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{ Monthly Archives } May 2010

uaxactun

Uaxactun is a mere 23 kilometres from Tikal on a beautifully surfaced gravel road and the only thing that momentarily impedes my progress is a thorn-induced puncture. When I arrive, on the basis of a last minute tip from an ex-pat German girl, living in El Remate, I seek out Antonio, who is one of […]

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tikal

On my way north, my first stop is Tikal. Tikal is one of the largest pre-Colombian Mayan sites and has the distinction of having the tallest pyramid in the Americas. Since I am riding straight past it I stop to check it out but, as I am keen to get started on my jungle adventure, […]

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lake peten itza

After another brief stretch of highway, I find myself at San Andres on the shores of Lake Izta Peten and I circle the lake on an unpaved road away from Flores and towards Tikal, yet another ancient Mayan ruin. I ride around the lake on the track rolling up and down hills through the hot […]

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the travelling gringa roadshow

I ride until dusk on the lookout for a likely camp spot without seeing anything that really looks like it would work. I am slightly nervous because I am in a new country and everybody keeps repeating black stories about what they feel might be in store for me in Guatemala. It is almost dark […]

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first impressions

I ride a long bumpy corrugated gravel road from the border to the town of Las Cruces where I try to quiz the locals about routes that will allow me to avoid the main highways. My map has some secondary roads marked but generally without sufficient information to make finding them unaided feasible. However, the […]

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leaving mexico

Since the extreme temperatures in the middle of the day make an early start imperative, I decide to try to get my papers sorted when I return from Yaxchamil so that I can get on my bike and leave first thing in the morning. I locate the immigration office opposite the museum and approach the […]

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yaxchilan

Despite the doubts raised by my visit to Bonampak, the following day at the river frontier between Mexico and Guatemala while I am trying to negotiate a boat to Bethel on the Guatemalan side of the river the following day I find myself attached to a group of twenty or so young Mexican university students […]

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a jungle hideaway

I am trying to reach the border between Mexico and Guatemala but, on the spur of the moment, I pedal on straight past the turnoff to Frontera Echeverria on the Usumacinta River to make a quick visit to Bonampak, a Mayan archeological site in the middle of the jungle. It occurs to me that perhaps […]

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hard life

Dusk. A grey sky over cleared burning fields. Howler monkeys hoot and growl from nearby stands of trees. A man walks along a foot path from the fields towards the road. I pass a rough building constructed of wide weathered grey wooden boards. The shack is set in a muddy yard in which chickens, turkeys, […]

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the jungle casts its spell

I wake in a damp tent after a night of heavy rain, pack my soggy things onto the bike and set of into the hazy dawn. As the sun rises the steamy air heats up. I soon turn off the main highway onto a diversion that will cut eighty kilometres from the journey and the […]

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