Along the Natchez Trace

Friday, February 12, 2016

Our 7 Mile Hike to San Pancho....

Memo had planned a long hike for Thursday...  we'd all take the bus from Lo de Marcos down to Las Lomas and from there walk the road to the crossroads that would take us over to San Pancho.  He'd estimated it would take 2 to 2.5 hours.  He had 15 participants in this hike...  and... as usual.... it became quite the adventure....
Memo gave anyone who wanted a bag of Yaka...  a fruit that has enough sugar to give us that extra "oomph" to make the trek...  but to me...  I can't stand it!  Honest...  it smells like someone upchucked the whole mess.  Guess I'll never make it as anything but a gringa here...

 We all met at the plaza (all 16 of us) and took the 8:00 bus down to Las Lomas...

 And from there headed up the road.  At first it was a paved road, but quickly became a hard packed dirt road...

Since Bill & I were here just a week or so ago, we knew where the turn off was...

At the road indicating that the Orchid Gardens were to the left.... that's our turn

 And we did...
But at the Orchid Gardens, we learned, from the signs, that this was not their usual visitor time and that it was necessary to arrange for a tour ahead of time...  The above collage is of the view outside the gates of the Orchid Gardens.

That's Memo, showing us the palm tree fruits that are used to make palm oil.  Also, those tiny coconut-like fruits are loved by dogs here...  they'll chew on them... making their teeth pearly white as well as giving them a "dental hygienist" okay for their checkup.

 A lot of hills...  and as hard as these hills were to walk up, the views from the top were fantastic!

Memo likes to point out these palm trees...  A bird likes a particular kind of plum... carries the plum to the nest (high up in the tree)..  eats the plum, but spits out the seed.  And...  defecates close to the nest... So the seed more or less gets planted... sends out the new growth, which will drop down. Eventually it gets to the earth and takes root....  Those take on life... and will send up sprouts...  enveloping the tree... eventually choking out the tree... killing it totally...  and the new growth will be the dominate plant.  Kind of an interesting facet of survival of the fittest or Mother Nature in action, huh?
 If we finally got to a hill top or something similar, Memo would stop and take a head count....  giving all the hikers a chance to catch our breath before we moved on....

 We were truly in the jungle...
I don't know what your thoughts were as you were growing up as to what a jungle really was, but ...  except I heard no bongo drums in the distance, this place was truly the jungles of my childhood imagination.

 Another check-point...  Memo making sure that all of us were still accounted for...

 Now, how many time have you come across a budha meditation retreat when you're out in the wilderness?  Quite serene and totally unimpressed with our somewhat rowdy group as we passed by.

 Occasionally the views were fantastic!

We'd somewhat (well, I won't say "lost our way") but weren't sure which fork of the road to take up the road a ways.  We met up with some folks and they were heading towards San Pancho.  They said they'd leave us a marker as to when to turn down the road.  Sure enough..  we came across this make-shift arrow with the paper cup at the tip.  We all laughed...  but were thankful for our thoughtful friends, whom we'd never met before.  That's just the way it is here...

 Our friend, Chris, who is from a place called "Fairfield"...  this is just for him/

 Finally, we're in the city limits of San Pancho...  those cobblestone streets were hard to walk on, but I think we all were so relieved to be here, we really didn't care.

All 16 of us made it!  Several chose to catch their breath at the nearby coffee shop.. but

Bill, Memo and I chose to head for the "smoothie" place.  I really needed something cold and wet...  and preferably with something to give me the energy to get back home.  That's Bill and Memo...

We  all regrouped again and headed west towards the bus stop.  But... wait...  there's more.  We stopped at a very unique place before boarding the bus and heading back to Lo de Marcos.  
But I've posted so many photos today...  that will be for tomorrow.

That's all For Today!


  1. Phew, that was so much easier to read about than consider actually doing it ;) Thanks for sharing.

  2. Great walk, fab views and interesting write up. What else could I want in my arm chair.

  3. What a great day and sounds like a fun group !

  4. Your walks are adventures. That does look like the jungle I think about, as if a Jaguar is watching with fiery eyes you'll never see, monkeys swing tree to tree, and suddenly, the jungle goes very very quiet. You, walking, get a tingle in your spine and freeze. Oh my imagination taking off.

  5. All of these hikes with Memo certainly has made your stay interesting!

  6. Headcounts are essential! Good job you didn't have to pack someone out.