Tuesday, May 29, 2007

May 27, 2007 - Santa Cruz, Galapagos

A school of rays drifting through the anchorage

Last night we met some other cruisers on the water taxi back to the anchorage. They asked us which boat we were on, and then asked us if we were chartering. The implication of course is that we couldn't possibly be here on our own boat. But the thing is, there is no charter fleet in the Galapagos. And if there are any charter boats on mainland Ecuador or the Pacific coast of Panama, they certainly wouldn't permitted to be taken over five hundred miles offshore. Yet, because we are under 50, it is an easier assumption that we are chartering than here on our own boat. Perhaps if we had a few kids in tow and Sten had a scraggly beard we'd look the part.

Our excursion for today was to hike out to Las Grietas, a fjord of sorts where fresh water filters through lava fissures into a ravine where it mixes with saltwater. The walls of the gorge are made of scalable rocks. The local kids were having a great time scrambling up them to jump off of rocks that jutted out over the water at heights of 15 feet and 25 feet up, and then all the way at the top, which must have been 45 feet up. After watching for a bit and picking out their climbing route, I took a few jumps too. It was good fun, and took me back to rock jumping in a ravine near home with high school friends.

The trail out to Las Grietas is made up of lava rocks. Santa Cruz is not as old as San Cristobal nor is it as young as Isabella. The lava stone isn't quite as sharp as it would be on a younger island. The trail took us by salt mines where the locals make salt for processing fish. The mines look like a pink and purple patchwork quilt.

No comments: