16-Nov-2008 -- We arrived at Villa Sandino, approximately 5km north of confluence 12N 85W for a late breakfast at 08:30 before taking the first choice dirt road south, attempting to approach the confluence from the north-east. That got us within 2km of the confluence. This was not as close as we had expected to get, and with some thickly vegetated steep hills between us and the confluence, coupled with a local farmers advice, we decided to back-track and attempt to gain access from the north-west using another dirt track out of Villa Sandino. This proved a much easier drive and also more successful, enabling us to park the car only 860m southwest of the confluence. It was then an easy walk to the site by following fencelines and crossing one stream. We reached the confluence just after 11:00.
12N 85W is located on the northeast slope of a hill, in an area where the land is primarily used to run cattle. The confluence occurs in a grassy paddock about 100m uphill of a small farmhouse (see photo of View West from 12N 85W). It is an area of undulose terrain with poorly draining, locally waterlogged black soil, long broadleafed grass and some well spaced trees.
Just as mountaineers say that the most dangerous part of climbing a mountain is the descent; so it was with us. Navigation was neglected on the return to the car, such that we ended up jumping across streams and pushing our way through previously unvisited scrub. Eventally doubts were aired about the direction of travel and the GPS tracking mode was consulted for arbitration - it sent us to a point on the vehicles access track over a kilometre from the parked car and from there things got back on track.