April 18, 2010

San Cristobal

We are having a blast. We hired a taxi for the day yesterday, visiting the southern volcano and hiking its perimeter. The volcano has the only fresh water lake in the Galapagos, the lack of fresh water being a constant problem thus. We then visited the Giant Tortoise reserve, observing about 30 different animals at all stages of development. My take on the situation is that as soon as the first pirate/whaler stepped ashore as did the first rat and since then the competition from rats, cats, goats, pigs, dogs has essentially wiped out the native tortoise except for those kept in reserves. We then visited a beach on the southern side of the island for a much needed swim after all of the hiking.

In the "town" area they have built a long board walk and a park. Part of the park is a set of slides that goes down into the ocean at high tide. Well after some warming up the kids want to play there everyday now. The only problem is that you have to wait in line.... for the sea lion pups to go down the slides as well. The kids are in heaven with all of the wild life.

There is some work going on. We needed to replace all the diesel we used (65 gallons for 100 hours of motoring, which is pretty efficient). The only way to do this is by jerry jug. We hired some jugs from our agent and got them on board. After some experimenting as we had not done this before a combination of siphon, hand pump and pouring the last third of each jug worked with very little spilled. The process took about 3 hours, with Jake providing much needed assistance the entire time.