Thursday, March 24, 2011

Fuego's Fireworks

The Five hour hike to the top of Acatenango, Guate's third largest voclano, is well worth the effort on nights like this!

This was the view from our campsite of neighboring Fuego Volcano. Not your everyday show, one we were happy as hell to catch.
Come by the office to sign up for our next summit adventure!
Old Town Outfitters
5a Ave. Sur #12c

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Las canas

Leaving our beautiful campsite along the rio grande de Zacapa behind we headed into the jocotan grande canyon. This is my favorite part of the whole trip.

18kms of nonstop sweet singletrack, river views, swimholes and amazing scenery.

This place really gives you the feeling of being out there and off the gringo path. It's a hard road but one so worth the trip.

The mountains in this part of the country are no huge but there beautiful all the same. Riding along the line in this canyon is a unique chance for a true back country experience. There is no way out once you head into the canyon other than pushing forward or turning back. We didn't set out to turn back!

Halfway through the canyon the jocotan and rio zacapa mix making a great swimhole. The high temps down in the canyon make the plunge a non decision.

The only town at text of the canyon oaths remote town of Santa Barbara. Lucky for us it isn't so remote that you can't find an icy cold chilly willy to gnaw on.

The end of the day brought us to this sweet campsite at the foot of the jocotan mountains. We set up shop and are celebrating our last night in camp with plenty of cold gallos.

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Estellando con la linea

Yesterdays long push had us getting to camp at almost dark. None of us had any idea as to how pretty our spot actually was along the banks of the Motagua River. Here ya go: sunrise from our camp. Pretty sweet.

"la linea" has transformed itself from railroad line to singletrack in many spots. It's hotter than he'll out there but damn it's pretty. The views from the trail across the river are of the cool cloud forests of the Sierra de las minas, another of our favorite places to go!

As amazing as the trail is, it's incredibly thorny. We logged some crazy amount of flats yesterday only to be equalled by that number today. Add the heat and sand and you got all the makings of a real "challenge".

Given the amount of flats along the way even with the skill of the old town staff 20+ flats is say 15 too many. We opted out of the "trail pump" for something well....more substantial. Welber "super bomba" Jimenez.

It wasn't all fun and games. The 40* temps kept most Englishman at bay. Here is a fine example of an hombre de Tierra fria laid out by the days heat.

However, just as the going got tough, the van found ice and my friend ice on the desert is crucial.

With the beer orders placed we pushed on to our campsite on the rio grande de zacapa. A watering hole next to the camp made it all worthwhile.
We'll see what maƱana unfolds!

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Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The wild wild east part tu

We pushed hard out of the gates and were rewarded by makingitto finca la Cruz. In this dusty desert of eastern Guatemala this IS the oasis of green you're looking for. Breaky in green grass and poolside was pretty sweet!

Alas all that greenery has to come to an end. But man, the views opened up as we rounded the bend over looking the El Rancho valley. This was great desert riding, rolling fun and fast.

Surprisingly as we rounded the end this monster bridge was wanting for us. It's all Rideable for those with what Guatemalans call "huevos" (balls) and is "bien de ahuevo"(cool) at that! I know all very confusing considering both expressions are based on the word "egg".

We rode and rode and rode some more pausing about, well every other 200 meters to repair a flat. We had a staggering 17 flats today, this must be a record somewhere. All was made good along the banks of the Motagua River when we finally made camp after 10:30 hours and 48 kms.

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Monday, March 7, 2011

Beast of the East GVI charity challenge

The first annual GVI phoenix GC to Copan Las Ruinas, Honduras trip pulled out of the station this morning early. We made it through the hardest part of the trip (Guatemala City) and on to the trail head.

The ride is littered with cool bridges, tunnels and great singletrack. The ride takes you through amazingly beautiful countryside that hardly anyone sees.

Certainly not many gringos come out here. It's a unique opportunity to see rural Guatemala. We pushed past our planned camp and made it to the lush green oasis of finca la Cruz.

Unfortunately the pool and jacquzi had been drained but the beets were cold at the fiends around the corner.

Juan and Co. cooked up a big spread of food, enough to feed an army of hungry cyclists.
Tomorrow we push on through el rancho and on to our next campsite at Cabanas.

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