San Cristóbal: Punta Pitt and Cerro Brujo

Jan 13, 2018 - National Geographic Islander


This morning we landed on an olivine beach at Punta Pitt, which is located at the northeastern part of San Cristrobal and is also the closest point to the mainland. The temperature was 71 degrees Fahrenheit, much warmer than what we have experienced elsewhere. From the beginning we observed several lava lizards and a few mockingbirds, both species endemic to San Cristobal. Mockingbirds keep us entertained with their vocalizations as we walked along the trail.

As we climbed the path we observed the barren landscape and the erosion on the hills of one of the oldest islands of the archipelago. We saw a few blue-footed booby juveniles being fed by their parents and a few red-footed boobies nesting in trees.  

In the afternoon we landed at Cerro Brujo, a tuff formation adjacent to a white sandy beach. Oystercatchers, marine iguanas, lava gulls, great blue herons, and playful sea lions were part of the reception committee. From the sandy beach we could contemplate the sunset with a spectacular background, Kicker Rock, a tuff formation with a very peculiar shape. This was the perfect way to finish our cruise.

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About the Author

Luis Vinueza

Naturalist

Luis arrived in the Galápagos Islands for the first time when he was 11 years old in 1983, and from that time on he knew that Galápagos would one day be his home. He returned to the islands in 1995 and spent 14 months camping in a tent. Seven of those months were spent on Española Island, studying the relationship of reproductive success and mate retention of Nazca boobies. In 1997, he started working for the marine lab at the Charles Darwin Research Station (CDRS) on different fields including diving surveys to assess the patterns of marine biodiversity around the Galápagos Marine Reserve. His research included counting lobsters and sea cucumbers and participating as an advisor for CDRS during the negotiation process that led to the 1998 creation of the Galápagos Marine Reserve. 

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