Today was saw some pretty great stuff. We left for Speyside (the complete opposite side of the island, about a 1.5 hour drive) fairly early in hopes of getting to go to Little Tobago Island. We lucked out. We waited on the beach for about an hour before we hopped in the little boat. It was just us, the 'guide' (mediocre guide), and two uh, how do I put it nicely?...Well, I can't put it nicely. Two other people who got the big time thumbs down. I'll refrain from further comment.
Despite the other two people (blah!), Little Tobago was pretty awesome. The boat ride over was a ton of fun - holy speedy little trip! Thought we might fly outta the boat there a few times! The water was a little rough and the guy was having a difficult time docking it. So, we kinda jumped out into 4 feet of water and swam to the shore. Which was sketchy, because I had the camera gear, ya know? Somehow, the whole jumping into the water thing ended all right. Luckily, Zac is 6'4 so I passed it on to him when he was in the water. Yikes.
We took a short hike to the top and saw some Magnificent Frigatebirds, a few Brown Boobies, 4 Red-footed Boobies and roughly 75-80 Tropicbirds. Sweet!
There were two Tropicbird nests at the top of the ridge. They were pretty well hidden by the trees and branches but I got a headshot that is pretty cute. You gotta love birds on nests! These guys were, dare I say it- neat-o!
We stayed at the top for about 30 minutes (we could have stayed all day) and I tried desperately to get flight shots. For a photographer (and one who takes lots of bird photos), I'm really not a patient person. And flight shots are my nemesis. They make me insane, really. The ones in this entry were a few select ones out of probably 150. I deleted the vast majority of them. I actually really love the first two shots, despite not being crystal clear, and am more or less happy with the others, considering my usual (un)luck with the flight shots.
I didn't even take a picture of the view up there because I was so intent on getting a damn flight shot. That kind of bothers me but oh well. It's imbedded in my head at least. It was really cool to be up there watching all the birds. It was a horrifying drop off and looked like there were some some crazy currents at the bottom. Good stuff!
On the hike back down we saw an Audubon's Shearwater's burrow but there was no bird in it. I didn't know they nested in little ground holes though, so that was interesting.
We got back to the boat and dropped our two favorite people (please note sarcasm) off and then we went snorkeling for about 30 minutes. Again, not enough time in the water but it was still excellent snorkeling. This is one thing I regret about the trip: not bringing my snorkeling gear. We tried to go lightweight so I didn't bring it. I freaking love snorkeling! So, well, the logical solution now is to find a cheap ticket to Hawaii and just snorkel for a week. Zac agrees. It was his idea.
We eventually headed back to Crown Point, got some groceries, coffee and gorged on a tasty dinner of hummus, baba ganoush and rum and pineapple juice. Excellent.
(all pictures are of Red-billed Tropicbirds, other than the dark one, a Magnificent Frigatebird)