Today was a great day! I got up early and was able to talk to my family. I am missing them big time, but trying to focus on the amazing experience I am super fortunate to be a part of.
Today we went to White Island which is an active volcano. Actually all volcanoes in New Zealand are because they have erupted in the last 10,000 years, but White Island is currently active. We took a boat ride out, and the ocean was VERY choppy. My tummy did not really like it at all.
But we made it out there and it was worth it. We saw fumaroles which are basically holes with sulfur, and water vapor coming out and mudpots which is boiling mud! Even just a few days ago it was ashing. I got some great footage, but I don’t think I can attach it to this site. We had to wear hard hats, and gas masks. They told us what to do if there was some activity. We had to make sure we stayed on the paths so we didn’t break through…it was super amazing.
A fumarole spewing out sulfur and other nasty gases.
The ride back was much better, and I was able to chat with a few members of the crew. One of them had just graduated from high school 2 weeks ago. It was cool to get his perspective on things American and I was able to ask questions about things Kiwi. Then another member of the crew just graduated with her Biology degree from the University and has decided to go on another year and become a teacher! So we certainly had a few things in common and had a pretty nice chat. Not much wildlife sightings on the trip though, which was a bummer. I did see one flying fish, and a dorsal fin, of a dolphin, as well as, many birds. I was amazed at how close they fly to the water’s surface.
I guess I better get some rest, we are packing up and moving to another location tomorrow, Rotarua. I believe we may be sampling on the way over.