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Thread: Anyone Been To Somoto Canyon?

  1. #1
    TRN's fiesty redhead catahoula fan's Avatar
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    Default Anyone Been To Somoto Canyon?

    I was talking with a friend and there might be a trip in the works...just wondering if anyone had any real life experience with the place...
    "Patience is a virtue, but persistence to the point of success is a blessing."

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    Pinolero De Cepa!! FisherCigarman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone Been To Somoto Canyon?

    one word!! awesome!! before there were no houses were to stay,but now places were to spend the night abound,since Nicaragua made it an official turistic destination.
    however... right now it's literally offlimits,due to heavy rains and ALL the rivers are swollen,best bet is in early summer,as early as Feb.


    Quote Originally Posted by catahoula fan View Post
    I was talking with a friend and there might be a trip in the works...just wondering if anyone had any real life experience with the place...

  3. #3

    Default Re: Anyone Been To Somoto Canyon?

    I made the trip a few years ago. You can stay in Somoto and travel to the canyon from there. I went in August and the river was low, so I was able to drive up to the look out points (need a 4X4 to make it up there) steep and scary sometimes. They had just fixed the road, as before you could only get up the on mules. Look at pictures in my FB page (trip to Northern Nicaragua). Also visited Reserva Miraflor, stayed at Neblinas del Bosque (Highly recommended). We also went to Jinotega via the Road to La Concordia, they were working on paving that road at the time, I believe it might be finished by now. In Jinotega we visited Finca Java on the south end of Lake Apanas (Beautiful place). While in Esteli we visited Phil (a guy from the other nica blog who was building domes in Reserva El Tisey).

    It was a beautiful trip overall. I had only seen the beauty in the Pacific. Had never been to that part of the country.

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    Pinolero De Cepa!! FisherCigarman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone Been To Somoto Canyon?

    Paisa, u need to go to Somoto in the summer when the water in the canyon is crystal clear man, it's awesome. The roads are now fixed up a little, and the road to Apanas is 95% completed,and now they are paving the remaining 35 KM, from San Gabriel to Asturias, the road from Pantasma to Pueblo Nuevo it's also getting done looks awesome,I just made the trip to Apanas 4 weeks ago.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rivense67 View Post
    I made the trip a few years ago. You can stay in Somoto and travel to the canyon from there. I went in August and the river was low, so I was able to drive up to the look out points (need a 4X4 to make it up there) steep and scary sometimes. They had just fixed the road, as before you could only get up the on mules.

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    Default Re: Anyone Been To Somoto Canyon?

    Thanks guys for the great info!!! I'm gonna put it on my calendar and plan a trip for sure, me and a few friends while Roger watches the farm.

    Now....when is the best time to visit San Juan River? Roger wants to make a trip, but we were discussing skeeters last night, so just weren't sure about the timing. Anyone got any real life experiences down in that part of the country?
    "Patience is a virtue, but persistence to the point of success is a blessing."

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    Viejo del Foro Just Plain John Wayne's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone Been To Somoto Canyon?

    Quote Originally Posted by catahoula fan View Post
    Thanks guys for the great info!!! I'm gonna put it on my calendar and plan a trip for sure, me and a few friends while Roger watches the farm.

    Now....when is the best time to visit San Juan River? Roger wants to make a trip, but we were discussing skeeters last night, so just weren't sure about the timing. Anyone got any real life experiences down in that part of the country?
    I have made two trips entering the river at Greytown to San Carlos and then from I think it was from Granada, No it was a little town further down that I can't remember the name right now going across the lake and then to San Carlos and the river to the sea again.

    There are a few skeeters to put it lightly. Got hung on a rock for the night first time going up the river near El Castillio, Basturds made me cry because I was not prepaired for them....
    To be called a "Has Been" I must surmise, is much Greater than to be called a "Nevah Been"... JW...



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    Default Re: Anyone Been To Somoto Canyon?

    Basturds made me cry because I was not prepaired for them....
    A tough ol' bird like you, cryin'??? I don't believe it!
    "Patience is a virtue, but persistence to the point of success is a blessing."

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    House SOB Little Corn Tom's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone Been To Somoto Canyon?

    Went fishing there for a few days.

    Only was on the river for a short time one night.

    Holy Christ!

    Those stories about Florida Keys mosquitoes were nothing compared to this place.

    They were HUGE and thick and everywhere.

    But only at night.
    Life's different here ... It's a whole 'nother pace.

  9. #9
    Viejo del Foro Just Plain John Wayne's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone Been To Somoto Canyon?

    Only at Night... I laugh about it now, but it was miserable then...

    Funny thing though, you only have a short mid day window to dry anything ya wash on the river...
    To be called a "Has Been" I must surmise, is much Greater than to be called a "Nevah Been"... JW...



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    Default Re: Anyone Been To Somoto Canyon?

    Would like to look at Rivense67 pictures on FB. Anyone know how listed on FB? Thanks

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Anyone Been To Somoto Canyon?

    Would like to look at Rivense67 pictures on FB. Anyone know how listed on FB? Thanks
    http://www.facebook.com/jose.d.gallegos.3
    "Patience is a virtue, but persistence to the point of success is a blessing."

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    Active TRN Member Dolly's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone Been To Somoto Canyon?

