Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Kayaking in Englishtown, Toledo, Belize

The weather was so incredibly wonderful when we were in Belize back in October.  The seas were mirror flat almost all day long every day we were there; perfect for kayaking.  I spent at least 30 hours kayaking, most of it by myself, although Sue and I had a nice morning out one day.  We set out from Chris and Sue's place in central Englishtown, since they had the kayaks.  We had started to head north along the coast, but soon decided to head east over to Great Monkey Cay (pronounced "key").  I took my snorkel gear and was able to get in a little snorkeling while Sue relaxed in the sunshine and recaptured my kayak when it drifted off.  ;-)   The water was flat enough to take a route to the outside of Great Monkey Cay and loop around to the south to visit Little Monkey Cay.  Little Monkey Cay is a rookery for assorted egrets, pelicans, and frigate birds that settle down there every evening.  Throughout the day you can find bird activity there.  Little Monkey Cay was almost demolished by Hurricane Iris in 2001.  It has slowly been coming back, although it is still nowhere close to its former glory.
Sue and I heading off to the north.
The sea was flat enough that I felt comfortable taking my cameras with me in the little "sit upon" kayak.
The map below shows the routes of the trips that I took.  The three thumbtacks mark the three households in Englishtown with full-time residents.  Note that the map is oriented with north to the right so that I could get more coastline in the image.  Great Monkey Cay is at the bottom in the center and Little Monkey Cay it to the left.  The route that Sue and I took is in red.  Right above little Monkey Cay is the entrance to Black Creek which runs behind our place marked with the leftmost thumbtack.  That kayak route (yellow) is a good one when the open sea is too rough for a  little kayak.  
Monkey River Village (labeled "town" in Google Earth, but at only 250 or so inhabitants is barely a village) is at the mouth of the meandering Monkey River at the left of the image.  Howler monkeys give the river its name.  You can see the Monkey River Road leading inland.  This dirt road is frequently impassable during the rainy season.
Two other kayak routes I took followed little creeks or dredged canals back into the marshes.  I spent hours nosing along in these little creeks.  Incredible birds, wonderful plants; never saw another person - my idea of heaven.

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10 comments:

  1. Wow! what a trip Wilma. The water looks great.
    "Hang on to your Kayak Mrs." {:))

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  2. Wow that was an incredible route! Beautiful pictures and probably very ncie adventure you had...

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  3. Roy - yes, it is bad news to lose your kayak. It's a long swim back. :-)

    Chris - Like Maria Muldaur (remember her song about brand new roller skates?), I don't go too fast, but I go pretty far. I'll have some photos in upcoming posts.

    cheers,
    Wilma

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  4. I used to kayak when I was a teenager but never on such calm exotic waters.

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  5. Away from others for a while - my idea of heaven as well.

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  6. Frank - I love white water rafting and poking along on slow rivers in a canoe, but this kayaking in the marshes is food for the soul.

    John - that isolation makes it easy to become one with nature.

    thanks for visiting and commenting.

    cheers,
    wilma

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  7. Looks like paradise Wilma..........

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  8. Wilma,

    I'm looking to travel to Monkey River Town in May, but I'm having trouble getting anyone there on the phone. Every number I find has been disconnected. Would you happen to know a phone number or the name of an inn or something?

    Thanks in advance.

    Gerald Fowler (gerald-fowler@sbcglobal.net)

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    Replies
    1. Hi Gerald - I sent an email with details to the address you have listed, but a got a notice that you have a new address. Let me know if you received the one I sent.

      cheers,
      Wilma

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