Click on the picture, below the waving flags on the left and right, to see relevant photo's of the individual countries and trips throughout the years!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Video's of the Mexico trip!


                During our trip, I tried to shoot some video with just an iPhone holding in my hand, while driving, what caused the quality not to be first class, but at least gives some impressions. as well it was almost impossible to upload the video's, the same day it was shot, mostly due to slow internet connections, so I decided to put them all together in my last blog-post of our trip. Probably in the future I will obtain an helmet cam, so the quality improves and can keep both hands on the handlebar.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Last day and hit the 10000 km mark

Thursday 1/26/2012

Day 12 Distance ( 385 km)

More as 150 years young together

    Well, it was our last day and to get home we had to make by 3pm in La Ceiba and had 380 km to go, so another long day on the bike. Left 6:30 am, without coffee, but knew a breakfast place an hour away on the way from La Entrada to San Pedro Sula and stopped there to get our daily fix.  After leaving an hour later we were in San Pedro, made our way across town and were heading for La Ceiba, during this part we hit the 10000 km mile stone between our 3 trips  sofar in Central Anerica without any mechanical problems or even a flat tire.
                Stopped by uncle Tio to get the other daily fix and reached Ceiba around 1 pm. I had to see if my old Toyota was still working after been laid up for a few weeks by Hotel Iberia, because next week I am off again for another trip and wanted to be sure the car could make San Pedro airport. This time to Los Paisos Bajos, to see my family and carrying one of my grandchildren (Abner), to see his great grand mother for 2 weeks.
     After we dropped the bikes off on the Utila Express on the dock in La Ceiba, we went with the Utila Princess ferry home to Utila. The bikes would come the next day or what ever is left of it!...

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Back in the Homeland again!

Wednesday 1/25/2012

Day 11 Distance ( 364 km)

Early start again, because we had to do a lot of things.
1) See the wells, waterfalls of  Semuc Champey.
2) See the caves from Lanquin.
3) See that we get back into Copan Honduras, before dark.

To get to the water falls, we had to take another bad road for about 10 km down to the river, fog was still present and we went through a rain forest and as usual we were the only tourists on the road. We had to pass an iron bridge to get to the national park and arrived there before opening and $ 10,00 did the trick to get us in.

       It was pretty impressive how the roaring water disappeared under ground and showed up, later down the stream again. Spend an hour there and then backtracked to Lanquin to visit the caves. Once arrived, we entered in a dark cave system, but Scotty had 3 flaslights, so we did not had to buy the overpriced candles to get in. It was a little disappointed, due to the fact, they didn't want to put the lights on for only 3 tourists!
       Spend some time there and decided to pick our bags up in the hotel and then take off for Honduras what was at least 6 hours away.

So we had to get again on a dirt road to get back to Coban and from there it was a very nice highway through a national forest to the intersection Guatemala City, Puerto Barrios, called los Ranchos.

We lost Scotty during this part of the trip and decided to continue for the border and hopefully meet up there again, I needed some gas a little later and rested my sore bones for a while and asked a cop outside, if he see a similar bike with a Gringo on it , to stop him and tell Scotty then, we are inside in the A/C bar area, waiting on him.
       Police stopped him and a little later, we continued to the border, where we arrived around 5 pm, took us 5 minutes to cross and an half an hour later we pulled in the yard of Hotel Patty in Copan. The owners are a nice older couple, I know for 33 years, so we had to catch up some stories.

Later that evening, Scotty and I had a great T-Bone steak in the restaurant next to the hotel. It is the only place I eat in Copan and it is always good, but never can remember the name of it.....

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Dirt roads to Lanquin

Tuesday 1/24/2012

Day 10 Distance (246 km)

Scotty on the dirt road
      We decided Huehuetenango sucks, polluted, trashy and smelly, but it was the cheapest hotel this trip $2.00 p/p, you can't beat that and you didn't need A/C or fan (There was not one any anyway) 
So after a good breakfast just before 7am, we left  the town towards Lanquin. The road in the beginning was good and soon we were again up high in the mountains and all we did was making  curves and pulling brakes, but eventually we hit the washboard road with potholes and the road was so bad, we only were making 15 kph. The biggest landslide, I ever saw in my live, was on this road and I guess one third of the mountain must have collapsed from 3000 meter high and block the only road, but some farmers created their own road on their property and were charging toll, but only $1.00 per vehicle. Made some interested video, but the internet here in Lanquin is terrible, Anyway after suffering for a couple of hours on this dirt road, we reached Coban, ate at  McDonald and continued to Lanquin were we reached around 4 pm. Took a well deserved shower to get the dust out of everything and  hit the town for some beers. 

Monday, January 23, 2012

Old Pan-america highway into Guatemala 2500 meters

Monday 1/23/2012

Day 9 Distance (268 km)

San Cristobal 
Last night, we walked in Cristobal, to check out the street scenery and looking for a good steak house. The place was crowded after dark and soon we found a good Argentina restaurant, which was showing the size and different cuts, outside in front of the entrance on display. Decide to go back into Guatemala tomorrow and were looking forward to the high mountain roads we had to cross.

San Cristobal 
San Cristobal 
San Cristobal de la Cases
                                  They didn't see me and they got lost!!

Left 10 am after we did some sight seeing and soon we were on the  road to La Mesilla, the border town in Guatemala, it was amazing scenery and beautiful mountain roads, we passed and 2 hours later, we hit the border, checked out of Mexico and they told us by Aduana, they would return the deposit of $ 400.00 for the bike on our credit card! Towards Huehue, we hit 2500meters. There was a landslide on the PanAm and traffic was already lining up for miles, but with the moto's we were in no-while first in line. After an half an hour we were allowed to pass and continued our way.

