S. Plaza Island

Trip Start Apr 03, 2008
Trip End Apr 27, 2008

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Flag of Ecuador  , Galapagos Islands,
Sunday, April 20, 2008

During the night we had traveled to S. Plaza Island off of Santa Cruz Island.  We got up early; 5:40, to hit the island before the 4 other boats disembarked.  The island was arid and very small.  Wonderful cliffs into the ocean for bird watching also provided a cool breeze.  There were many iguanas but this particular hike was frustrating for a handful of us.  We covered 1 km. in 2.5 hours and could see the whole island the whole time - no trees blocking our view.  We were not allowed to leave our guide and he patiently waited for everyone to get all their pictures.

After that the ship set off for Bartolome Island in Sullivan Bay of Santiago.  I was bored and annoyed so I almost didn't go snorkeling, but at the last minute realized I didn't have anything better to do so went.  We had some good encounters with penguins, fish and sharks.  Jeff got some amazing underwater shark and penguin video.  Then we took the zodiacs around to a peak we could summit.  It was an easy climb - about 400 ft. - on trails and stairs over a barren Mars-scape.  All of us went and we kept at the hike slow and steady and were rewarded with marvelous views.  After taking a handful of pictures I decide the hike was too good to stand around bored, so Tommy let me run the trail alone.  I was grateful for the chance to stretch my legs even though it might have looked like I was trying to get attention.  The amazing thing about this landscape was the large number of parasite volcanoes and the distinct flow of lava with pyroclastic chunks scattered all around.

Dinner was terrific - vegetarian lasagna, garlic bread and fresh green beans!  Lots of people were glad to not have meat and I think our new chef is terrific.

Ben's talk was on migrating birds.  After that Jeff and I called home and they had snow!  Unbelievable.  I feel bad for my folks for the lasting cold.  Everything seems to be going alright at home.  I'm so relieved the kids are coping well.  One week and we'll be with them again!
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