Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Belize - Part 2

Day 7-9: Belize River Canoeing and Camping Adventure – March 27-29, 2014

Thursday was the start of our 3-day canoe adventure.  Our day began eventfully with our van breaking down before we left the parking lot. We passed the time by having a beer while we waited for a new vehicle to arrive. 

Once we reached the river we loaded up our supplies, packed the boats and had a river-side lunch before heading out down the river.  The excitement started right away as we had a huge snake come through our group as we were having lunch. 

 The river was low during our paddle so we had to do more paddling and less drifting, which turned out to be a fair amount of work with 3 people plus gear in 16ft canoes. We had a few short rapids to negotiate and we beached ourselves on a sand bar or two along the way to add some excitement to the paddling.  

We also saw all kinds of Howler Monkeys and tropical birds while paddling. One of our group members was (un)lucky enough to get peed on by an angry Howler Monkey.  

We stopped along the river for the occasional swimming break to keep everyone cooled down and happy.

 We arrived at our camp for the night at 5pm, unloaded the boats, set up the tents and enjoyed the evening getting to know each other over a bucket of Jungle Juice (i.e. rum punch) and BBQ Chicken while watching the Fire Flies cruise around our campsite.

The morning seemed to come all too soon after a sleepless night of deflated air mattresses, crazy humidity and Howler Monkeys calling through-out the night.  Part of the group opted to  go for a jungle hike, we chose to have a relaxing morning in camp where we enjoyed some coffee and reading books by the river. 

After a lunch of chicken stew we broke down camp and loaded the boats for an afternoon of paddling. We paddled for about 2 hours until we reached a great little swimming hole where we took a break for snacks and swimming and then hiked up to the highway to go to a store to pick up some river side beers. 

We paddled for another hour or so to reach our next campsite where we enjoyed a campfire, veggie soup and a fun night of hanging out, night fishing and round two of Jungle Juice. We even got to check out a click beetle with glowing lights. The huge flying beetle has two green dots on it that glow like LEDs as it flies around the jungle. It was very cool!

On our last day of canoeing we  had a 6am wake up call and after a tasty breakfast of fry-jacks and eggs we packed the boats and headed down the river. We enjoyed some more bird and Monkey spotting en route and had an enjoyable swim and snack break half way through. 



After about 2.5 hours of paddling we reached the end of our journey where we pulled the boats out of the water and caught a ride back to the Midas Resort in San Ignacio with our favorite drive, Fast Eddy! we finished off our day relaxing by the pool followed by dinner and live music in town and drinks in the court yard with Mike's newest friend, "Scabby Cat". 

Day 10-11: Hopkins – March 30-31, 2014

Today we hit the road after breakfast to head back to the coast of Belize. We drove for about 2.5 hours to Mayflower Bocawina National Park to spend the afternoon exploring another part of the jungle. A few people from our group went zip-lining and the rest of us headed out for a hike to Bocawina Falls.

The hike took about 45 min with stops along the way to check out plants and animals and with a slight detour where we lost the trail and waded up the creek until we reconnected with the proper trail.

Once we reached the falls we went swimming in the pools below and relaxed in the shade near the water. After the hike we had lunch in the park and then drove for another half hour or so to reach our hotel in Hopkins, "Jungle Jeanie by the Sea".

The hotel was wonderful, we all got to stay in little cabanas right on the Caribbean Sea. That afternoon was spent relaxing and swimming in the ocean and in general, just taking it easy.

The next day was a designated beach day.  We spent the day at the hotel sleeping in, swimming and relaxing in the sun, followed by a group dinner at the hotel restaurant, hosted by Jeanie.

Click Here for Trip Report Part 1

Click Here for Trip Report Part 3

Click Here for full Photo Album

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