - northern Wisconsin January, 2002
My excitement is reaching a boil, Iā€™ve never been to Mexico before and all that bike preparation in such a short time and to a bike Iā€™ve never worked on before, whoe. Iā€™m just hoping that new tank I painted and that weird petcock I put in wont leak. I canā€™t sleep and was on the road before 5:00 AM. Heading south in my rusty 86ā€™ full size Blazer. Iā€™m pulling the 1200 on a converted $100 snowmobile trailer (this is January in the north) I bought from a buddy a couple weeks ago. With the back seat out of the Blazer I have a great little camper.
Taking the fast route to Texas, I35 south to San Antonio, then to Mc Allen where I unload the bike.
Near the border a 10ā€™ X 30ā€™ storage unit awaits me "The Best Little Warehouse in Texas". This is where the Internet is great. I pick a spot on a map close where I think I want to store my truck, go to yahoo!, click on ā€˜yellow pagesā€™ select a City near that place then search the yellow pages for keyword ā€˜self storageā€™. The place I picked has an employee working there 6 days a week ready to check me in anytime during business hours. Checking in was smooth. With my own padlock I just paid for my 5 weeks storage and was given a pass code to let me into the automatic security gate. Bingo, pulled her right in to the unit, trailer attached.
Now I got this calm cool heightened awareness setting in. Iā€™m here plenty early, get the bike off the trailer and loaded up. Iā€™m still looking over my guide books and maps having all these wild ideas of what the places are going to be like over the routes I take. My mind and body are on full alert, Iā€™m so alive. My Spanish is ready, my documents are ready, Go.
The border is less than 20 miles away, I get up early Sunday morning and head to an out of the way crossing. I was the only person waiting to cross. I went with the flow, got all my stuff 1, 2, 3 and was on my way. Sweet. ... I'm in Mexico!
I made Ciudad Victoria in no time. Pancho Villa tours stops here for the first night after crossing into Mexico at Mc Allen. Nice City but it was early and I wanted to check out the Eco- forest reserve plus I thought I would try to camp the first night, thinking it will add to the adventure.
Photo--My First night in Mexico down a dirt path in the heart of the Tropic of Cancer, Eco-Forest Reserve. The trail was hardly noticeable from the road but I've been practicing looking for camping spots like this ever since I can remember. The trail ended at this old corral. It looked like a good spot to camp and was. That evening and the next morning was filled with loud weird sounds. Waking up here was so cool, Espresso coffee, the perfect camp spot, screeching exotic birds, the feeling I was in a foreign land. I had a tightness in my throat thinking about where I was and what I'm about to do, Yeah!
Obviously I didn't know how available water was going to be in Mexico.
Getting Lost in Mexico:
I started a zigzag pattern the second day having fun with the maps. The further inland I went the cooler the landscape. Map reading and navigation is everything. Towns mostly have new names and roads are marked as to what town is down it. Way way cool! This IS the adventure I 'm looking for but at the same time I'm thinking, what the hell am I doing? While checking out the mountains I didn't want to get to close to Mexico City. I've read stories from south of the border biker about the heavy traffic in the City and I donā€™t want any of it.
This road should have taken me to the other side of this ridge that was plainly visible while driving along. Then it should have led to a road toward the coast. Beautiful ride, I ended up in some small village way up. It seemed like the village was having a celebration in there beautiful town square. I found out later it was just a normal Monday. Iā€™m really liking life.
I was totally lost in the Mountains for over a day. The road (or trail) was this steep and steeper. It seemed like for hours I was standing on my pegs and spitting rocks out with my rear tire as I was goosing it to keep my balance. All three maps I had showed a connection between two highways. One map even showed a red line thinking a state highway. There was none and 50% of the towns listed are either not there or the names have changed. I did find some beautiful Mexican villages on my way to nowhere and had a great time. In the mountains along the road there didn't seem like there was much unused flat land open for camping. The little villages I came through had zero tourism and the motels were not obvious and looked WAY primitive even to me. That night I camped on a Mexican familyā€™s driveway, with their permission. They were unreal friendly people. The Man of the house kept telling me he has never met an American before and he wants his sons and daughter to meet me, or I think that's what he was saying.
The kids hung out with me all morning. After I used up all the Espanol I knew they just had a ball watching me pack up my gear. Super pleasant and well mannered kids.
