PART 2: GETTING LOST AND DRIVING ON DIRT ROADS
I don’t remember what clued us into the fact that we were driving the wrong way, but it had been an hour since we had seen the last sign for… anything, and we wanted to play it safe. After all, both my travel partner, Martin, and I were keen on making it to the top of Pico Duarte, the tallest mountain in the Caribbean. Getting lost in the forests at its base would make that hard and we didn’t have time to waste. With just two days to make our attempt (most people take at least three full days), a failure that morning meant the entire thing was off.
Luckily, Martin was fluent in Spanish, making turning around to ask for directions fruitful. Some people eating at a streetside restaurant pointed us down a road being re-paved when we told them the name of the town we were trying to reach.
“But you can’t go that way now,” one man remarked, gesturing at the heavy machinery blocking the way. I felt my heart sink. “There’s another road, but we’ll send someone with you, because it’s small and hard to find.” Another man put down his hard-earned lunch and dropped his conversations to hop on his motorcycle. We followed him back into town, and turned onto… a dirt road.
Let’s pause here to discuss dirt roads. Some dirt roads are no problem for almost any vehicle. Some dirt roads are fine for my Acura which can barely handle pot-holes on the freeway. Some dirt roads might as well be paved, because they are nice and flat and their only downside is all the dust you kick up driving on them.
This was not one of those dirt roads.
But there wasn’t much of a choice at that point. A kind man had stopped mid-lunch to guide us, and neither of us felt like we could turn back now. So, we followed that motor bike, on a road where divots and holes slowly grew where water ran and pooled into them when it rained. Then, up a steep hill that crested so sharply that I thought we might just balance out on the top and have to stay there. Onward our guide took us through construction sites, literally weaving our way between massive digging machines as they worked, and along roads with deep mud.
Finally we followed him through a little town with no sign to clue us in to its name, up an embankment, and into the dirt parking lot of Armando Bermudez National Park. Tina had lived up to her name as far as I was concerned. I was proud of her and me for making it to that point. Now, we just had to find the man that our friend had told us about, who would help us set up our trip and make it to the summit…
the Idea of traveling is awesome and I hope you make it to the Summit. your pictures look awesome!
Thanks! Part 3 will reveal if I made it or not. XD
Sounds like an exciting adventure! Have fun.
It was quite fun! Really glad I went.
not much of an adventure person but here you are, you sure had a good experience here, nice picture to illustrate even further the content of your post.
Thank you! It was hard to take pictures during the whole ordeal, but my buddy snapped a few for me because it was just too crazy of a story not to document.
This would be an exciting adventure! You never know where dirt roads will take you.
So true! You always just wish you had a car that you trusted on them. XD Not that Tina didn’t prove herself.
I’m not a fan of dirt roads. We took one from Highway 101 in Bradley to the coast one year, and parts of it scared me to death. I’m afraid your adventure here would have freaked me out. Glad you made it. Eager to see what happens next and if you are able to finish your planned hike.
All depends on the driver, and if you are near any cliffs. I’ve been on good and bad ones, but all the construction definitely didn’t help. I don’t like dodging between giant digging machines. 😛 Im glad we made it as well.
It sounds like quite an adventure. I would be nervous to travel on the dirt road, too. You left us with a cliffhanger there so I’m hoping there will be a part three to your adventure story!
Part three is coming soon! Thank for coming along for the ride (no pun intended).
WOW! I can’t wait to see part 3 to this awesome adventure!
Thank you! Coming very soon!
Andrea R Warren (@WaldorfFries)
Gutsy move! Sounds like an amazing adventure; scare yourself every day I always say.
Scare yourself everyday, I love it. Although sometimes I need a break from being scared. Like today! I’m lounging around in Christchurch because I’ve had quite the stressful trip so far. Almost broke my hand hiking!
I love your hiking adventures. I am slowly getting into hiking and finding it enjoyable. I
Hiking is wonderful! I am glad that you are slowly coming around to it.
Amazing pictures! This is an amazing travel piece!
Thank you so so much! <3