Guatemala.

imageBit of a catch up post, Guatemala is now over and done. Left San Cristobal and Mexico with Sebastiaan, from Belgium, backpacking the last 6 months down from New York, now giving biking a try. Pretty sweet to be riding with company again.

image Sebastiaan.

image Relinquishing the relative coolness of the mountain heights of San Cristobal, descending to the jungle below.

image Where waterfalls make the perfect afternoon rest stop. The road from San Cristobal to the Mayan ruins at Palenque boasts two huge falls, where everyone goes. The road from Palenque along the Guatemalan border also hosts several waterfalls, a little smaller, but much less crowded and great places to relax.

image 7am river crossing to Guatemala.

image Where we’re welcomed and escorted through the village.

image The first two days across the border are spent crushing a hardpacked dirt road to Flores. Great riding, if a tad dusty.

image Ever present heat = frequent drink stops.

image At Flores, meet up with Stanford friends Anne and Kamil to explore the Mayan ruins of Tikal. Great choice for spring break, guys! Thanks for visiting!

image Tikal temple.

image Looming high, steps to the sky.

image Photo credit to Anne/Kamil.

image Credit again to Anne.

image After a few days rest, back on the road, heading into the mountains to Semuc Champey. First on asphalt…

image Then onto 24hrs of loose and rocky climbing, up, down, breathless, recover, struggle another few hundred meters, repeat. Practicing for the Andes again.

image Up high, at the end of the steepest section, Jorge and his family offer us a place to sleep for the night.

image Setting out the next day, after a few hours a forced rest stop waiting for the road to clear.

image And finally, the start of the descent.

image To the Semuc Champey pools. Time to swim!

image A short rest first.

image Water park playground.

image

image From Semuc, we head back east to the Caribbean coast and into Honduras. The last stretch of road to the border is lined by some of the banana and pineapple plantation remnants of United Fruit Company and Standard Fruit Company. Proximity to which ensures plenty of cheap roadside fruit vendors.

image Next up: Honduras, country #5.

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