Join the Baja Bush Pilots as again, we head south exploring Guatemala, Honduras, Costa Rica, and Panama. Our trip this year begins in both Durango Texas and Key West Florida with our first night in Tikal, Guatemala.
Monday, January 8
All will gather on the island of Flores to greet and meet all that are coming into Guatemala for the start of CenAm 07. Why Flores, it is a natural gathering place for all coming from the states. And many, including myself, will fly direct from the US without the need to stop in Mexico. An island city, the airport (MGTK) is located just across the man-built causeway in Santa Elena. One of the unique features of Flores is that as it is an island, you cannot get lost. Confused, just start walking either direction and you will come back to where you started. We will all gather at one of the bars overlooking the lake and approach to watch and listen to fellow BBP members make their descent and landing at the airport. There we will have our first social and dinner. The next morning, after breakfast, it is out to the airport for our departure to Copan,
Tuesday & Wednesday, January 9 & 10
Copan was and still is a very remote and friendly little village nestled in a valley in Honduras. However, with the completion of the paved road from Guatemala, it will be changing. Enjoy it while you can.
Our hotel is located on the central square which is also center of town. It is a short walk anywhere from here. There are small shops to buy things, places to eat, and people to watch. Here you can also take a horseback ride, go up to the hot springs, or walk through a coffee plantation. Copan is also the home of the Ruinas Copan, one of the larger and more interesting Mayan ruins in Central America. The airport that is used to get into Copan is very interesting. In fact, it is so interesting that we might not use it. In the past, when the clouds were below the tops of the mountains, you would fly through the valleys (really narrow valleys) following the river to the airport. We are not going to do that this year. If the clouds are down, we will be landing at a different airport in Guatemala where we will provide a bus to take us across the border to Copan.
We spend two nights in Copan with departure Thursday morning to Roatan.
Thursday & Friday, January 11 & 12
For our first time, we are going out to the bay islands of Honduras. Here we will be staying at an up-scale resort in the Caribbean. We have several BBP members who live in Roatan who have invited us to visit their island. Here you will find diving, snorkeling, fishing, swimming, or just catching some rays....
Barra del Colorado, Costa Rica
Saturday & Sunday, January 13 & 14
Another first for us, we will be going to Barra del Colorado in Costa Rica. Situated close to the Costa Rican border with Nicaragua, the tiny village of Barra del Colorado sits protected amidst the swampy area of the Refugio Barra del Colorado in Limon province. A wild and mysterious area, this area is a favorite among eco- tourists and adventurers because there is plenty to see and much to do here, such as sport fishing, bird watching, canoeing and discovering the unique wildlife of this region. Located in the very Northeast corner of Costa Rica, the only way to get there is either by air or by a long long boat ride.
Monteverde, Costa Rica
Monday & Tuesday, January 15 & 16
Today we depart Barra del Colorado for the short flight into San Jose. Here, we will board our charted bus for the several hour ride up to Monteverde. I stayed in Monteverde in 1998 when I was taking Spanish lessons. It is a must see. There are no words to describe this area. Located in deep jungle at 4,600’, this is nature’s paradise. Here you will see native plants, running streams, all kinds of exotic birds, and a host of reptiles. And this is also home to Costa Rica’s cloud forest. Here you can do a canopy ride suspended on a cable or walk a trail through the forest that includes several swinging bridges that take you across canyons high above the ground. This is also where you can get very wet very fast. When nature says it is time to rain, it does so with almost no warning. Then, on Wednesday morning after breakfast, we will depart via charted bus back down to San Jose taking a side trip past Volcano Arenal.
San Jose, Costa Rica
Monday, January 17 (one night)
A tradition that must be continued, we will be going back into San Jose for one night for fuel and our traditional lobster dinner at the Costa Rica Grand Hotel. If you have not been there for the past three years, you have not been there. It has been completely remodeled and refurbished. Improvements include moving the casino out of the lobby and into the bar, (they now have a real bar) expanding the dining area, and more. And, Rudy, our maiter’d from the Baja Rios will be our host at the Grand.
Panama City, Panama
Thursday, January 18
We depart San Jose early on Thursday for the short flight to Panama City. And, as the route of flight takes you across the middle of Panama and then on in to Panama City, you will have a great view of the Panama Canal to your left as you come in.
We will be staying in the heart of the business and tourist district. Here you are also within one or two blocks of the commercial shopping district. Need shoes, socks or a new tie, this is the place. And that evening we will have our farewell social and dinner. The following morning, some will depart back to the states, some will re-visit places that we went to on the way down, and some will stay one or two more days. And, when you depart Panama City’s MPMG airport, normal takeoff is 36 and then a slight left turn. This puts you up about 1,000’ and just to the right of the Miraflores locks. Have your camera ready.
CenAm 07, the ultimate Baja Bush Pilots Experience.
|Barra del Colorado||Two|
|Airport||Surface||Elevation||Runway length / width|
|BRO||Paved||22||7,400 / 150|
|EYW||Paved||3||4,801 / 100|
|MGTK||Paved||427||9,842 / 150|
|Copan (Estansula ?)||Grass|
|MHRO||Paved||18||7,349 / 150|
|MRBC||Paved||10||3,281 / 40|
|MRPV||Paved||3261||5,520 / 60|
|MPMG||Paved||31||5,892 / 100|
|From (airport)||To (airport)||Miles|