Ça monte dur dur !

Il y en a eu des belles montées pendant ces 31000 kilomètres parcourus. Mais de toute, la plus dure qui m’a obligé à poser pieds à terre et à descendre de ma monture de 70 kg, c’est celle-là, entre le Lac Atitlan – Panajachel et Solola (Guatemala) : 2,5km à 11% de moyenne par une chaleur tropicale sans air. Imaginez!

Il y eut aussi la longue montée entre Balsas et Celendin (Pérou), 45km et 2600m de dénivelé, mais par cette distance et les lacets réguliers, on a le temps de s’y habituer. Lire la suite


Protected Areas of Guatemala

Meeting with the National Council of Protected Areas (Consejo Nacional de Áreas Protegidas – CONAP) to know more about the biodiversity conservation strategy in Guatemala. We interviewed Licda. Astrid López: Chief of Cultural Heritage and Ecotourism Unit, Ing. Agr. Carlos Godoy: coordinator of SIGAP (Sistema de Guatemala de Áreas Protegidas) y Arq. Dafne Edith Domínguez: Technical Assistant of the General Technical Direction.
Photo en la oficina de CONAP, Ciudad de Guatemala

Photo en la oficina de CONAP, Ciudad de Guatemala

Its mission it to ensure the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity and protected areas of Guatemala, as well as natural goods and services provided to present and future generations, to coordinate and ensure implementation of policies, standards incentives and strategies in collaboration with other actors. Guatemala is megadiverse if we consider that it hosts 7 biomes, more than 15000 species. Here is the presentation for more information SIGAP y medio ambiente. Lire la suite

Jaguar Conservation and Protected Areas: Notable Project of Belize Audubon Society

Once more, we did not have chance to see many animals in this very rich in biodiversity protected area of Belize. The Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary is part of the Meso-American biocorridor running from Mexico to Panama.
Belize (government and NGOs) tackles environment conservation as a national priority, with an extensive protected areas system, co-management operations and very motivated and skilled teams. The Belize Audubon Society, a renowned conservation organization, welcomed us and organize our amazing stay in Cockscomb. During two nights (entrance fee 10$/person, camping 20$/night/person), we really felt like sleeping in the middle of the rainforest, surrounded by animal noises. That was magic! Good to know that natural and easily accessible paradises still exist on Earth.

Lire la suite

Low-key Eco-Center del « Corazon del Bosque »

I had the opportunity to spend two incredible nights in the heart of the forest. It was so quiet and relaxing, beyond the loud sound of the Panamerican highway.

Once upon a time…

With the President of the Cooperative Sr. Miguel Angel  Cochoy

With the President of the Cooperative Sr. Miguel Angel Cochoy

In the 70’s, the poor community of Santa Lucia Utitlan (4 cantons) welcomed the Father Arturo, coming from the US. Looking at the poverty and illiteracy, he pushed for the creation of a farming and multiservice cooperative Santa Lucia in 1973 to buy land, develop wheat and potato cultivation, and operate a bus transit to the nearer village college. Then, the community could count on its own professionals: agronomist, foresters, accountant, administrative officer…
From the Father’s idea, began a huge project of cuniculture, that reached to employ 500 people and export rabbit meat in all the country. Because of a bad milionary investment, all sank as quick as it appears, obliging to sell lands. At that time began the civil war. Father Arturo left Guatemala after 20 years and collectivism wasn’t a good idea because of communism.
The cooperative Sta Lucia shut down and a new one was established « La Guadalupana » with its sister the Association « La Guadalupana ». Their objective was to recover land for agricultural purpose, with the donations of its associates. Lire la suite

Hospitality in Central America

If there is one thing we can learn by crossing Central America is the hospitality of people. Yes, this is incredible how they want to inform you (even if they do not know the answer), help or host you.

After Mexico, this is the case also in Guatemala. Despite the atmosphere of insecurity in the country, making people scared of neighbours, foreigners, most of the people will help you.
This is particularly the case with firemen. When we have trouble or no plan to sleep for the night, we go to ask at the fire station, and til now, 100% open to receive our two big bikes and our sweating faces.
A balance after feeling bad by riding our bicycle through the country where we witnessed so many incivilities and disrespect…
Nothing is black or white, you see!

Here is a video with original music when we arrived at the fire station yesterday