It was too early to catch a bus to Bullet Tree Falls according to the schedule we'd seen, so we hopped into one of the many waiting taxis on Burns Avenue and asked the driver, Mike, to take us to Cohune Palms. Unfortunately, upon arriving there and talking to a worker, we found out they did not have any mountain bikes to rent. Perhaps they had in the past, but no longer. Kinda reminded us of the Mexican restaurant being closed the day before -- was this trip doomed to be one of many disappointments? (Answer: no.)
So, we moved onto Plan B and asked Mike if he could take us up to El Pilar. At first he seemed a bit unsure, as his taxi was a small Geo that did not have 4WD, but I guess he figured he better give it a try as the fare would certainly be much better than he'd make in a day hanging out in San Ignacio with many other cabs competing for not many tourists. He quoted us a price of $50 US to drive us there, wait for us to hike and bird-watch, and drive us back to San Ignacio, so we decided to go for it. This ended up being a great decision as it was a very difficult slog up a messy, rocky road, and even on mountain bikes would have been a challenge. Had Plan A worked out, we might not have had any energy left for hiking after biking the mostly uphill, messy road, as it turned out. This photo does NOT do the road justice. Many portions were steeper, with deeper ruts and larger rocks. Mike really had to take it slowly and carefully in his little car, and he bottomed out on some of the worst parts. Fortunately for us, he made it to the top!
Barry got some great shots with his 12x zoom lens, but the monkeys weren't as close as they look in the photos (good thing!) since these have been cropped.
I hadn't even thought of seeing monkeys here, so I was very excited that we had this opportunity. Soon thereafter, we started seeing birds, and plenty of them, including this exotic Black-Headed Trogan, another new bird for our life lists.
As I mentioned in yesterday's entry, we'll do a blog posting showing many more bird pictures at the end of this trip report, since there are already tons of photos for each day without including them here.
We did, however, run into a bit of road traffic on our way back to San Ignacio...