From El Rama into the Wild

From El Rama into the Wild

This was the highway that leades eastward out of El Rama into the wild country. Shortly beyond this bridge, I'd be parking the Toyota 4Runner and taking more primitive means of transportation to my final destination: El Warí.

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the bridge

there are a few bridges in fort bend county, texas that i cringe upon driving over. did you drive over this one or drive through the creek?

Over and Under

To be fair ... I drove over on the way out (gotta show faith), and under on the way back.

the bridge

great story! did you have 4 wheel drive?

Jim - In Nicaragua

As "NicaNix" stated in the comment with his picture, he was driving a "Toyota 4-Runner" and all are 4WD - Hence the name. ____________________________________________________________________

toyota 4runner

my wife and i both own toyotas - thanks to american big 3 not building reliable cars - see consumer reports. we live in flat land texas (own a lot in sjds where we will retire). we see lots of 4runners here - never knew they were 4 wheel drive. what a waste - all that extra expense here on flat land. well just goes to show you - hence you can always learn something new. gee, do i feel like an idiot? no, not really. i try not to assume, did not want to go to the toyota dealership to ask, so i asked nicanix. thanks alan. ps, did rent a toyota echo once to get to sjds, had a hard time getting up a hill at pacific marlin sjds once. so will always rent and someday buy a 4wd. i like this web site because i already want to retire. and this keeps me connected.

4WD ... kinda

I tend to agree that the 4WD in the 4Runner is a bit of a waste. It isn't nearly as powerful as the setup in the Nissan Patrol sold here as well. I have found that in most areas of the country I visit, the regular 2WD position works pretty well. If you get yourself into a situation where you desperately need 4WD to get out of, the 4Runner may leave you stuck in the mud. I've had mixed results, that's why I mention it. All in all, the 4Runner is much more economical to purchase, maintain and operate than the Nissan Patrol, and is more comfortable ... but the Patrol definitely handles difficult terrain better. I've spent thousands of kilometers in both vehicles covering large portions of the country in them. Lots of stories and adventures there. By the way, the 4Runner will climb the roads at Pacific Marlin. I've done it pulling a trailer behind me. Just don't try to go up the driveway to the one lot across from the house Steve Snider rents out. It is nearly vertical. I've only managed to get up a few feet before the clutch wants to smoke, or my wife passes out from fright!


what i was talking about was 4 wheel drive here on flat land. its just not necessary. so all 4runners are 4wd?


In the USA, Toyota sells a 2wd version of the 4 Runner. I own a 4wd 4 Runner. It rides rough. Suspension is the same on the 2wd version. Can't imagine why anybody would settle for that rough a ride for only a 2wd. The 4 Runner, 2wd or 4wd, IS very reliable & does "look good".

I Think So

Jim, I think at least all the ones in Nicaragua are, but I've never actually climbed into very many others to verify that.

thanks blades and nicanix

glad to know my question was a valid one. my wife and i own 2wd toyotas. we think they are very reliable. but bc we live on flat land here in texas - we will wait till we retire there before owning a 4wd, thanks again, jimrichard ps, nicanix - did you drive up that steep driveway in pacific marlin? nice view? home? thanks

2WD 4Runners are sold in Canada

Not sure about the US... I guess these are for those who want to pretend they live in the wild while living in Toronto.

Steve - If your wife

passes out from fright when taking a hill in 4WD; what happens to her when you are swinging like a monkey traversing a little clothes line in the canopy tours?

Do you rush her to the hospital after each canopy tour or what? _____________________________________________________________________

Miskito is mistaken

Nope. She's pretty cool about the whole canopy adventure (as long as SHE isn't asked to do it herself). Now, I could tell a hilarious canopy tour story involving a lady friend of hers that came down to visit and we went to Mombacho to try it out (this was before the one in Managua). Miskito, either you must really enjoy ragging on yours truly or you haven't seen the extremely steep driveway in Pacific Marlin that I'm talking about (or maybe both?). One of my daughters attempted to climb the entire driveway in a 4 wheeler, and once up to the top, was too scared to get it back down again. I think they ended up shutting down the engine and used a combination of clutching and heavy braking to finally get back down again -- with a "never again" expression. And that's from my youngest who's ever bit as dare-devil as her papa.

i've seen the pacific marlin driveway straight up

is it 45 degrees? is there a house up there? what's the view like? and why didn't someone do a couple of switchbacks to get up there?

4 Wheel Drive

Yes, although it really wasn't necessary. The road I used all the way to where I parked was passable ... just very bumpy. The terrain I covered on horseback (technically, "muleback"), could only be covered by horseback or on foot. The gulies, ravines and streams would have made it difficult even for a dirt bike. A pastor friend of mine made the same trip, but in the rainy season, and after a flash flood, he had to swim across some very heavy water currents to cross some of the ravines that flooded.

I've seen the pacific marlin

I've seen the pacific marlin driveway straight up is it 45 degrees? is there a house up there? what's the view like? and why didn't someone do a couple of switchbacks to get up there?


NicaNix...What is a Nissan "Patrol"? Never heard of it. Must be pretty stout, though. I rented a Suziki Grand Vitara once thinking it was as bullish as a 4 Runner....No way! Clearance was way lower, & it just wasn't "built".

You're Right!

John...I own a 1979 Toyota Land Cruiser...the "real McCoy". At the time I bought it, I thought highly of myself for having the foresight to salvage this superior beast that eats Jeep Wranglers for lunch. I found out how smart I really am when I visited Costa Rica. It was unreal... more FJ-40's in an 80 km radius than in all the USA put together. I also saw the aforementioned "Toyota" Prado...huh? I did do a double-take. This "Patrol" sounds pretty strong. Is it anything like the Hyundai "Galloper"? I had never heard of that before Costa, either. Are there as many vintage ('70-'80) Toyota FJ-40 Land Cruisers in Nic as Costa? Once again, Central Americans show there intelligence by utilizing a practical vehicle which is all but forgotten here in the USA. Necessity is the "mother of invention".


I think there are right many ot them in Costa Rica = parts. But, I really don't know!


Now, any "Hummer" would be a good choice.

I know this guy that drives a "Hummer" from Guatemala to Puerto Cabezas all the time and never has any problems. ____________________________________________________________________


Thank God this site is back "up".

like the proverebial elephant

THE HUMMER CAN PARK ANYWHERE THAT IT WANTS. ____________________________________________________________________


Yeah!!! You can park it anywhere as long as it's Bagdad, Mosul, or Kirkuk. It's almost funny watching the metamorphosis of the Hummer from a "war machine" into a "soccer mom car" with their latest version (H3?). As Miskito Alan says you can get from anywhere to Puerto Cabezas in a Hummer. But, now that Pat Robertson has "assassinated" Chavez, you might die from being stranded in the middle of nowhere because you ran out of gas due to being cut-off by Venzuela. Oh...wait a minute, that would be in the USA, not Nic...right? Don't worry, I'll come by & save you in my technologically inferior & outdated 1978 Toyota Land Cruiser.