I ended up further north of the main road I turned off of before getting lost. Then doubled back further north to highway 70 east then south on 180 to Tuxpan. I have good roads now and coastal scenery. I'm in a dream.
Tropical Port City:
My guidebook said Tuxpan is a small lively tropical port City, I had a good idea what that meant. I checked into a motel room right across the street from the water and a half-mile or less from town square. $26 a night. That night the guard had me pull my bike into the Motel lobby, standard procedure.
Near the town square there were lots of bars and small shops. The bars seemed like the kind where a ships crew would hang out and get some fool drunk, and then the drunk would wake up and find himself the next day in a ship headed out to sea to be part of the crew. Lots of live music and lively atmosphere everywhere and No tourists. This is Mexico, the one I came to see. The bars always had a few Chicas lined up ready to serve the customers or sit with the customers and drink or dance or whatever@*~, ā€¦ Iā€™m in my element and liken it.
This is the view from my room. A billion birds race along the shore from tree to tree just outside my room.
Touring the Emerald Coast:
Cruising south of Tuxpan is fantastic, good roads with seascape. Itā€™s called Mexico's Emerald Coast.
I drive my cruising buddies crazy. I like to stop often and smell the roses or in this case check out all the pre-Spanish archeological sites. Maybe that's why I cruise alone alot?
These guys tried to flag me down on my way down the trail but I wanted to get to the site. On the way back out I stopped. They wanted to give me a coconut out of the tree and talk. The people are so friendly here in Mexico. I often draw a small crowd wherever I pull over.
The emerald coast is full of great chillin spots
I tried to stay off the toll roads thinking I would miss the Mexico I came down here to see. The free roads go through all the small towns and you can't really be in a hurry. On the secondary roads you have endless opportunities for snacking. I stop at fresh fruit stands like this all day long. Fresh fruit, fresh juice or whatever. I'm always trying to stay in tune with my hydration and nutrition level, thinking it's important for staying alert and safe on the road.
Lunch stop - Gulf coast
Hwy. 180 to Veracruz is a super ride. Veracruz is a super City. The Veracruz malecon (central sea side road) is not to be missed. Sit at a table on the street drinking cappuccino at a cafe' across from Navy ships and big fishing boats. Tons of people watching and no American tourists.
This is the view from my $61 / night room, Macombo Hotel. I had to spend two nights here!
Out of Veracruz I saw a Volcano on the map and had to check it out. It was kind of foggy and drizzly, never did see the thing. This is sugar cane country and trucks over loaded with cane dropping cane all over the road where ever there's a bump.
Wow! So far the whole trip has been rosy, nothing but friendly people, great food and good weather. I thought I would try to make a little time and take a toll road, 180D to the state of Tabasco where I could maybe camp near the sea. I was flying along making good time on great roads. I needed a break and some gas around the big oil town of Coatzacoalcos. I pulled off the toll road at the first exit, a big gas station complex with a lot of strip mall type of shops and a lot of activity. After gas I walked my bike over and parked between some cars near a convenient store. I had my rain suite on and was bending down undoing my saddle bag to stow the rain suite when a big Mexican , he went at least 250, came over talking to me, I rapped with him a little, did my normal formal greeting and went to shake his hand, normal right?, but not. It was like grabbing at a thick muscled stud that wasnā€™t making any attempt to shake, even if it could. Woow! Then he said something I couldn't understand. I went into my normal song "perdĆ³neme, hablo espaĆ±ol muy mal" sorry I speak Spanish very bad, this always gets a smile but not here. It was feeling tense. Then the guy said ā€œdrinke drinkeā€ with a thumb in the mouth motion. Me, being vary friendly I said "no no" and smiled. Then before I knew it he had his hands all OVER ME fingering my chest and sides up and down. I blew him back with a shove. We both stood our ground for a moment while I maintained a stone face stare. He started rattling out some Spanish jive and was giving me crap about my inadequate locks on my saddle bags. At that moment I knew my suspicions where right, he wasnā€™t a friendly Mexican that was a little slow but a big aggressive dude wanting to shake me down! This is the moment Iā€™ve trained and studied for. I was ready for anything. Iā€™m way to aggressive for my own good and I know that so I like to think Iā€™m smart enough to know the best physical encounter is the one that never happens. My stone face was deepening and I stooped speaking Spanish, at that point it would have put me at a disadvantage. I was now speaking universally. Next he reached inside my helmet, which was clipped on the sissy bar, and reached out my sunglasses. I coiled slightly in a relaxed attack stance and was ready to "pull the trigger". He rambled out some more jive, I continued my death stare. After a moment the sunglasses slowly were put back into the helmet. The Spanish jive talk and the stare continued for what seemed like forever , but it was only seconds, then he slowly started walking away, but first scanning me and my gear slowly up and down with his eyes. Aggressively slow and always keeping an eye on me walked away. The whole time this was going on an even bigger Mexican dude stood leaning against a car talking on a cell phone watching, he was one car over. I looked at him a couple times with a ā€œHey whatā€™s up with thisā€ look. He gave me no comfort at all. He was probably in on the whole thing and talking to his buddy up on the toll road saying ā€œHey! hear comes a gringo tourist to your spot, get ready!ā€.
