Portobelo, on the Caribbean, is a beautiful, poor and threatening little town. Vultures

But anyway, earlier Eddie and I meet up at Joe Hummer’s place where my forks have been serviced and Lucinda’s cleared to go. It’s not the day to work on the suspension as we’re going for a ride instead.

We head off from the Pacific to the Caribbean. This doesn’t lose its novelty and this time we’re headed north when we get there. First we go through the town of Sabanitas. Eddie says don’t stop, don’t get off the bike. Well after this long in CA I’m ok at deciding what’s safe and what’s not and agree with him.

Then it’s a great ride through the country and we arrive here, Panama Divers

A boat load of divers are headed off. Eddie and I talk about going for a dive but we’re told the visibility’s no good due to runoff

So we have lunch. Fish and chips, some strange fried thing with an octopus sauce and pineapple juice. Yum

Uh oh. Someone’s getting CPR on the dock. But it’s just a dive exam

Arggh! Not that there’s anything wrong with that

After lunch we head north to the ruins of Bateria Santiago, built by the Spanish in 1739 after an attack by the British

Not much left

The fort was built of coral


We bumped into yet another Canadian rider, Tyler, who was from Edmonton and was headed to SA. He was complaining about being burned out and was planning to recuperate for 3 months in Colombia. A young guy, he was getting a boat from this port to Cartegena. He’d recently broken 2 ribs surfing.

Then it was off to our destination, Portobelo. This is about as favourable a shot as is possible

The town was built to the edge of the fort

After the Spanish left, the slaves became the new occupants. They’re Afro Antillean and worship a black Jesus

The town

Small streams ran through it

It looks picturesque from the fort

But not a place to hang out.

On our way back a storm rolled in very quickly. Lightning was hitting all around us. The rain was so intense visibility was reduced to a few hundred feet. Eddie hadn’t brought a rain suit so we rode through without stopping. In fact if you wanted to stop you couldn’t because all the possible places under bridges were taken by cars taking shelter, which should give you an idea of how ferocious these tropical storms can be.

Today’s track
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