Sunday, May 13, 2012

Another way to see the reef

Although we had purchased snorkel and goggles, my lack of confidence in the
water stopped me from going out of my depth and in turn I hadn't seen any of
the colourful fish that I had heard about. The way around this was to book
on to a glass bottom boat trip and include coral viewing and snorkelling as
part of the trip. I still hadn't seen what I came to see.

The boat leaves from Tantabiddi boat ramp which is about forty kilometres
from Exmouth and close to the national park. We chose to take the trip on
Sunday, 13 May as we were due to leave the national park. Fortunately for
me the water was like a mirror (as I am not a keen sailor either and any
evident white cap waves are likely to cause me to change my mind and want to
stay safe on shore) and off we went in this small tinny like boat. There
were only fourteen paying guests and the skipper and his assistant. The
first task of the day was the safety instruction - a take-off of the life
jacket demonstration on an aeroplane. Still I was pleased to know where the
lifejackets were stored. Peter and I were the last on board and sat near
the skipper and Peter enjoyed chatting to him.

The water was very clear and we had a wonderful view through the glass
bottom of the boat. We didn't have to go far from shore before the first of
the coral came into view. We did try to take some photos but they weren't
very clear so we bought the skipper's DVD and photos so we could share them
where. You can check out the website if you
want to see more. It was a great trip and we highly recommend if you happen
to be in Exmouth at some stage.

Today was a day of firsts for me - I climbed off the back of a boat into the
water (fortunately it was warm!) not knowing the depth of the water and with
goggles, snorkel and flippers (and a trusty noodle to ensure that I kept
afloat), I was able to confidently float away from the boat and experience
the wonder of the Ningaloo Reef. To say it was amazing is an
understatement. It was worth all the kilometres we have driven to come to
this part of Western Australia. If you ever get the opportunity come and go
on this boat trip with Alec and his team, you will not be disappointed.

I hope you enjoy the photos - I didn't take them but by using Alec's photos
you will get a much better idea of what I saw today. It was amazing!

Peter didn't want to go in the water so he supervised from the boat and
watched as the young guy who was the crew for the day went under the boat to
clean the glass. He wasn't the only person on the trip who didn't go into
the water - he was happy with what he had seen through the glass.

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