Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Galapagos Day 5: Fernandina Island, Punta Espinoza and Isabela Island, Punta Vicente Roca

Our last full day on the ship started off with a three hour long hike around Fernandina Island. This was the first day that it was truly sweltering, and that coupled with the black lava reflecting everything made for an intense hike. But it was certainly worth it to be able to spend so much time on Fernandina.
This pile of marine iguanas greeted us upon our arrival. Here is a video of just how gross these creatures are- they are constantly blowing salt water out of their noses, and defecating in runny yellow rivers all over the rocks and one another. Still, I found their smug faces endearing, despite all the body fluids they were excreting.

See what I mean? When they go balancing lava lizards on their heads and smirking at you, it's all over.

That was a very, very deep crack. I don't know that it was entirely smart for me to hang into it like that.
This is my favorite shot of Fernandina.
Whoops, nearly stepped on a little friend there. They just blended in so well.
Remains of a whale that had been beached many years ago.

After the hike and lunch, we headed out for one last snorkeling trip off of Isabela Island, in Punta Vicente Roca.
This snorkeling excursion was all sea turtles, all the time. When I took this picture there were 3 more floating around me.
The water conditions weren't the best, but it was worth it to get to swim in a group of sea turtles. Although I have to admit, their eyes creeped me out a bit.
This guy got so close to me, I had to back up so I didn't touch him.
Here's another one, right under me.
He's probably pooping in my face here, while I'm having a magical sea turtle moment.
There were a few boobies, although nothing like what we experienced on Rabida.
This picture makes me smile. I imagine a cheesy little tune playing in its head as it shoots through the water.
We only encountered one sea lion, but he was all up on us for a while.
This is right after he put his face up to my goggles and was swirling around me in tight circles.
Done with our last snorkeling trip, with the mask marks to prove it.
 We headed back to the ship to watch the sunset, since it was our last night. It started off pretty good..
and then ended even better. We had a half day left on Santa Cruz island the next day, and we were very sad to see our time on the ship coming to an end. Mostly I wanted someone to continue to make my bed and cook for me :)


  1. !!! Seeing a sea turtle in the wild is at the top of my list! Now i have to go to the galapagos. I am so jealous of this trip!

  2. Yes, you do have to go to the Galapagos! It wasn't even on my "I need to see this before I croak" list, but I'm so, so glad we went. It was one of the best experiences (not just travel, but in general) of my life. Just... totally wild and beautiful and it seems like another world.