Day 6 – Bay Tour of Isabela (Las Tintoreras)
Today we are on a half day tour of the bay in the morning. There is approx 16 of us on this site seeing boat. We are touring around the bay where we see small penguins, blue footed boobies, sea lions playing. We eventually land on a small island/land formation in the bay. It is very hot as it is almost noon and there is no shade and the volcanic rock is pitch black. There is a specific path you follow to tour around this formation.
Our first stop is to look for white tip sharks caught in a little bay before the tide comes in. They are hiding but we get to see a couple, not well enough for photos though. We do not see many sea turtles but we do see an amazing amount of marine iguanas. They blend right into the rock. At times we have to go off the path because they are spread out across the path. Near the end of the path we are lucky to watch the blue footed boobies hunt for food. The birds are a sight to see. They fly enmass and dive down into the water folding themselves up tight like a torpedo when they spot food and then come back out either flying or just sitting on the water. We also notice that these blue footed boobies have brighter feet than the ones on Santa Cruz. Not sure why though, except the coloring does have to do with the food they eat.
Once we are back on our boat the boat headed to a spot for some snorkelling. Very few people go snorkelling but we hang out for about a half hour on the boat at the site.
In the afternoon we spend the day wandering the beach. We do eventually come upon an injured albatross. It is being pushed around by the tide. A couple come over and we try to find someone to help the bird. It is not easy as the albatross is big and is on the defence. At one point some people come over to help, so I thought, but they are not nice to bird and I do not have the right words in spanish to say something and there are more of them than us. As much as I hate seeing them poke at the bird I do not feel in my gut it is a good idea to interject with Magpie standing here. Eventually Magpie and I walk back to town and tell a lady at a travel office who phons the Park attendants. We go back to the bird and wait some more. Neither Magpie and I or the couple have any luck. Eventually Magpie and I go for dinner and run into some Canadians we had met on the Altamar in Santa Cruz. After dinner Magpie goes to play frisbee with the adults, who also teach him how to throw better. It is a long day and evening. We also tell our rep about the albatross tonight and we pray. The good thing is an Albatross is a water bird.
Day 7 – A mix up
We are booked to tour the lava tunnels but now they tell me that it is predominantly all snorkelling and it is from a boat. I am frustrated because I have explained over and over that Magpie does not snorkel. Everything is fine as they reimbursed me the tour and we go kayaking instead for the morning. I cannot recommend this enough. It is great! We [Magpie and I] are in an open face sea kayak and our guide is in another. He leads us to where the animals normally are. The paddling is pre-dominantly in the bay but we are also in the open water. Magpie has a great experience and learns how to paddle properly. I so miss kayaking and we are so glad we decided to do this. Most of the time our guide has our water camera and is taking pictures for us. I happen to catch a sea turtle but Magpie misses it. On our return to shore we have a couple of sea lions and penguins playing with us.
After lunch we decide to go mountain biking to different parts of the island. Magpie finds it a little hard on the sand and with the heat but we do enjoy ourselves. Definitely do the biking in the morning or in the evening, after lunch is too hot. When we return our bikes, which we have rented from our local rep at Tropical Adventures, a truck comes by and they call for her. It turns out they have the albatross in their truck and are taking it for help. It took longer than I had hoped for but the bird is finally being properly looked after. It has a broken wing.
We meet our Canadian friends for dinner again to say good-bye as we are leaving in the early morning back to Guayaquil.
Day 8 – Saying Good Bye
We get up extremely early (4:30 am) before the sun has risen. We actually watch the sunrise on the dock waiting for the boat. It is a drizzle morning and one of the boat hands takes pity on Magpie and gives up his coat for Magpie. Magpie is just being obstinate and is tired.
Our boat ride back to Santa Cruz is a converted cabin cruiser. Magpie gets a seat right by the engine with lots of air and falls asleep on my lap. The boat is packed and you do not want to know about the toilet facilities. I am glad Magpie sleeps as there is one guy who gets nauseated on the ride. I still don’t think it is that bumpy but we have been travelling in the early morning and it usually is flatter unless the weather is stormy. I am glad for all my summers with my grandparents in the Kawarthas – lots of boating trips.
We arrive and are met by two reps from Galapagos Alternatives to take us to breakfast. After breakfast we get into a taxi and head to the Baltra Airport to head to Guayaquil.