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Ryan’s Take On Tortuga Bay

Posted: Sun, Jul 24, 2016


Location: Tortuga Bay
Author: Ryan D.

The intense equatorial sun was already beginning to be shrouded by a wall of gray clouds as we left our hotel for Tortuga Bay at an abnormally late hour of 10:30 that morning. The morning walk to the beach commenced in the streets of Puerto Ayora, which soon receded into paths and roads that winded through the nature of the island. We mounted the stairs and followed the seemingly endless path that we had cleaned the preceding morning.
After an hour that allotted the walk to the bay, the stones beneath our feet gave way to white sand and the landscape of trees and cacti surrounding us tightly along the enormously long path yielded to the vista of a sweeping bay constituted of nothing but impeccably white sand and amazingly blue water, rivaling the most impressive and renowned beaches in the world. Without hesitation, we abandoned our belongings in the soft folds of the beach, and surrendered to the lure of the sapphire-colored sea. Though the watery expanse appeared azure from afar, we could tell that the waves were as clear as glass as soon as we splashed into them. As if heeding some inaudible cue, the suns rays began to free their golden fingers from the captivity of the clouds that had been holding them back since morning. In another welcomed surprise, we were able to once again plunge into childhood with inflated floaties, namely a doughnut and a pretzel. After a few hours on the sand or in the waves and following a beach picnic lunch, we began our migration to the other end of Tortuga Bay to a place where tidal pools, which were perfectly designed for snorkeling, were formed. These superbly clear pools formed between the beach and volcanic rock that had become a de facto reef.
Furthermore, these rocks served as the only barrier between the beach and the treacherous ocean, rife with strong rip currents, and they acted as the guards ensuring our security during our time snorkeling. With the same anticipation and eagerness, we collected our masks and snorkels to begin immediately. The clarity of the pools made the water deceptively deep, but that only facilitated snorkeling. Almost instantaneously, we began finding fish of many colors and species along the rocks, which proved to be a prime habitat for many types of creatures, including crabs and fish. In only what seemed to be a few moments, a shark was spotted in the pool.
At about a meter long, he was identified as a black-tipped reef shark, a very docile and relatively friendly species of shark, an animal often subject to popular misconception. A few more were spotted just outside the pools and soon after, a few just farther off the beach from them. Meanwhile, another part of the group had begun to arrange the beach sand around Tommy like a mermaid. After several minutes of work, which consisted of digging, piling and sculpting, the final product could most accurately be described as a masterpiece.
We then continued to construct a human pyramid of ten people, which took three attempts before it was accomplished, and perfected. The sun had long begun its quotidian descent out of the blue sky, and gray clouds that bore a dreary resemblance to those from the morning began to return in the sky. At this, we began our journey back to the hotel along the same path we came: from the open white beaches of the bay to the arid forests of the paths to the cobblestones of the town. By the time we had returned, the sun was reaching the tips of the horizon. After a long and active day, we prepared for dinner , which we took in a typical cobblestone street of Puerto Ayora that was nocturnally covered in tables and chairs. There, under the open and expansive sky of the Galapagos Islands, we enjoyed our dinner, which seemed a reward for such a day filled with liveliness and activity.
(More pictures from this day were previously posted!)

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