WTF, I motored out of the complex about a half a block in front of some shacks along the road so I could stow my suit in the bags. The mind is kind of racing now. Did I let it get to far? Was I over reacting? ā€œNo, nobody touches me, especially like thatā€. I look for justification, Why did this happen? I blame it on me not looking particularly tough with my rain suite on and he didnā€™t see my flaming skull decals until he looked me over. ā€œOK Iā€™m over itā€ but itā€™s still in my mind. Before I know it another big Mexican, I swear it was the first ones brother, came up to me and started aggressively talking to me. I was VARY FIRM but pleasant and just crammed my suite under my bungee cords and got the hell out of there.
I think I was a little paranoid at that point!
Several days later Iā€™m in Belize liken life. I drove onto the Belize City public beach and started chillin out under a palm umbrella. A couple of hippie type vanā€™s were parked about fifty yards away on the beach with some Belizianā€™s hanging out. A while later I started chatting with one of then. We talked for a while and then he asked me if I had trouble with any Mexicans during my trip. Not thinking the above story was anything I said ā€œNot reallyā€. He said ā€œYa, some Mexicans like to play the pianoā€. I said. ā€œWhat?ā€. He said, ā€œThey like to play the piano!ā€. I stood there with a stupid look on my face for a moment then, light bulb! ā€œYeah! A Mexican did play the piano on me a few days ago!ā€ My Belizian friend started practically rolling on the ground with laughter knowing exactly what I just said.
- People with way more experience then I dealing with hustlers suggested I could of handled it so the situation wouldnā€™t have escalated as far as it did. I know they're right. I was caught by surprise and I let it happen. I will use a suggestion early on the next time, ā€œLlamo a la policiaā€ Iā€™m calling the police.
- Be aware and study any person or persons who come up to you. Mexicans are generally a little reserved and polite. If someone is loud and in your face itā€™s a RED flag. Your being tested for your weaknesses.
- When parking always have the bike pointing out with everything attached so if shit hits the fan all you have to do is step on, stick in the keys and take off. My bike was pointing in, between two cars, I would have had to back it out first.
- Keep the pepper-spray handy, right front hip pocket ready to draw with ease. If you canā€™t get to it, it wonā€™t do you any good. In this case it was under my rain suit and I would have had to dink around a little to get it.
- Be aware of the first gas stations off a toll road after a long run or any big City center station.
OK, In Mexico you see Motels like this on the outskirts of every major City.
On my sixth day in Mexico in the state of Tabasco I was running low on sunlight. I for sure wasnā€™t going to make it to my planned destination where I thought I could camp for the night. Just before entering the City of Villahermosa I see a Motel like this one, Motel del Sol (The Sun motel). I pulled in and at the gate was a booth where a woman was taking money. It was just like entering a drive-in movie. Inside the compound looked like rows and rows of self-storage stalls. In my best (rusty) Spanish I asked how much for the night (?Cuanto por noche?). The woman in the booth rambled and all I picked up was ā€œpor la hora, por la horaā€(for the hour). I wasnā€™t getting it and kept asking ā€œ?Cuanto por total noche?ā€. Finally she said ā€œTrescientos cincuenta pesoā€ about $35 bucks. This is expensive for Mexico but I was ready to call it quits for the day. The woman seemed surprised I was interested. I asked if I could see the room. It was small but very clean with a huge bed, huge TV and best of all each room had its own private garage stall, great for bike security. I took it.
