Saturday, 8 October 2011

what we've been up to pt. 1

Let me take you through a crash course of what we've been up to....

In no particular order:


Ann Marie and I went on an adventure to Ritidian Beach. This is the most northern tip of the Island and is a secluded are. The isolation offers a spectacular view of the true beauty of Guam. The beach is a long stretch of white powder sand and crystal clear waters. The drive to Ritidian is through part of the most rural area of Guam. It is a paved road that runs, for a stretch, along the perimeter of Andersen AFB. However, the road has not been kept up so watch out for potholes. When you arrive at the beach you won't be able to see it at first, walk down one of the trails between the trees and tall grass to take in the breath taking views.

The beach was pretty much abandoned. As you walk south down the water line you round a bend where the remainder of the island becomes visible. (See above picture) The cliffs sore just 40 meters from the water line.

The cliffs provide numerous caves and stalagmites to explore and examine. Exposed coral litters the beach. And you realize, it's just you, the waves, and God enjoying his beautiful creation.

Well, you're almost alone. The boys were at work and Ann Marie and I were up for an adventure. As we walked along the beach we came across a few local critters enjoying an afternoon snack from the coconut. Look close and you can see the pinchers of a slightly larger crab under the coconut. After we tried to uncover it, he decided to come after us. We picked up our pace a bit and made it home with all our toes.


Tucked in the ravine of the Fonte River is the old Fonte Dam. It was originally constructed under the orders of President Taft in 1910 to provide water to the village of Hagatna. A picturesque spill way overflows against imported red brick amongst a back drop of lush wild jungle. Imagine how strange it must seem to be trekking through natural jungle growth until suddenly a vast man made structure appears before you in the midst of what seems a completely uncivilized area. 

Nate, Ann Marie, Ryan and I headed south on our adventure on Saturday morning. We were prepared for whatever we may encounter. Cameras- check. Hiking/water shoes- check. Snacks- check. Machete- check. Cell phone (in case of emergency)- check. Nothing was coming between us and our destination. 

The boys were on a mission and Ann Marie and I were enjoying our stroll through the jungle. We took advantage of all the photo ops. Examined the unusual plants and hurried by the elaborately spun spider webs. As you can see hiking her is a group effort. It is nearly impossible to make it down the slick rocks. Just know that everyone in your group will bust their bootie at some point during the journey. 

With beautiful blue skies above us and green grass leading us to the trail head we could not have asked for anything better. We reached the trail marker (see above) and turned left into the jungle. The grass quickly gave way to dirt. The dirt quickly began to show signs of a near stream or river. Before long we gave up jumping puddles and began to stomp right through them. 

The dam did not disappoint. It was elaborately constructed in beautiful red brick. (You don't see brick here. Everything is rebar and concrete.) The water was cool. Remarkably cool actually. It seemed more like a rive in NC than the warm water we usually find on our tropical island. Needless to saw, we still managed to make it into the water. It wasn't the most graceful climb to arrive at the base of the dam. But it did offer a chance to wash off our feet and get a good laugh. 

It wasn't long till we decided to explore up the mountain on the opposite side of the river. The journey to the top wasn't any longer than half a mile, but it covered some significant vertical distance. Once we reached the top the view made it worth the effort. The breeze cooled us off, the sun was hidden behind some non-threatening clouds, and we examined our next option for adventure. With in minutes of our arrival the peaceful silence was broken by the hum, then the roar of the arriving rain. 

No problem, we aren't going to melt. But, in the sudden down pour my cell phone (in case of emergency) learned that it can not swim, Ryan slid down the red clay hill on his butt, the four of us became SOAKED, we made it back across the river and headed back up the trail and we began to loose shoes that became stuck in the mud. Sunscreen was running down our faces, everything we had with us was water logged, and all 4 of us looked like drown rats. 

Bonus: After the hike, we didn't need showers.... off to the next adventure! Mt. Lam Lam sno cones.... here we come. 


Sometimes you need a great place to eat, out of town. On the south side of the Island, past Big Navy and up Rt 2, is a restaurant that sits just on the edge of a marina. If you ever make it to Guam, with or with out us, you have to head there for their pancakes. $3 will get you the most enormously gigantic pancake you will ever see. Choose from plain, banana, or blueberry. No matter your choice it will be delicious.  

Between the 6 of us we had 4 pancakes this size. I'm pretty confident we could have all eaten off one. They also serve one of the best burgers on island. The special includes the catch of the day served almost any way you can imagine. Even for breakfast you can have the catch with your eggs and toast. Just ask Ryan. He will tell you it was delicious. 

After breakfast, Ryan, Nate, Ann Marie and myself head towards Big Navy. Per the girls request we made a few pit stops along the way to capture some beautiful sights along our journey. More on that next time.... from our rock in the middle of the pacific. 

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