14-Aug-2003 -- From maps, I'd surmised that this confluence lay very close to the Carreterra del Norte (Highway of the North), the main route between Tegucigalpa and San Pedro Sula. I planned to simply take a bus along this route and have the driver drop me off when we were near. It didn't work so easily.
As I sat in the very back row of the bus, I watched the distance on my GPS fall. With ten kilometers between me and the confluence, I squeezed my way to the front of the bus and explained that I wanted to be dropped off shortly. I showed the driver and his assistant my GPS and explained that I wanted to stop when the distance read just a few hundred meters. The assistant took my GPS in his hand and counted down the distance to the driver. He thought it was a great toy and compared the speedometer on my GPS to that of the bus.
The arrow on the GPS indicated the confluence lay to the west, on our left. I felt confident that the road would continue to wind closer and closer. The mountain road descended into a valley and in front of the bus was the longest, straightest section of highway I've ever seen in Central America. The driver pointed and told me that the road didn't go in the direction my GPS pointed. On this highway, the closest I got to the confluence was roughly seven kilometers. I didn't understand. My maps clearly showed this highway passing almost directly on top of the confluence.
I stayed on the bus to San Pedro Sula. I would regroup and make a new attempt tomorrow.
In the morning I took a bus back south on the Carreterra del Norte. I had the driver drop me at a side road with a bus stop. It appears that this side road used to be the main highway, but sometime in the past the long straight section was constructed.
I boarded a local bus and we bounced up the steep winding mountain road, closer to the confluence. People got on and off as we passed several small communties. When I disembarked, my GPS told me I was about 300 meters from the confluence. On the north side of the road was a small store and behind it, several homes. To the south and the direction of the confluence, a small gravel road ducked under two large parallel pipelines.
The gravel road curved to the left, and then back to the right, climbing a steep hill. A few houses sat among the fields of corn surrounding the road. I came to a small path that looked to lead in the direction of the confluence. A woman walked by, and so that I didn't seem suspicious, I asked her if it were alright if I took some photographs of the fields. She said I could and I followed her partway down the small path.
The path went into a field of not-yet-mature coffee plants. I walked in among the plants and to the edge of the field. Someone had recently used a machete to clear the immediate area of tall foliage. The confluence was located in the clearing, almost directly over a barbed-wire fence separating this coffee field from the neighboring corn field. A small boy sat about 50 meters south and is partly visible in the corresponding photo.
I was suprised to see coffee growing as such a relatively low elevation. On the way out, I talked to a man who said he worked in the field. He told me the pipeline carried water from nearby Lake Yojoa to supply the cities.
I caught a bus back to the main highway and then flagged another bus to return to Tegucigalpa.