7 October ~2017
I returned to Bonaire for the fifth time, and spent two weeks mostly snorkeling and kayaking. I didn't do as much freediving as my previous trips, since I usually am alone out on the reefs, with noone to assist me in case of shallow water blackout. Instead I equiped my camera underwater housing with a vertical and horizontal kayak fin, and was able to drop it down to 30 feet and tow it with a rope tied to an inflated buoy. This worked remarkably well except in very strong current, when the camera setup would face in to the current.
Tricia joined me during the second week, and we had a wonderful and adventurous time. We snorkeled every day, and went out on the kayak to the Lac Bay reef. We climbed 55 feet almost straight down with a guide to see a fresh water cave beneath the coral. Every evening we walked in to town at sunset for dinner and/or ice cream. The best was sitting on the second story patio watching the sea and the clouds in the morning, planning our day with several cups of coffee. Thank You. Tricia.
I already have my next trip reserved and ticketed. I am traveling in spring to the island of Niue in the South Pacific. Niue is almost the size of Bonaire (251 sq km on Niue vs 294 sq km on Bonaire), but has less then 2000 residents living on it. Only natives of Niue are allowed to own land on the island. Niue has no rivers or streams, which gives it some of the clearest water in the world - clearer even that around Bonaire. Niue has a reef on the West side, and several coves and caverns behind the reef line, which have sea tracks down to them. I am reading everything I can find about Niue, and am excited about seeing some South Pacific coral and fish. I need to be safe during this solo trip, since Niue is 1000 miles south of the equator, and you have to be aware of when the tides are rising and falling over the reef. (and not get caught in a rip tide going out). There are also highly poisonous sea snakes that go into the water to kill and eat eels. Apparently they are very common and curious, and have been known to swim right up to divers and snorkelers to check them out. (will try to be calm if that happens). There are also Coconut Crabs on the island that get up to a meter from leg to leg, and weight 9 pounds. ( Here is a link to a video from Niue that shows a snorkeler encountering a sea snake and then a white tip reef shark soon after entering the water)