Tuesday, September 7, 2010

American Tanker

And so it appears I easily survived my first two weeks Nick-less in Guam.  That’s right… Nick is home! He came back from his first trip to the Philippines early Saturday morning, just in time for the long weekend.  Luckily the rainy season blues of last week subsided and we had a couple of lovely days to go exploring. 
Saturday afternoon we launched Propeller off a boat ramp just south of the navy base. Once out on the water, the first thing we saw was a beautiful rainbow. As I was taking pictures, the thought crossed my mind, “How neat, a rainbow and no rain.” You can imagine what happened next. The good thing is, it doesn’t matter if you get rained on in the boat. Everything can get wet. In fact, I find it’s better to jump right in. The ocean is warmer than the rain.
Our first stop was a site we've dove before called Coral Gardens. This place is packed with lots of interesting corals and an abundance of colorful fish. Luckily many of the corals come up to the surface, so there's plenty to see without a tank of air. We explored the interesting corals and sea life for a while before hopping back in the Prop for more snorkeling guesswork. 

Trumpet Fish
Nick Fish
There was an island just less than a mile off shore that looked interesting. Let’s just say, we guessed right! Once we approached the island we found ourselves on a shallow shelf where warm waters rushed in an out pushing fish, loose plants, and snorkelers (us) back and forth like a pendulum over the coral-carpeted rocky floor. Got a few good pictures, but we’ve decided that pictures really can’t do justice to just how beautiful this area is.  That’s why we’ve decided to put this destination as a must-see on our visitor tour list. 
Scared Puffer
Don't step on one of these
Yesterday was a perfect day for a holiday. We slept in, had a big breakfast, then loaded up the Guam Prop with dive gear. The tank rental place is conveniently at the boat ramp, so one stop and we were off. We headed out into Apra Harbor (the navy base harbor) and dove the American Tanker. Most shipwrecks are very deep dives, 100 ft. deep or more, but it so happens that all of the good stuff on this one is more like 60-80 feet, which is great because it's not as cold (88 degrees!) and you can stay down longer. 
According to our dive book, the American Tanker is an old water barge which was purposely sunk to make a reef. While you aren’t supposed to go inside of a shipwreck unless you have wreck training, this particular wreck has a lot of open outer rooms that make it easy to swim through a door and find an immediate path out through a window in the ceiling. Not gonna lie, the thought of going inside freaked me out at first, but as always, Nick’s sense of adventure is contagious, so I found myself poking around inside too. I wish I had a better picture of the whole wreck, but between the spotty visibility (bay waters are never as clear as ocean waters), and the poor lighting this deep, we didn’t come out with any. One more thing you’ll just have to see with your own eyes on your visit. Well worth the effort to get dive certified.

I have to say, we are so fortunate to have our own boat out here. Sure, there are great dive charters around, but having the freedom to go where we want when we want and not have to schedule around the weather or work or, well, anything else, makes this place that much more open for adventure. Some of the most fun we've had was leaning over the side of the boat, sticking a masked face in the water while we're moving, just to see what's under there (we found a shipwreck debris area that's not in our dive books!). And five boat trips in, we have barely scratched the surface of all there is to do here. Possibilities are literally endless.
The rest of the week I’m playing golf, starting my new job (which I’ll post about  once I’ve actually done something), and sending Nick off on his next trip. He was supposed to leave for it early today, but now he’s not leaving until Friday. That plus the fact that he’s coming home a few days earlier than we thought adds up to a work trip first: Leaving later, coming home earlier… that never happens! One more check in the “pros” column for this place.
One last note – Thanks so much for all your fun comments, messages, emails, phone call mentions, etc. I’m thrilled to know this is a helpful way for us to stay connected despite such distance. This place wouldn’t be nearly as fun without the ability to share it with all of you! So thanks for visiting us again. And now, how about visiting us for real?

1 comment:

  1. Such fun! I love the pic with the flag. I'm so jealous that Jenny is planning a trip out! xo!


Hey there! This blog is no longer active. If you write a comment, I will receive it, but may not respond right away. Thanks for stopping by!