Sunday, February 22, 2015

The Wall of Tears

We rented bikes in town (at $2 per hour) to ride out the 7km dirt trail to El Muro de las Lagrimas – The Wall of Tears. The wall was built by convicts that were kept on the island – before tourism was such a hit – from 1946 to 1959. The wall is completely purposeless, except to make the life of the convicts even worse. It is an impressive dry-stack, but you really would have thought that the prison commandante could have come up with a project that at least furthered his needs. The wall goes from one side of a small valley to the other and does nothing. I’m sure somewhere near here you could find a fairly large unmarked grave of the inmates who never made it out.
isabelaIMG_9712 Free range tortoises were along the road where there was shade under growth.
The park has put in helpful interpretive signs like this one – No tortoise petting.
And for those of us with long hair, there was some demonstration signs of how to take the down hills.
Its kind of hard to see, but the background peninsula is covered with blue-footed boobies. The bike trail runs along the ocean for most of the way till it heads up hill to get to the prison site. Which, for me, conveniently made it downhill on the way back.
Nearer town on the trail was a locals cemetery. It seemed like they were all new comers, I didn’t see any old markers.
That evening from the back of the boat we were entertained by hundreds of bombarding blue-footed boobies going after their evening meal.
Not great focus, but here are the boobies just as they hit the water. The little fry didn’t have a chance.
This afternoon we did a snorkel at one of the only places we are allowed to go without a National Park guide. Here is an artist rendition of a penguin shooting by us underwater. These guys are bullet fast underwater, and hard to see much less photograph.
Chris found this 10-12 inch open oyster. If you biggerrate by clicking on it you can see a striped 3-1/2 to 4 in fish on the lower lip.
And a gratuitous mangrove photo for our friend Save-the-Mangroves Will. You can see a heron center top hanging off the mangrove waiting for a fish to come by.

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