October 26, 2008
Our first tortioses!
San Cristobal, Galapagos
We drove for almost an hour this morning to get to Galapaguero where we got to view our first giant tortoises! They are really incredible. Slow as you can imagine, but also really fascinating looking. I cannot believe that they are able to get themselves around, albeit slow, but they get around nonetheless. There were also some young tortoises in the breeding area, as young as a few months old, all the way until several years old. On the way back, we stopped at VOLCANO and hiked to the rim. There is a lake at the top of the volcano, the only fresh water source on the island. We hiked all the way around the rim, giving the clouds time to lift, and could see all the way to the other end of the island!
When we got back to the hotel we were told that unfortunately, we would not be able to have shrimp for lunch, but instead got lobster for lunch! What a nice treat to come home to!
In the afternoon, we loaded up in our kayaks, and set off along the shore. My mom and I were in the same kayak, which was a little tough for us, but we did manage after a few minutes of “getting used to each other” in the kayak. We stayed pretty close to shore, but the waves still made me a little nervous! I know it is safe, but I have never shared a kayak with someone. It is hard enough to deal with a tippy kayak on my own, but to deal with someone else’s weight in the boat threw me off a little! We kayaked all the way around the point, where the water got even trickier, and then into a nice quiet cove below Frigate Hill, where we were yesterday. We paddled along with the sea lions, saw a ton of different crab along the shore, blue-footed boobies, nazca boobies, tropical birds, and BIRDS. Then we stopped along the way back and got to snorkel! I was a little freaked out at first, but once I relaxed I was able to swim out further from shore. Then a small sea lion came and started playing with us! It would swim right up to my face, then dive under me and blow bubbles in my face. Then, I saw a turtle swim right underneath me! I tried to follow it, but quickly lost it. When we were about to head back to shore, Fabricio spotted a manta ray! I followed it around for a while, but it was a little creepy. We got back into our kayaks and paddled back to shore.