The sign in front said restaurant and bar, after parking I strolled out onto the compound looking for the bar hoping for a little socializing. Didnā€™t see anything, I walked into the office and asked. The woman in the office seemed pissed and I think said ā€œroom service onlyā€. Bummer, but what the heck so I went back to my room and ordered by phone, Pollo enchiladas con mole e dos cervesas, about 5 bucks.
Waiting for the food I flicked on the TV, it was cable but only had about six channels and two channels were hard core porn. Wooo, Scanning the room I noticed three foil packets of you know what next to the bed plus lotions and who knows what. The bathroom had a normal toilet plus a toilet with what looked like a fountain in the middle. I must have been a little slow that day but it did finally hit me, I was in a se-x Motel. I've heard about places like this when I lived in the Dominican Republic but never saw one. The garage stalls are so you can hide your vehicle so nobody knows you're there. Funny!
Waiting for my food the phone rings, a female voice was I think asking me something. This is one time I had NO idea what was being said, I could only imagine &@#. I just said in my best Spanish, ā€œNo, sĆ³lo quiero comida gracias" (No, I only want the food thank you).
The room had a dumb waiter so you never saw the server. The food and beers came I took the stuff off the dumb waiter and placed the Pesos plus tip in its place. I spun it around and closed the little door then heard a faint ā€œGraciasā€.
The food was fabulous and the beer hit the spot.
cavebiker screwed with this post 12-01-2007 at 06:40 AM Reason: Spelling & style
|08-31-2004, 10:28 AM||#2|
Old School Adventurer
Joined: Jan 2004
Location: Hayward, WI
Back On the Road:
From Villahermosa I headed north on the free Hwy. 180. This road skimmed close to the Gulf and is in good shape, great scenery and a lot of fresh fruit and juice opportunities.
State of Campeche, Mexico.
Great cruising on this thin strip of land - Gulf coast in the state of Campeche, Mexico.
At Champoton I headed south on 261 to 186 east. From the gulf of Mexico to the Caribbean, 186 is a newly paved road but it had a lot of dips to the point where I had to slow it down to under 60 MPH so as not to bottom out, weird.
I was somewhere between the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean camping out in the jungle. Things were looking eerie. The Jungle is dark and dense right up to the edge of the road. Wherever you see a spot to pull over itā€™s loaded up with garbage and crap probably left over from workers waiting to get picked up after work or who knows.
The ground was wet and spongy like thick weavings of moist plants. I was glad to get the tent up and cool down. This is the jungle.
I rode my bike to the Caribbean Sea, I like the way that sounds. I still have over a week before my wife flyā€™s into the Belize City airport. The only thing I need to do is find and reserve a place for when Heidi is here and be at the airport when she arrives.
My first night in Belize somewhere between the northern border and Belize City. The trail turned to standing water. I back it up and park it for the night. I had a nice little campfire made from about 5 pounds of guide books and maps I didn't need cuz Iā€™m not going to that part of Mexico and whatever else would burn to lower my weight and space load. Fun fun.
The guide book said there is a scenic route to Belize City, but in the rainy season you should talk with the locals to see if it's passable. ....Well.....This was the dry season. So... I just went for it. Yeeha! It was scenic.
Tooling into Belize City was fun, lots of activity. I did notice at every busy street corner was a police officer or two or three. After zigzagging around town I did come to an empty street corner with just one guy hanging out. He looked like Sammy Davis Jr. but was wearing a neon yellow suit with matching pants and hat. I felt like I was on the set of a NYPD Blues take. This guy was pleasant to talk with he said he was kind of famous showing me his scrap book of signatures, photos and notes. Iā€™m in there, Tom Junkans.
I hung out at the Belize City beach under a palm branch umbrella and was talking with locals for a while. Later I headed south to where I thought I could reserve a place for when Heidi arrives. Placencia is a small village at the tip of a 20 mile long peninsula on the Caribbean. I ended up staying at an $11 / night guest house with private bath, shower and a view of the sea, Sweet! I reserve a cottage for 10 nightā€™s right on the beach at the tip of the peninsula. Placenca is so cool. I became a small celebrity, the guy who drove his Harley from the US. Everyone knows who I am. My landlord keeps my bike right behind his house under his bedroom window and his dog sleeps underneath. I gave him a bunch of stiff wire I used to repair my backpack attachment and other miscellaneous hardware I wanted to part with. He said he is going to make a fishing trap. We are friends for life.
