Checking out the Great Barrier Reef!

Trip Start Jun 24, 2010
Trip End Jul 11, 2010

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Great Barrier Reef

Flag of Australia  , Queensland,
Wednesday, July 7, 2010

At 8AM we left the Town of 1770 on a high-speed catermaran headed for the southern portion of the Great Barrier Reef (one of the seven natural wonders of the world).  We were headed for an island called Lady Musgrave, which is surrounded by 3000 acres of turquoise water and colorful coral.   The ride out to the reef was quite rough, with lots of waves.   There were about 100 people on the boat, and a large portion of them were getting seasick.   Unfortunatley, Cody was one of them.  He said he felt sicker than he'd ever been before.   Fortunately, the captain took him under his wing and did his best to help control the symptoms, dowsing with cold water, etc. He also gave us some tips for next time, including a suggestion about putting an earplug in one ear before leaving on the boat.  When we got to the island, Cody and Maddy and I took a nature tour, and he soon felt better.  Meanwhile Tyler snorkeled with some of the other passengers and Mike went diving.   The island tour was actually pretty interesting, we learned that there are > 100,000 birds there at certain times of the year, and saw the island was full of nests. It also had trees that turn into sponges when they die, and decompose rapidly.  It was a really beautiful place, while there we saw white sand beaches, sea turtles, turqoise water, and of course lots of fish and birds. Later in the day I went on an introductory dive because it had been about 3 years since my last dive, and that was pretty fun and quite helpful.  Also went on a semi-submarine tour and saw lots of interesting creatures.  Mike enjoyed his two dives as well, he got up pretty close to a 6' White-tipped Reef shark, and he also saw a large Bull Ray (similar to a manta ray but smaller-- about 5' or 6' across) as well as a blue-spotted stingray, a couple other rays, lots of fish, and a loggerhead turtle.  All in all it was a really action-filled and yet tiring day.  The star of the trip was Maddy, she was in a great mood all day and charmed nearly everyone on the boat... giggling and laughing and putting on a big show nonstop.  A lot of the passengers wanted to get pictures taken with her and took turns getting their phptos with her.  One guy even said "can i get picture with most beautiful baby in world". It was funny to watch Maddy react to all the fame, she was really aware of it and making the most of the situation and enjoying the attention. They sure do like kids around here!
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