Towards the end of my stay i wanted to climb the Indians Nose Lake Atitlan for a sunrise view over lake. The view point is situated high above the towns of San Juan and San Marcos. As this was an early start i had to stay in San Pedro for the night as the tour departed from there.
Meeting up with the guide at 3.45 a.m. we made our way to the chicken bus for our 45 minute drive to the drop off point. I would say the bus averaged 8-9 mph over the journey as it was either on cobbled roads in towns, good concrete roads on steep inclines with hair pin bends, or broken roads filled with deep pot holes and ruts. I felt sorry for the locals who endured this everyday on their way to work ! At least i knew is was going to get off soon and never do the journey again.
After we jumped off the bus we headed down a road and then between a couple of houses following alley ways, paths and dirt tracks. My guide was stopped more than once and entered into long discussions with locals who were clearly telling him the way to go. He stuck to his guns twice but was convinced by the last man and we changed our route. After a 15 minute walk we started to climb steeply and we all soon got out of breath stopping 3/4 times until we made the top.
We waited a short while for the sun to start to rise but you could already see the three main volcanos. Also in the background you could see the volcanos in Antigua (over 50 kms away) with one of them occasionally blowing a puff of smoke just to let you know its there.
This was where we climbed, Indian nose, can you see it ?!
We climbed down from the top this time without my thighs burning but with my knees and calf muscles twitching. Instead of the chicken bus we selected a mini bus and then changed as it was far too comfortable to a tuk tuk. The tuk tuk had to contend with the same pot holes, deep ruts, steep inclines, sandy roads, stray dogs, numerous speed bumps and other tuk tuk drivers. Its not a job i would want, i bet all your arm and shoulder joints are shot to pieces by the time you are 30. I reckon theres a rest home full of ex-tuk tuk drivers, arms in slings, drinking from straws, either that or they put them humanely to sleep at the end of their useful life.