03/24 Got down to the dock at 8am ready to head down the river. The tour left a little closer to 10am because they wanted a full boat (15 people) so we hung out and talked to a guy from Guatemala (OK, Pete talked to him; I listened).
The ride down the canyon was not disappointing. The first thing we saw was a crocodile sunning on the bank of the river. It wasn’t quite the first time I’ve ever seen a croc since there’s a place in Florida that has both alligators and crocodiles living in the same place but it was pretty sweet to see one 10 feet away (Flamingo in Everglades National Park has both and I think its the only place in the world that does). The massive canyon walls were also a sight. Seeing what 3,200 feet looks like when you are looking up from the bottom of it puts things in perspective when we just rode up 5000 feet the day before. It was also cool when you realize that the canyon was formed when the earth just split apart (the canyon is actually a fault line).
Next we spotted some spider monkeys in the huge trees lining the river. It was hard to get a good shot of them because they were pretty high up but we saw at least 3. We ended up seeing even more monkeys on the way back and another crocodile. Glad I wore a hat because there’s no shade and no canopy over the boat. At US $12 for a 2 hour guided tour it was money well spent.
I found another hotel close by (Hotel Posada Real) that is a million times better than this place so I’m moving this afternoon. They have internet access and AC so I was sold pretty quick. Pete will give my key to this place back to the guy in the morning because he’s staying here. I’m not going to ask for a refund it would be too much of a hassle for $7. I doubt I’d get it anyway. I barely got any sleep last night thanks to the traffic, people talking outside my window (that doesn’t close), alarms going off and the dogs barking. The pillows (with no pillow cases) look like they were rolled in mud and Pete said his blanket had glitter on it so it’s doubtful that was washed after the last guest/dancer slept in it.
Met up with Pete for dinner. On the way to get him Belinda spotted me walking down the street! Her and Roland just finished the boat tour and were on their way back out of town. How I keep running into them in such random places blows my mind.
The ride tomorrow is going to be crazy. I’m fairly certain that I’ll be climbing for over 5,600 feet. San Cristobal is basically uphill for 35 miles. I’ll also be on the toll road so water is going to be scarce and the temperature is probably going to break 100 F. Bring it!