    I did the entire river, both ways, for a week at the end of Feb. several years ago. Skeeters were bad when trecking through the jungle around Greytown day or nite. On open land next to the river they were tolerable with some spray. I don't remember them being really bad anywhere but on the jungle treck around Greytown. I was on a short treck inside the biosphere and I don't remember them being that bad there. On the boat they were no problem. The trip is worth a few bites.
    It's all part of the adventure!!

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    Viejo del Foro el duende grande's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone Been To Somoto Canyon?

    Quote Originally Posted by catahoula fan View Post
    I was talking with a friend and there might be a trip in the works...just wondering if anyone had any real life experience with the place...
    I`ve posted a few writeups on the``other site``. do a search there and you will get some info. I was there is Dec with a walking stick to help me cross the river, which is vastly preferable than hopping from slippery rock to slippery rock. Water level was low, but it was amazing to see how the river bed had been scored out during the previous rains. you have to cross the river to do anything.

    Last trip they had a new thing to park at a house downhill from the entrance station. Don`t fall for this one unless you have 4wd to get back out.

    tour guides are available at Hotel Panamericano or at the entrance station. It is a hiking trip with 2 options--walk up the canyon, probably 1km or so to the mouth of the canyon, or walk up the dirt road to a series of 3 constructed look outs. I`d guess this would be about 2 or 3 km.

    the gonzo trip is to go with a guide and insert at the top end of the canyon and walk, climb, crawl, wade, and swim to the bottom. Haven`t done this one--you had better be in shape!

    Canyon trip is very much dependent on rains and water level--

  14. #14

    Default Re: Anyone Been To Somoto Canyon?

    I just went yesterday, beautiful place.

    If your in Somoto you can take the el espino bus for 8 cords and tell the driver the let you off at the park entrance. From the park entrance we walked something like 20 or 25 minutes to the tourist shack. Yesterday, there was a lady giving a speach the the locals about the dangers of mosquitos. Entrance was 2 dollars for me and 20 cords for my nice friend.

    Crossing the river was easy, although I would recommend bringing some sandals, its easy to slip on the rocks and cut your feet.

    We walked further, past cows and horses, and found a man who brough us up the river and his boat for 45 cords each. Occasionally we were required to beach the boat and walk over rocks to the next pool where we could take the next boat. We went as far as the boat could go.

    My nica friend was not accustomed to walking long distances for pleasure, and she was having a tough time, so we took some time and swam in one of the shallow pools before walking back to the road and catching a taxi back for 20 cords each.

    I plan on going again in the near future and attempting the 6 hour hike.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Anyone Been To Somoto Canyon?

    Had a great time there about a week ago. Did the largo tour for 6 hours. I would recommend wearing shoes that you do not mind getting wet. Aside from the beautiful scenery, jumping from the 20 meter cliff was the highlight for me.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  16. #16

    Default Re: Anyone Been To Somoto Canyon?

    Quote Originally Posted by Corre con perros View Post
    jumping from the 20 meter cliff was the highlight for me.
    Beautiful place. I'd be up for some floating, not sure about the jumping tho.

  17. #17
    Viejo del Foro el duende grande's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone Been To Somoto Canyon?

    Jan 2014 update. I went for a day trip this week to walk part of the ridge road to continue my study of some native plants. I wasn`t planning to hire a guide because I have been there before but I got to talking to a guide and the entrance, Orbil, and he seemed real sharp do I went for it. He was very knowledgeable. we went to mirador 1 and then back down to the river by an obscure but passable foot trail, making a nice loop trip.

    With time, I can see a shaking out with ``community based tourism`` Some guides are learning their trade and taking market share from the ``local guy needs a buck`` amateurs. This is good.

    The infrastructure is moving on. At the entrace are guides, a country restaurant, and some rustic rental cabins. Part of the road below the ranger station has been cemented and is probably passable by any car, so one can go down to the finca by the river for parking. No smell of burning rubber on the rocks this time! On the way to the parking finca is another place with rental cabins named San Rafael. It looks midrange or better and is probably worth checking out.

    The water level was low enough to walk accross on dry rocks, although I take a walking stick to make it easier. Chatting with the guide I found out that since I had been there they had created a camping ground at Mirador 2 with outhouses, etc. One possibility for a future trip is to have him pack in stuff on a mule and we will walk in. I am not comfortable on a horse on the steep rocky road, although that is also an option. He says the campground is almost always empty. I think I would have to do some dickering and planning to have a nice trip. its a dry camp, and I would have schedule the burro transport to sort my hours. Backpacking is unknown here. people don`t have the equipment and most locals would get bored in camp without radios, cel phones, beer, etc. I believe there is also camping on private property at mirador 3. Motor vehicles are not allowed on the river or ridge road.

    Also, Nic cel phones don`t work in the canyon. the guide had a locally obtained one that works on a Honduran signal.

    If you haven``t been there, this is fairly hot/dry country. january would be the perfect month, or the begiining or end of the rainy season.
    Last edited by el duende grande; 01-07-2014 at 12:01 PM.

  18. #18

    Default Re: Anyone Been To Somoto Canyon?

    Quote Originally Posted by catahoula fan View Post
    I was talking with a friend and there might be a trip in the works...just wondering if anyone had any real life experience with the place...
    If you (or anyone) head up that way, please stop by. We're on the Pan Am a few miles south of Somoto and have a spare bedroom. Ask for the Gringo's house, everyone in Condega knows us.

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