Where Rolando Leads... Lucy, Allison, and I Will Follow

You really can’t beat the beauty of Pico Bonito National Park in Honduras. Lucy, Allison, and I arrived by ferry to the city of La Ceiba on the north coast and Caribbean side of the country and quickly made our way to the Omega Tours Eco Jungle Lodge located near the eastern most boundary of the park next to the Cangrejal River.

Silvia and Udo run the lodge offering lovely hospitality and natural beauty everywhere you turn. Having just a day and a half in the area, we were immediately introduced to an equally lovely tour guide… Rolando. Silvia assured us that he was knowledgable about the forest and local communities – which proved positively true. We were joined by Rolando’s grandfather, Alejandro, who at eighty years of age is still strong as an ox.

While ascending foothills in the Nombre de Dios Mountain Range we came upon a huge tree – or at least remnants of a huge tree that is now victim to a strangler fig. Rolando began climbing and of course we followed.

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Guide Rolando and Lucy climbing a columnar tree.

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Coming out of Nombre de Dios Park, we walk through local communities and ask Rolando many questions. Here we are with Alejandro at a primary school where one of Rolando’s children attends.

 

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We meet Silvia, Udo, and dog Bullet along the road.

Our next activity was to climb into the low lying tropical rain forest of Pico Bonito toward its cloud forest – or at least as far as El Bejucco Waterfall. The forest is stunning. This is probably the most diverse area in Central America.

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We cross the Cangrejal River to enter Pico Bonito National Park. Rolando is in the lead followed by Lucy and Allison.

 

Pico Bonito, declared a national park in 2006, is the second largest national park in Honduras. The total land area is 1,073 square kilometers with over 270,000 acres of unexplored rain forest.

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Rolando at El Bejucco waterfall.

 

We were tired, yes, but Rolando was impressed with the three of us and had to believe every word of our gorilla-volcano-hiking stories we shared with him.

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Rolando crossing the Cangrejal River.

 

We were down the mountain and heading back to Omega Lodge with one last cross over of the Cangrejal, this time on a 400-foot-long hanging bridge.

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Rolando took us to other wild places the following day. Coming up next!

 

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