Author: Kathleen Zuelsdorff (---.dsl.airstreamcomm.net)
Date: 04-19-07 16:35
We did some hiking when my husband and I were there last week. We hiked up the road to the top of Mt. REsaca and then down to Playa Resaca . On the road near the mountain top we saw a large 2-3 foot lizard that looked like the iguanas I've seen in Bonaire and there were very cool LARGE turtle tracks in several places on the beach.
We also drove out past the cemetery a ways and did the hike out to Playa Brava - more turtle tracks and some great views of Cayo Norte. Late another afternoon, we went to Zoni, went west/north along the beach and scrambled around the point on the rocks to get to a small beach named Tortuga. We then scrambled/ambled back to our car as the sun was setting - the low lighting, backlit clouds and surf made it one of my favorite times of the week.
Other than a couple of body surfers at Playa Brava, we had the beaches and trails all to ourselves, so there's plenty of opportunity to get away from the crowds at Flamenco during the day. Also, campfires and flashlights are not allowed on these remote turtle nesting beaches because the lights can disturb the turtles.
Finally, in addition to the possibility of forest fires, the island "forest" is not particularly conducive to hiking, unless you're on a well-worn path. It's thick, dense, tangled with vines in many places and filled with thorny shrubs and trees. It would not be pleasant to make your way through with a backpack on. I think Richard's right, you should probably save the backpacking trip for a more suitable environment.