Friday, November 16, 2007
A glass bottom boat trip from Lahaina harbor, Maui
This first photo is taken in front of the check-in place for the boat, of Pat taking a photo of me as I was taking a photo of her. In the background you can see a part of the Reefdancer, the yellow boat behind her, as well as a catamaran across the small harbor near the breakwater.
I have never been on a boat like this and it is a bit different from most. I have some photos taken down below that will give a better idea of what we found inside below the water level. Here is a photo that shows more of the boat and a couple of the crew.
Pat & I are sitting near the stern (back) end of the underwater observation area. The circular stairs behind us are another way to get back to the main deck but are not the primary way.
We left the harbor on about a 20 minute trip to the reef area they use. I was surprised at how shallow all the water there was. We could see the bottom all the way out although it was not as interesting as when we arrived at the coral reef. It is kind of hard to get good photos through these windows and I am sure the color balance is not perfect, but here are a few examples of what we saw:
This shows the reef itself. Coral is alive and growing and is a very important part of the ecology of the ocean. Many fish and other sea creatures live in or near these coral reefs. I don't think there are any noticeable fish in this photo but they are there.
When we arrived over the reef one of the crew, a gal from England, went over the side diving to bring up to the windows some of the things to show us. Many of the fish gathered near her. Here she is bringing a spiny urchin to the window to show. Pat took this photo with our little Sony camera.
Another photo of the diver outside the windows.
This is a school of fish known as Black Durgon Triggerfish or in Hawaiian, humu humu-'ele 'ele. They are an example of those that tend to cluster around divers when they are in the water. The fish are probably around 10 inches in length, maybe a foot, and have that very bright stripe along their bodies where both the upper and lower fins join the body. This is another of Pat's photos.
This view is looking forward from where we were sitting and shows Pat starting up the stairs to the main deck. When we started back toward the harbor we all went up above for the return trip. This boat was pretty good sized, as you can tell from these two photos.
There are a lot of popular things to do in Hawaii around the water and this is one of them, but neither of us were interested in trying this. I guess it is pretty safe because even if the boat towing you stops suddenly the parachute will lower you to the water at a speed that you should not be hurt. At least seriously.
This scene is on the deck as we were returning to the harbor which is ahead and to the port side of the boat. We were glad that we had decided to go in the morning as the sea was smooth enough to make it easy to stand on the deck and we got to see and photograph things that we would have missed had we been below the whole trip. Notice the canvas "tent" above the head of the pilot. Even this early, about 11 in the morning, the sun was starting to get pretty intense. Especially if you were stuck there driving the boat! The hills behind the town are the foothills for the West Maui Mountains. Maui is almost like two islands that have been connected by lava to make one island. This part is older and these mountains are more "rounded" than the newer part of the island formed by Mt. Haleakala, where we were staying. We went to Mt. Haleakala on Sunday and have photos still to come from there.
The ocean going racing sailboat, the America II, is now out of Lahaina Harbor and available to go on. Here she is heading out of the harbor under power before raising sails. This boat was an America's Cup contender a few years ago and is quite fast.
I did get a few photos of my favorite subject while she was on the deck. Pat is concentrating here on her next photo.
The Reefdancer is rounding the breakwater at the entrance to the small harbor at Lahaina. You probably remember that sailboat I had a photo of that had sunk on a reef just outside this harbor in a previous post. You can see from this photo how small that entrance is and there are reefs all around, so that is why the owner wanted to stop overnight and wait for daylight before entering. Unfortunately he anchored too close to one of the reefs and his boat was sunk overnight on that reef.
We enjoyed our trip that day but I had hoped for more to see while near the reefs and better visibility through the boat's underwater windows. The cost wasn't very much and it did give us an outing on the water. Maybe the next time we will spring for the submarine trip.
I'm SO looking forward to seeing more of your Maui pics!
The first photo looks like Pat is wearing a life preserver for a hat! You have her centered just right!! hahaha
That glass botoomed boat looked neat!
Thanks for visiting my blog. My main blog is Mary's Writing Nook, which is the one your posted on. I appreciate your visit and comments.
I am so happy for the both of you and think of you guys often.
Links to this post: