Friday, December 5, 2014

12-4-2014 Float Trip in Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary

Terry, a friend of our hosts (and now a friend of ours), invited us to do a river float trip through nearby Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary.  We went with Terry, his father Bob, Pamela (co-owner of Windschief in Hopkins, which has guest houses and a bar), and Guido (from Rome, who owns a teak farm near the mountains of Belize).  Our photos of the river didn't turn out, but Terry was nice enough to send us the ones he took (thanks so much, Terry!).

This gives you an idea of the road to the preserve.  This part actually looks pretty good - no giant holes (very common).

In addition to the river float trip, there are lots of hiking trails to check out.  We plan to return.

Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary is also the world's first jaguar preserve!  We didn't see any jaguars that day, though we
saw fresh tracks from a tapir (which looks kind of like an anteater, but is much bigger).

There is a nice little museum at Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary

Jaguar skull

We saw this interesting vehicle in the parking area.  A couple was traveling from Alaska to Patagonia in this rig powered by
recycled vegetable oil.

The nice hike through the jungle to the put-in.  Since you hike past the take-out to the put-in spot, you can actually do the
float trip over and over again if you like.

Cara, Eric, Bob, Pamela, Terry and Guido (left to right).  We're all ready to get on the water in our old school inner tubes.

Guido (in the foreground), Cara and Bob behind him


The water was cool and refreshing, and the company was wonderful!

Terry's father, Bob, enjoying the float

Approaching the take out point

On our way out of the preserve we visited the site of a plane wreck in the jungle.

Due to a thunderstorm, researchers monitoring the jaguars in Cockscomb Basin lost control of their plane on take-off and
crashed into a tree.  There were only minor injuries, except to the plane, which was left to the jungle to reclaim.

Another view of the wrecked plane

It's pretty amazing that everyone in the plane walked away.

It started pouring down rain just after we got to the plane wreck.  Taking refuge under the wings seemed to work
for everyone except Cara, who the biting ants apparently loved.  She had to endure the downpour and jump in the
creek to wash them off her feet.

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