From the National Geographic Endeavour in Galápagos
Mar 22, 2012 - National Geographic Endeavour
Bartolomé Island and Chinese Hat
We had an early outing this morning, walking over 370 steps up to the summit of Bartolomé Island. Young lava flows, many volcanoes and a great moonscape welcomed us at this very barren place. After breakfast we decided to explore the underwater world of the Galápagos and went deep-water snorkeling around Pinnacle Rock. Some sharks were spotted as well as many fish aggregations spawning in the area. Exploring the beach and the glass-bottom boat were options for those who preferred a different way to enjoy the island.
Our ROV was deployed underwater, right next to the area where our snorkelers enjoyed the water. The ocean floor was covered with interesting schools of fish, and there was plenty of plankton in the water this time. Some penguins and sea lions were found near the snorkeling area.
National Geographic Endeavour navigated towards Chinese Hat, an islet situated in front of a young lava flow from James Island. We had some beach activities and again joined the underwater adventure by going snorkeling along the young lava of James Island. Some reef sharks were seen, and many Galápagos penguins were swimming with us in the water. About five penguins were also on the rocks, resting and waiting for the night to come. During our zodiac ride we spotted a Galápagos hawk, penguins and sea lion pups swimming in the shallow waters of Chinese Hat.