I still have a week before Heidi arrives. My guide book says the best rain forest in Belize is to the far south near Guatemala.
The main highway and only highway in Southern Belize. The gaps between the boards on the bridges were super wide at times and made for a weird sensation when your tire slipped in the crack.
Another shot of the main highway (only highway) in southern Belize. No warning signs for this washout, you need to keep on your toes.
Chilling out in the Jungle. I love creeks like this anywhere I go but Iā€™m lovin these even more. I attempt to scrape some of the crap thatā€™s caked up on the bike off and have some lunch.
Mayan Indian village in Southern Belize:
Approaching the Maya mountains - Southern Belize
Far southern Belize high up in the Maya Mountain rain forest is where the Mayan Indians fled in the 1500's to escape enslavement. The Mayan's still live a primitive life style today. The villages are set near good swimming for bathing. I've seen drinking water wells near central buildings or schools, I'm told this is good water to drink even for me. Driving through the villages you see lots of chickens, pigs and mules in front yards.
Another Mayan Indian village in far Southern Belize.
Main road into Agucate village.
South, past here was one more village before the Guatemala border. I forget the name but it was larger then Agucate, which is around 40 homes. To get there is a one hour hike through the rain forest, the only way in.
School is out. They all ran at me when I stopped to get my camera out then jumped back when I dismounted.
Road goes from two tracks to one. I park it and two Mayan dudes plus dog guide me an hour into the rain forest to some caves and a waterfall. Agucate, Southern Belize near the Guatemala border. The guide book said this is the best rain forest in Belize.
Here are two of my guides into the Jungle. They are super friendly, courteous and informative. The guide in the photo spoke good English and had recently graduated a Belize sponsored Eco- tourism training program. Ya! I just bumped into them. I guess all the villages have people who have gone through this training, plus a lot of villages have guest bunk houses for eco-travelers. Everyone who visited my camp outside of town asked why I'm not staying in town at the community place.
It was about a half hour walk through the jungle before we reached the caves with pre-Columbus markings. About another half hour before the water falls. Way cool, I feel this is a dream.
My camp site about a mile out of Agucate village. Great swimming.
Kept looking for Tarzan
Visiting Mayan's at my campsite near Agucate village:
Out hunting they captured this Iguana, the legs are bound for transport. The handler was showing me the belly and said this is prized food because it's full of eggs.
Another group of Mayan Indians visiting me at my camp site near the village. They were asking me "Were you in the Army? Aren't you afraid to sleep out in the jungle alone?" I said "Na! I'm from the north woods, I'm not afraid" Then one of them said "What's that" and pointed to the thick brush next my tent. They were kind of trying to tease me about the jungle and I thought this was another attempt. Then I saw the biggest snake I've ever seen, at least six feet long and thicker then my arm scurry from the brush to the front of my tent. I swear if my tent wasn't zippered shut it would have slithered inside. One of the guys said "I would stay inside your tent after dark if I was you" I forget what I said but I do remember what ever I said my voice was shaking and my knees felt loose. Believe me I took their advice. I slept with my cycle boots on all night and sacrificed a water jug so I wouldn't have to step outside to pee. Before the group took off one of them with a machete made a stick for me, it had a name but I forgot what it was called. The stick was for checking the brush for snakes. He showed me how to use it. "You check for snakes like this, you kill them like this and this is how you whip the snake out of your way." Yaaa!....I thanked them and practiced using the stick. Wakeup call,...Hello, I'm not in Wisconsin any more!
I guess word got out that I had a camera. The Man of this house biked up to see me and asked if I would take a photo of his house and family and send him the photos. They invite me inside so I could write out the names of everyone in the family on a tablet so they will have a record of how to spell their names. Wow. The hut was noticeably cooler inside than out, it had a tall roof with dirt floor. There was one large bed near the middle side with no mattress. The cooking stuff in the far corner and a few chairs near the bed. He was very proud of his house and his yard with garden. While I'm having everyone repeat their names so I could guess how to spell them his wife is breast feeding a baby in a chair across from me. OK now I'm waiting for National Geographic to call, I canā€™t believe what Iā€™m witnessing. People are so friendly and real!
