Dear Family and Friends,
After my brother, Norman, and his wife, Nancy, left to go back to Texas we went with Audrey and Jim to the coast to go whale watching. Although we have lived here a long time, and been to the coast many times, this is one trip we have not done before.
It was an all day drive in a tourist van to reach Puerto Lopez. We were exhausted from the trip and walked on the beach before having dinner. We went to bed early because we had a full day ahead of us.
The next morning we were taken to the pier. From here we were loaded on a boat to begin our adventure.
While waiting for our turn to board the boat, I noticed this fishing boat in the water. Looking at the pelicans, they most likely had a successful fishing trip.
We started our trip away from land and about 45 minutes later we were in the middle of the humpback whales. Our guide did a good job of spotting them and the boat driver did a good job of staying with them. The photographer (me) did a hit and miss job of capturing them.
Oops...almost had that one.
Wow! Another tail. I got better though and when we returned on our way back to shore I got some nice pictures.
This is another tourist boat, very much like the one we were on, out enjoying the whales.
Here is another whale shot.
We continued on to Isla Plata (Silver Island) also known as the poor man's Galapagos. We were excited to go because we heard that you can see Blue Footed Boobies there. We spotted these two pelicans on a buoy as we approached the island.
We enjoyed watching the green sea turtles. Our guide threw a little food out for them and they surfaced so we got a real good view of them.
We got off the boat and went on to the island. No people live on the island. It is protected and the nature is phenomenal. Here is a little Long Tailed Mocking Bird. They were very friendly and because they are protected they have no fear of humans.
Chuck, Audrey and I hiked to the top of the island. Since it was only a little over a week since my thyroid surgery and it was 90+ degrees, I kept saying to Chuck I could never have done this before the surgery. The rest of the hikers continued on for another mile of hiking, but I chose to rest in the shade at the top of the island.
I am glad I stayed there because the Blue Footed Boobies came to me. I was entertained for about an hour by them while I waited for my fellow hikers to return.
Here is a male, stomping his feet, trying to catch the attention of his female partner.
They came right up to my feet and stayed there the whole time. They were not one bit frightened by me. The big bird on the right is the female. They are larger than the males. Also, the guide said to notice their pupils. Females have larger pupils than the males.
They were so close that I could get a close up photo of their feet.
The hikers finally returned and we made our way back down the island to the shelter where we could get back on our boat. Here is Audrey and Liz, another tourist, resting in the shade while waiting their turn to get back on the boat.
Another group of tourists waiting to get on their boat.
Here is a tuna boat that was anchored off the island.
Another photo of the Long Tailed Mocking Bird.
After leaving the island, our boat stopped so we could snorkel. Here is a picture of a near by boat and the passengers getting ready to snorkel.
I knew I could not go in the water because my scar was still healing. Even so I was treated to some beautiful fish. Here is a snorkeler from our boat admiring these Angel fish.
They look distorted because of the water, but they were so brilliant in color.
After snorkeling, we headed back to Puerto Lopez, stopping to view the whales again. I am so glad we had a second chance. This time I was lucky to be able to capture the whales breaching the water.
The trip was fantastic.....a complete success.
It was an all day adventure.
Here is a shot from the pier of Puerto Lopez.
The next morning we started our long drive home. We reached Cuenca about 7pm. We were in bed asleep before 9pm. Tired but feeling very happy.
On the next post I will share some Caja pictures I made when Chuck and I took the bus to Guayaquil about a month ago.