Saturday, 18 April 2015

Galápagos Day 2 (morning) - Sullivan Bay, Isla Santiago

Our first morning started a pattern that would be followed for the next 14 days - early breakfast (5:30 am) followed by a short panga ride for a 6:00 am landing.

This morning we were introduced to the volcanic geology of the Galápagos as we clambered ashore onto the vast, desolate lava field of Sullivan Bay on Isla Santiago.

Lava Field, Sullivan Bay, Isla Santiago, Galápagos
Pentax K-3, Pentax 16-50mm f/2.8 @ 19mm, ISO 1600, f/8 1/320

The remnants of various cinder cones lie scattered across the landscape.

Volcanic landscape, Sullivan Bay, Isla Santiago, Galápagos
Pentax K-3, Sigma 10-20mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 18mm, ISO 1600, f/8 1/1250 (stitched panorama)
Volcanic landscape, Sullivan Bay, Isla Santiago, Galápagos
Pentax K-3, Pentax 16-50mm f/2.8 @ 16mm, ISO 1600, f/11 1/100 
Volcanic landscape, Sullivan Bay, Isla Santiago, Galápagos
Pentax K-3, Pentax 16-50mm f/2.8 @ 34mm, ISO 1600, f/10 1/640

The early morning landing allowed us to avoid the overhead sun later in the day (by the time we left the lava field at 9:30 am, it was already scorching hot on the black lava)...

Walking on the lava field, Sullivan Bay, Isla Santiago, Galápagos
Pentax K-3, Pentax 16-50mm f/2.8 @ 50mm, ISO 1600, f/11 1/200

...and provided fantastic lighting for shots of the landscape and lava formations.

Lava, Sullivan Bay, Isla Santiago, Galápagos
Pentax K-3, Pentax 16-50mm f/2.8 @ 36mm, ISO 1600, f/8 1/320
Lava, Sullivan Bay, Isla Santiago, Galápagos
Pentax K-3, Pentax 16-50mm f/2.8 @ 39mm, ISO 1600, f/8 1/50
Lava, Sullivan Bay, Isla Santiago, Galápagos
Pentax K-3, Pentax 16-50mm f/2.8 @ 43mm, ISO 1600, f/8 1/640
Lava, Sullivan Bay, Isla Santiago, Galápagos
Pentax K-3, Pentax 16-50mm f/2.8 @ 36mm, ISO 1600, f/5.6 1/125
Lava, Sullivan Bay, Isla Santiago, Galápagos
Pentax K-3, Pentax 16-50mm f/2.8 @ 36mm, ISO 1600, f/8 1/125

Despite the desolation, life has found a way to get a foothold with two pioneer plants species growing in the lava cracks...

Lava Cactus, Sullivan Bay, Isla Santiago, Galápagos
Pentax K-3, Pentax 16-50mm f/2.8 @ 16mm, ISO 1600, f/16 1/125
Lava Cactus, Sullivan Bay, Isla Santiago, Galápagos
Pentax K-3, Pentax 16-50mm f/2.8 @ 28mm, ISO 1600, f/16 1/100
Mollugo Carpetweed, Sullivan Bay, Isla Santiago, Galápagos
Pentax K-3, Pentax 16-50mm f/2.8 @ 50mm, ISO 1600, f/4 1/200

Lava Lizards seem to eke out a living somehow.

Galapagos Lava Lizard, Sullivan Bay, Isla Santiago, Galápagos
Pentax K-3, Tamron 70-200mm f/2.8 @ 200mm, ISO 1600, f/5 1/1000
Galapagos Lava Lizard, Sullivan Bay, Isla Santiago, Galápagos
Pentax K-3, Tamron 70-200mm f/2.8 @ 200mm, ISO 1600, f/5 1/1000

and we found one bird species - Galápagos Dove - which turned out to be almost ubiquitous as we saw them in most environments and islands that we visited.

Gálapagos Dove, Sullivan Bay, Isla Santiago, Gálapagos
Pentax K-3, Tamron 70-200mm f/2.8 @ 200mm, ISO 800, f/4 1/1600

The other wildlife experience of the morning was provided by this Galápagos Sea Lion that decided the pangas tied up to the stern of the boat were suitable for basking.

Gálapagos Sea Lion, Sullivan Bay, Isla Santiago, Galápagos
Pentax K-3, Pentax 16-50mm f/2.8 @ 34mm, ISO 1600, f/10 1/640

Next...Isla Bartholomé

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