You Best Fuckin’ Belize it: Day Two

Morning of our 2nd day was the complete opposite of our previous. The sun was raging by 7am; it would easily be in the high 80’s today. I quickly forgot about the shitty Philadelphia winter I left behind, and was fully adjusted to the Caribbean climate.
Bike Pano
Today started with a trip back to see Emma at Alternate Adventures. Last night when having dinner down the road, Waldo’s bike was knocked over and the clutch lever snapped. Emma was understanding and gave Waldo a new bike as it was quicker for her to swap the bike than the lever. Waldo getting a new bike daily would be a theme of this trip… more of that to come. Emma also hooked us up with some tips on where to rip in true dirt fashion after doing what we planned on doing today, which of course was more dirt biking, hiking, waterfalls and swimming.

After leaving Emma’s, we grabbed a breakfast of fry jack w/ eggs, beans, and bacon; plus more of that sad excuse for coffee… truly my only complaint of the entire trip. Fry jacks are a deep fried triangular shaped dough that taste like funnel cake. You just rip them open and shove all your breakfast foods inside before devouring them in their deep fried, delicious glory.

The goal today was Antelope Falls in the Mayflower Bocawina National Park.

Antelope Falls

We packed what we would need for the day and headed out. This time heading north on the Southern Highway, with plenty of speed humps to bump jump along the way. The turnoff to Bocawina was only 4 miles up the Southern just north of the town of Silk Grass. We headed west towards the Mayan Mountains, the road very similar to the one going into Cockscomb. Zipping through more citrus grove’s and teak farms, we soon wound up at the Mayflower Bocawina visitor’s center. Again we paid our entrance fee, changed into more appropriate hiking gear, and left our stuff with the park rangers. The heat was in full effect and I was in heaven. The path started out in jungle flatlands. We saw more wildlife, including the Agouti, the smaller cousin of the Gibnut or Paca; imagine a small Capybara with skinny rabbit like legs. At first we were excited to see this exotic rodent, but as the trip wore on we saw plenty. Turns out the Agouti is a pretty common animal to see. The flatlands soon turned into steep steps running parallel with large waterfall. Towards the apex, the stairs turned into rope climbs. We had to scramble up rocks while using the ropes to be able to pull ourselves all the way to the top of the trail. Before finding the falls, we stumbled upon a lookout point that gave us a clear view of a large chunk of the Stann Creek District extending all the way out to the Caribbean Sea. When we came upon the falls, crystal clear cold waters awaited us. We had the whole place to ourselves and wasted no time in diving in its pool to cool off. There were some small rock overhangs we we able to monkey up and jump into the pool…too much fun. After a quick snack and hydrating, we took the same path back down. At this point our legs were on fire from all the hiking up the mountain sides. On the way down we could hear the screams of joy in a group of people rappelling down the larger waterfall. I’ll have to try that out next time I come.
Hike Falls

Waldo Rope
Lookout

A video posted by Nate King (@natemking) on

We took a decent break at the visitor’s center, but soon found that the mosquitos were making us their lunch. Fresh northern blood is a delicacy to those pests. Not enough Deet could save us from their sanguine smorgasbord. We ended up going through two whole cans of Off in 6 days. We too were hungry, so we headed to the restaurant that was at the Bocawina Eco-lodge. After stuffing our faces in veggie covered nachos, shrimp tacos, and a garden fresh caprese sandwich, we headed back out the way we came.

Bikes at Bocawina
Lunch

I took the road that Emma had suggested that morning. It was a farm access road plenty rutted and muddy, blasting between teak farms as far as the eye could see. This was the road I was looking for. A true 3rd world dirt biking experience. Sadly it would be cut short and the road would not be completed. I was leading and had just come around a bend that was the top of a small decline. The rocks and ruts were deep and strong. I stood up, leaned back and throttled through making sure to go nowhere near that troublesome front brake. I arrived at the bottom of the decline and ripped open the throttle on a flatland section but soon heard the beep of Waldo’s bike behind me. I stopped and looked back to see his bike on its side. He did not survive the rut and must have hit that front brake on the way down. I rode back to help him get the bike up so we could continue on but when I saw his right forearm, I knew we would be turning back. You take on a risk when tearing up on dirt bikes in the tropics in only a t shirt. Waldo took that risk and lost. His arm was looking pretty gnarly and bleeding real bad. I was relieved knowing nothing was broken seeing that we were out there with no help around for miles. The bike took on some damage too: bent handlebars, a cracked fairing, and a destroyed rearview. Nothing bad at all, but it would be costing Waldo a little extra with Emma. I decided that we needed to turn around and head to the closest town of Dangriga to find a pharmacy and get supplies to clean his fresh wound out. All he needs is to get an infection in Central America. Who needs souvenirs when you can go home with a scar to remember the trip by forever? After wrapping his forearm with a bandana to try and stop the bleeding, we took our time getting back to the Southern Highway and headed north.

Dangriga was another 10 miles out. We got these little bikes ripping at 60mph on the way there. They can haul ass for what they are. They do seem to be geared more for the highway than the dirt, but can still handle their own in it. Dangriga is a pretty rough looking town and is the capital of Garifuna culture. Garifuna people are mixed-race descendants of African, Carib, and Arawak peoples with a language and culture all their own. In town we found a pharmacy which happened to be a gas station, ice cream parlor, and gym. Talk about a one stop shop. Waldo got some peroxide and bandages and we field dressed the wound in the parking lot. I suggested he run back in for neosporin, but found the pharmacist had left in the ten minute span of him coming outside. He was okay, but wanted to get back to Hopkins to get ahold of Emma. I figured we could get more medical supplies back in Hopkins.

Back in Hopkins we discovered that the little Chinese Markets didn’t have shit for medical supplies outside of IBUprofen, Ben Gay, and pregnancy tests. It made us wonder what the residents do when they get hurt; I guess you just don’t. Luckily the proprietor of the hostel had a first aid kit that Waldo raided.

Waldo Bandage

I got cleaned up and took in the evening in a hammock in the hostels courtyard. I gave Waldo some pointers on riding dirt, being that this week was his first time on it. He wasn’t happy I waited till now to give the advice, but sometimes you have to take the test before you can learn the lesson. I struck up a conversation with a guy from Seattle named Judd. He saw my Chin on the Tank shirt and instantly wanted to talk old vintage bikes. Judd is a big Norton and Triumph guy. We shot the shit on all realms of old shitty bikes and adventures. He too rented a Meilun from Emma, except he went for over a week going as far south as Punta Gorda and as far north as Corozal. Judd was a solid dude. It’s always great to meet other riders and just swap stories of all things you’ve done and seen along the way. While talking with Judd, I didn’t even notice that Waldo had left until he came back. He and Emma had gone back to Alternate Adventures and swapped bikes yet again. Third times the charm, right?

Soon the sun set and we dined on the best jerk chicken we have ever had. We went easy on the Belikins and rum, though we did not abstain from them. A very early morning and a long ride to St Herman’s cave in the Cayo district for a cave tubing trip lay ahead. Life is good.

A video posted by Formerly Odlaw (@rudi_mentary) on

One response to “You Best Fuckin’ Belize it: Day Two”

  1. Adam says:

    I love that you were rocking the COTT shirt on the trip. Glad it helped you meet another rider.

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