November 2, 2009

Great Barrier Reef - Part 3

Rise and Shine again!

Yea! The skies are blue and the waters are calm enough to set sail today. Sharon and I pick our spots on the "Spirit of 1770" and settle in for the 1.5 hour cruise to Lady Musgrave Island in the Great Barrier Reef.

Lady Musgrave Island is only 32 nautical miles from the Town of 1770 and is the second most southern Island on the Great Barrier Reef. So the fish and coral we will see are going to be amazing! We've been told that this is some of the best snorkeling in Queensland.

So off we go with Captain John at the wheel.

Let me give you a little tip here if I may; please make sure that you take some sort of pill BEFORE taking this boat ride! I can usually keep from sharing my breakfast with complete strangers on a boat as long as I'm on the top deck...outside. So I didn't feel the need to take something to prevent me from embarrassing myself in front of everyone today. Trust me, this is not an easy cruise. So if you tend to get the itziest bit qweesie on a boat.....take a pill!!! Enough said.

We arrive at a pontoon only 300 meters from the Island. We are then divided into three groups, A, B and C. This is for the purpose of taking the launch to Lady Musgrave Island and the glass bottom boat ride. So as group A heads on out to the island and group B boards the glass bottom boat ride, group C can't wait to get in that water!
The water is just to darn cold for me, and I am still recovering from the ride here. So I decide to just enjoy the views for now.
Sharon however could care less how cold that water is and gets a wet suit on and wastes no time snorkeling.
It's now our turn to take a tour of Lady Musgrave Island and Lagoon. This Island is unique to the Great Barrier Reef. It is formed by a huge 8 nautical mile circle of coral wall which protects the 1000 acre inner lagoon. Lady Musgrave Island is commonly known as the "Jewel in the Crown of the Great Barrier Reef". And as we set foot on the coral beach it doesn't take long to see why.
As we walk along the coral beach, our guide is very informative about the many species of birds that live on this island. One we were able to see was the White-capped noddies (black noddie). This is where they nest in large numbers from October through March.
We weren't as fortunate to see the Burrowing Shearwaters (mutton birds) even though we are here at the end of their nesting season which is October through May. Seems they feed at sea during the day, returning at dusk. As we walked along the path, we were able to see their burrows.
There are several fascinating things about this Island, but for me the most fascinating was the Pisonia Grandis. Now there are several types of foliage here such as casuarinas, pandanus, argusia and scaevola. But it was interesting to learn that the Pisonia Grandis has the ability to regenerate itself from fallen trunks and limbs.

Well it's time to get off of this Island and get back to the pontoon so I can do some snorkeling! For those of you who know me, you know that I am not crazy about getting into the water, ever! Plus, the water is still just too darn cold for me. But this is the Great Barrier Reef! So after Captain John hands me a wet suit and insists that I need to get in that water, I take the plunge.

Okay, I'm going in!

Okay, I'm in! Hello fishy.

There I did it. Are you happy now?

After enjoying lunch, which is provided as part of this tour, we take a ride on the glass bottom boat. It was amazing to see all the different types of coral along with the many types of brilliantly colored fish. We also saw a sting ray, a small shark and we were lucky enough to see a sea turtle.

It's time to head back to the Town of 1770. As the sun sets Sharon and I are in agreement that this trip was well worth the drive and the wait!

There are plenty more pictures of our day on the Great Barrier Reef. Go to "Where's Debbie" and click on the album "Great Barrier Reef Part 3"

1 comment:

  1. I wanna go there again. This post is very evocative & enticing. Planning to go next week.

    great barrier reef diving


Thank you so much for stopping by my blog. I love reading your comments!

Have a Fabulous Day!

Related Posts with Thumbnails