I still had five days before my wife flew into Belize City. I've heard so much about the Jaguar sanctuary in the mountains I had to check it. I had plans to cruise to western Belize the next day but after backpacking the sanctuary for a day that was it. Man! If your into the Gilligan's Island scene complete with Howler monkeys, 100 foot canopy rain forest, real swinging vines, water falls with idyllic swimming holes, THIS IS IT! About 10 miles off the main road is a base camp area complete with Tiki roof shelters, just enough room to pitch a tent and park the bike, high and dry. The base camp area is filled with tropical fruit trees and tons of birds. The sounds are unreal, that is if you're into that kind of thing.
The end of one of the trails in the Jaguar sanctuary on top of a mountain peak. The trails include semi-technical climbing and a lot of good swimming spots.
A great swimming hole only 1/2 hour hike from the base camp area.
OK, I'm hanging out at this swimming hole eating lunch and reading a book. I haven't seen anyone up on the trails for over two days. All of a sudden I start hearing female voices coming closer and closer. Before I know it I'm surrounded, all native girls. My mind racing a mile a minute, already visualizing shirts and paints flying while the girls all jump in........BUT NOOOO. I guess they were more conservative then I had hoped.. They just posed for me and hung out. It was all good anyway. I said " The boys back in WiscOnsin ain't gonna believe this!" then I took the photo.
They were on a school outing. Belize, with help from the British have done a great job with education, having one of the highest literacy rates of the third world.
Placencia, Belize. My wife and I stayed here for a week and a half at $50 / day. Everything here is within walking distance and bear feet is standard. Placencia is in the Genius world record book for having the narrowest main street. Thereā€™s a Seafood place on the beach two blocks away, the best I have ever had. The Lobster was a little pricey, around $12 but it was huge and unreal.
Placencia is at the tip of a 20-mile long narrow strip of sand on the Caribbean Sea. Ya Mon.
My wife had a great time, a 150 mile cycle cruise through the Jungle to a fantasy Caribbean beach community. She now hops on a jungle plane and is on her way back home and I have a tone of time to cruise back to the US and enjoy Mexico again.
Heading North Again:
I get out of Belize with not a problem. Iā€™m cruising west through the dense jungle again. Iā€™m looking for these archeological hostels that I missed on the way in. Nothing looks open. Itā€™s getting late and then I pass a neat looking place with a Canadian flag flying at the gate. I cruise in and a nice looking tall well built blond woman came to greet me. She said they are trying to get their place ready for guests but arenā€™t ready yet but that Iā€™m welcome. I set up my tent and she prepares a super spaghetti dinner complete with Bloody Maryā€™s and storytelling all night. Look for the Canadian flag flying. This is a great place to stay and the owners are informative and hospitable plus itā€™s only miles from a great Mayan archeological site, I think the name of the site is Chicanna.
Iā€™m not going to do the Gulf coast as much on the way back instead I head north through the jungle. I almost always procrastinate when it comes to putting on my rain suit. It was sprinkling for a while now and Iā€™m thinking I should suit up but no. Then Iā€™m driving along and I see what looks like a wall 2 feet high of water, its coming down so hard it splashes up two feet high. Iā€™m wet so no need to get the rain suit wet. Iā€™m driving, its pouring and its blowing so hard Iā€™m afraid to get blown over. There's no place to pull off and you donā€™t want to pull over and get mowed down by an 18 wheeler who probably has bad wipers. I keep going then I start coming up on one of those awesome tall Mexican bridges that look scary even when itā€™s dry, sunny and calm. But now itā€™s blowing like crazy with pouring rain. I get one of those super scary feelings like Iā€™m going to get to the top of this 50 foot tall bridge and get blown sideways off into the drink, eeks! I finely get to this big gas station and went to gas up. No gas. I was shaking cold and soaked head to toe. I pull off under a lean-to service stall and begin to strip down. Everyone wants to come over and rap, everyone is working but no gas to pump and the boss is out. Fun fun, I put dry stuff on and my rain suit and get warm. We're all having fun and I was testing my limits in Spanish. The boss comes back so I take off for my nice dry clean Motel Del Sol, about 200 miles to go.
