Belize 2004, Part 2 – Underground Mayan Waterways: The Caves of Barton Creek

On our third day in Belize we took the Maya Mountain eco-tour to the Barton Creek Caves. After breakfast, this man showed up in his pick-up truck with his son. He was the tour guide.

Barton Creek local tour guide father and son

There was only room for one passenger in the front of the truck so the son and I hopped in the back. It was so much fun riding in the back of the truck. I hadn’t done that since growing up on the farm with Dad’s truck before they had seat belt laws.

My sister and I used to stand right on the back bumper while he drove down the road. One time I was in the back, sitting on the edge and when Dad took a turn I rolled right off the edge and tumbled into the field! Luckily it wasn’t pavement.

Riding in back of truck to Barton Creek

When we were driving through town and came to a stop sign, some dude just hopped in the back of the truck with us to hitch a ride for a while. Everybody knew each other around there it seemed. We also picked up a young german couple who joined the tour. This is the boyfriend above. I wonder if they’re still together.

Barton Creek Belize Canoe

When we got to Barton Creek, the tour man and his son unloaded two large canoes mounted above the truck. We paddled along the ancient Mayan waterway deep inside a mountain. There were ancient artifacts scattered about. I was blown away to see actual human skulls mounted on rocks where Mayans had performed human sacrifices. These were the victims.

Barton Creek Belize Cave Stelagtites

This is one of the largest caves in the world. There were beautiful stalactite formations everywhere which we needed industrial strength flashlights to see.

Barton Creek Belize Cave structures water

Although much of the cave had high ceilings with these beautiful rock flows and cathedral-like chambers, in some places the ceiling was so low you had to lie down in the canoe. This wouldn’t be so good for claustrophobics, or people afraid of bats!

Barton Creek Belize Canoeing tour guide

(Here’s our Barton Creek Caves tour guide with his canoes.)
Barton Creek Belize giant tree(On our way from the caves, Mom and I stopped to visit this enormous tree.)

All these photos were taken on the enormous brick of a 5 Megapixel digital Canon camera I bought in the year 2000. It cost $1,200! It was my first digital. Digital cameras were still in their commercial infancy back then. I bought a professional Canon EOS 20D SLR for the same amount in 2005 and didn’t upgrade until last month – nearly 10 years later. Canon rocks.

Watch [VIDEO] Belize Vacation Ten Year Anniversary

I also recorded most of these adventures on a huge clunky Digital-8 Cassette Video Camcorder which I carried around back then (I bought that at a pawn shop in 2003). You can see me wearing it in some of my pics. I have edited the footage into the compilation below. The soundtrack includes popular songs from 2004, which played a lot on the radio in Belize.

Belize Vacation Ten Year Anniversary Series

Belize 2004, Part 1 – Arrival in Central America
Belize 2004, Part 2 – Underground Mayan Waterways: The Caves of Barton Creek
Belize 2004, Part 3 – San Ignacio, Cayo District
Belize 2004, Part 4 – Maya Pyramids, Tikal, Guatemala
Belize 2004, Part 5 – The Coral Island of Caye Caulker
Belize 2004, Part 6 – Juni’s Sail & Snorkel Trips in Caye Caulker
Belize 2004, Part 7 – Lazy Lizard Bar & Grill at the Split, Caye Caulker

Next – Read Part 3:
San Ignacio, Cayo District

Originally from Sackville, New Brunswick. A longtime media producer, visual designer, marketing and communications specialist, Daman loves travel, technology and being a Dad.

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