Traffic jam mud slide
Border La Mesilla
Mud slide Panam

 Around 4 pm, we reached the town @ 2000 meters, settled down and checked out the town

Sunday, January 22, 2012

The mountains of Chiapes

Sunday 1/22/2012

Day 8 Distance (238 km)


     Today another early start, to beat the crowds and heat @ the ruins  of Palenque. It all seems to me the same, after I visited the last week various ruins and after the mandatory 2 hour sight seeing tour, we left and finally start climbing the mountains, after we first visited a water fall "Misal-Ha"
I had to take a swim in the cascade cold pool, what was refreshing.

      Sofar we had only flat roads this trip and it 
was time for a change and change there was and pretty soon we were a 2500 meter with all the views accordingly and it would be a test for my clutch, which was going out before we left, so actually had to go moderately up hill, to be sure I would make it home next week. After 4 hours of intensive steering, braking and watching out for toppes (bumps), we reached San Cristobal

I even made a video, while driving at 2000 meters high! Check it out, I did it driving without my hands on the 

Misol-Ha waterfalls
San Cristobal is a nice old colonial town, were the temperature dropps to freezing in the night, but today was predicted 7 C, which is a nice change of the warm humid air in the last 7 days. We reached around 4 pm strolled around the plaza and took it easy till dinner time in the hotel to catch up what happened with the world around us. The internet in the Hotel was sofar the best, we came across!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Road to Palenque, the last Maya ruins for me this year, they say.....

Saturday 1/21/2012

Day 7 Distance (436 km)

Highway Golf of Mexico
Today we were on the road before 7am, we wanted to go to Palenque, what was at least a 6 hour drive, filled up the bikes with gas, oil and chain oil and took of flying.

Rest stop on the Gulf

    2 hours later we hit the gulf coast of Mexico, just under the city of Campeche and had a very strong crosswind towards  the town of Champoton, what seems to be a nice fisherman city with a lot of activity.

       We had a breakfast stop at a nice beach side restaurant and decide shrimp omelet will do it for the location.
An hour later, we hit the rod again to try to get early in Palenque, were we arrived around 2 pm
Pure Vitamins
Sea going uphill 
This place was crowded with tourists and little shops and restaurants, I did my laundry here for $ 2.00, what was needed and walked around town till it was time for dinner and had to try to find Scotty, to see if he ran into trouble somewhere, so I can join him

Friday, January 20, 2012

Backward roads of Campeche

Friday 1/20/2012

Day 6 Distance (403 km)

  Last night dinner was good, it was mussels, calamares, fish and oysters and around nine we called it the night and prepared us for the next morning, so we could visit another Maya sight in Tulum, this one was on the beach and after a short visit, we packed up our bikes again and were heading for Merida, the capital of the Yucatan. Soon we reached Chitzen Itza, had some lunch, but didn't visit the site, we had enough of Maya ruins for today and instead of going Merida, we decided to use some back roads and go further south towards Palenque. This part of the Yucatan, I believe never saw a tourist yet and we were the curiosity in every village we passed. 

Chris & Scotty Tulum

Don't know
      Aroud 4 pm we entered the state of Campeche and soon after there we hit the town Hopelchen, checked in the only hotel and soon after that we found out the Mennonites were all over the place and the whole town was dry, No BEER, we couldn't believe this and decided tomorrow to have a very early start towards Palenque, so we could catch up with what we missed today!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Mennonites in the Shipyard and Mexico

Thursday 1/19/2012

Day 5 Distance ( 398 km)

Horse buggy
   Orange walk, a strange place with at least 100 chinese restaurants, so we picked one out, where we saw a few local Monnonites, about 30 in a family with lots of children and thought the food must be good and for sure it was Mushrooms with shrimps and lots of it.

Shipyard Transportation
      So we decided to visit their camp in the place called Shipyard, which is about 30 miles from orange walk and pretty soon we came across the buggies and horses, what is their only transportation mode, besides walking,
               They still talk their own slang   ( German) and do agriculture and wood work.
General store Shipyard

Low German
To make things more complicates, there are     Mennonites, Quakers and Amish in  Belize, but they do not really mix! It was as of time was set back 100 years in Shipyard and it was surreal and every one was travelling with buggies on the road and sometimes they go great distances! It is a must see thing and we all were happy we went out of the way to see them and at least we had some 100 km dirt road in the loop we made that morning.

Hotel parking

Horse buggy

There were no little restaurant or anything else to eat so when we returned to orange Walk to check out the hotel, we went first for break fast and you guessed it already "Chinese" there was no other food in this town, but that suited me.

After we left the hotel, we were heading for Mexico, using the Chetumal border and an hour later we reached, checked out of Belize for $ 20.00 exit tax and 5 minutes later, we were in mexico, where we had to do a lot of paperwork, but it is getting expensive now compared with Last year, no laws were implemented and to make the story yet, they charged each credit card almost $ 500.00 US, there was a refundable $ 400.00 deposit for the bike and they guaranteed, would be reversed when you leave Mexico, then there was a $ 23.00 immigration tax and at last , there was a $ 48.00 permit tax for driving in Mexico.
Mexico border Chetumal

     Anyway we left the border 1:30 pm and 3 hours later on an almost straight boring road, doing 130 km an hour, we checked in an apartment hotel in Tulum. Outside were thousands of people strolling down the highway, which had for a 2 mile stretch hundreds of restaurants, terraces and bars, so we felt right away at home.