The rain continues and I drive past the aftermath of some horrendous accidents. At one I saw one dead person hanging half out of a car and another incident I donā€™t see how anyone could have survived. Trucks and cars upside down in a steep ditch with everyone standing around.
Feels good knowing where Iā€™m spending the night:
The backups at the accidents cost me a lot of time. I pull into Motel Del Sol after dark and dripping wet. I know the drill, not per hour but for the whole night. Ahh! Itā€™s Friday night and no way can I have a room for the whole night, itā€™s too busy. I beg the attendant so she calls the Madam. I do some smooth talking so they let me stay in a back room where the remote didnā€™t work very well and I had to share a parking stall with another room, but who cares! Iā€™m warm and dry and the food and beer is on its way. Man life can be so great some times.
I overnight in Veracruz again and lived large.
Fisherman near Veracruz, Mexico
Tuxpan again and some more large livin and some super food.
Last eve in Mexico waiting for the sunset.
I almost ran a Dog over my last day. I was going to fast and he was making a beeline direct for interception. I locked up and started fishing, he heard the sound and at the last second turned back. Woush! Letā€™s just get back home in one piece Tom.
My first stop at home base from the Belize cruise. This is one of the best biker bars anywhere with parking for a few hundred bikes. During biking season (this is February and this is Minnesota) the place has two outside bars, a grill and a great view of the Minneapolis downtown skyline with all the bikes in the foreground.
After parking and taking this shot I walked into the bar. Some biker Dudes at the end of the bar were I think snickering. I'm sure.... cuz I was making such a big deal of taking the perfect photo outside of my Sporty. Iā€™m lovin the whole scene as I bellied up to the bar, I put my fist on the bar and say " I'll have a shot of your best Tequila and a glass of your best beer please". The bartender, "what up?" I gave a brief description of where I just came from and what I did. The bartender "you mean this is your first stop returning from your trip!" "Yes it is!" "Well you don't need to go any further, this is on the house!".
Feels good to be home.
cavebiker screwed with this post 12-01-2007 at 06:42 AM Reason: style, additions
|08-31-2004, 03:14 PM||#3|
Joined: Oct 2003
Location: South Dakota
Nice report and pictures.
It's Not The Destination.......
It's The Journey........
|08-31-2004, 06:40 PM||#5|
Joined: Jul 2004
Location: California...East Bay... :D
Looked like a great time...
One of my best friends has a sporster and I can't wait show him your story after he gets back in town. Amazing is all I can say.
Blackpaw - Flat-coated retrievers
|09-02-2004, 12:46 AM||#9|
The Voice of Reason
Joined: Feb 2002
Location: Memphis, Tennessee
Now that was a true adventure report!
Always mindful of obstruction, do your duty, never fail;
Keep your hand upon the throttle, and your eye upon the rail.
|09-02-2004, 03:40 PM||#10|
Old School Adventurer
Joined: Jan 2004
Location: Hayward, WI
Thanks a lot yawl. It was fun to put together and Iām glad to here that some of ya enjoyed it. It also gets me fired up to do another south of the border cruise.
Hey TOMC, you look like a newbie, 1 post. Did you register just so you could post to my thread? I feel honored, thanks. (Donāt tell me if Iām wrong, I like the world I invent for myself). Anyways, welcome to the asylum!
|09-04-2004, 07:25 PM||#12|
Old School Adventurer
Joined: Jan 2004
Location: Hayward, WI
I thought this shot looked familiar.
|01-27-2008, 06:45 AM||#13|
Joined: Jul 2005
Location: Asheville, NC
This report was just as good this time as the first time I read. Thanks for pointing me back to it Tom.
As I said on your other thread, you should write a book. Tremendous difference in pics from this thread to "No Return Ticket".
|01-30-2008, 04:48 AM||#15|
Old School Adventurer
Joined: Jan 2004
Location: Hayward, WI
Its so cool seeing this thread pop up again after 6 years. This was a fantastic ride and was my re-birth to motorcycle adventure travel. Cavegirl and I plan to ride through Belize when we return on our present ride.
The cavebike after I first bought it back in Sept. of 01. My life was forever altered after this. 4 months later Im riding down to Belize. The dream turned into reality
Have a dream, live it. Set a goal, achieve it.
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