Sunday, October 09, 2011

Cave Tubing & Tacos

We had to leave right at 8 am for the tour in Belize – we are going cave tubing!! I’m a little concerned as we are both out of shape and now definitely middle aged. I hope we can keep up as I hear it’s a little bit physical. Belize is interesting. It used to be called British Honduras but became its own country in the early 70s. I was surprised that there are only 312000 people in the whole country and they have the highest literacy rate in Central American at 93 percent. 

From the port, it was an hour and fifteen minute bus ride to the site. Mostly is was this type of scenery but the last 20 minutes or so was big time jungle. Then we suited up: inner tube, check! Helmut, check! Life Vest, check! Watershoes, check! Bug spray – ummm, well you remember the Prevacid? I think I left the bug spray sitting beside it so we’re just going to have to run the gauntlet of mosquitos!

 Hi ho, hi ho, its hiking through the jungle we go! Actually I was expecting the jungle to be hotter. As a veteran of jungles in Jamaica, Puerto Rico, Panama, Costa Rica and other rather steamy locations, this one was pretty pleasant. Not too hot – until you are suited up in all that gear!! And why can’t anyone make a life vest that circulates air?? 

We waded through the water coming out of the mouth of this giant cave. The water was crystal clear and very cold which was something to look forward to after our hike! There are no animals other than some very tame fish because the big bad reptiles thankfully don’t like cold water. Anyway we slogged across the river then up the opposite bank which entailed climbing three flights of stairs. That was the hardest part of the hike which was very mild. The trail was wide and easy to navigate and had very few inclines at all so no big deal. Its just that you sweat off about ten pounds carrying the gear!

Of course once you reach the entrance to the cave and plop on your butt in the inner tube, that cold water feels great. Its like a cool lazy river flowing through these caves. We all had headlamps attached to our helmets and they gave us light as we floated through the caves. Pretty awesome. After about an hour we ended right where we started. They had cooked some great chicken tacos all homemade and they were great. We did way better than I thought we would for being so out of shape and had no problem at all. And we didn’t get eaten alive by the mosquitoes, though a big swarm followed us all the way through the jungle!
Of course when we got back to the boat we took a looooong nap – that heat really takes it out of you!

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