Feb 10 2009

Guatemala – Part 2 (January 2009)

Stefan and Silke’s narrative as for the second batch of photos from Guatemala:

“In Semuc Champey we decided to drive to Poptun because Erik has another contact there. But there was road work going on and we had to wait almost three hours to continue. Fortunately there was only one and a half hours to the next city because we don’t like to drive at night. We were lucky that Erik is pretty good at speaking Spanish and he found out that we could camp on the guarded parking lot of a hotel/restaurant.”

“The next day we reached Poptun where we stayed the whole afternoon in a cafe where we did work on the movies for YouTube (see videos under Guatemala Part 1) and selected photos. The following day we drove to Flores to get gas and go to the supermarket. Thereafter the plan was to discover the jungle of Peten, north of Tikal.”

“From Carmelita we were hoping to find a way to the “El Mirador”, a mayan temple which is near the border to Mexico. But they told us that the road is only passable on horses – i.e. too small and low for a Defender. So instead we did wilderness camping right next to a path in the jungle. The guys in Carmelita narrated something about a way to the Biotopo El Zott and from there to Uaxactun with a conection to Tikal. In the village “Cruces de Dos Aguas” (which you can’t find on the map) we arranged to get a guide for the trip. His name is Umbelino and he drove with Erik. So we found ourselves on the first muddy road to El Zott. The temple there is not yet excavated and has small, narrow caves. Now we could imaging how much work it is to dig this temples out for the tourists.”

“The way from El Zott to Uaxactun was a really hard part for the Defenders and us: three trees in the way, several lianas, rough road and one time the road was inaccessible because of brushwood and undergrowth. Umbelino cut a new crunchy way through the jungle with a machete and an axe. At the end of this adventure day we were glad to reach Uaxactun where Umbelino has a cousin. We parked in front of her house.”

“The next day there was so much mud on the road that we decided to abolish the idea of driving to “Rio Azul” and returned south to Tikal. A check of the Fender showed that there was no damage to the car. We visited the maya tempel of Tikal and met up with Erik later in Flores. The next day we said good-bye: Erik is on the way to Costa Rica to meet his parents and girlfriend, we are crossing the border to Belize.”