Thursday, October 30, 2014

Avaiki Cave with Cassidy

Getting ready to jump

Cassidy on perch in cave

Cave Exploring - October 23, 2014

Yesterday morning we took the rental car and explored lots of new sea tracks, a cave where they buried people and had a pile of human bone remains, had a picnic overlooking the lee side of the island with waves crashing against a sheer rock wall, then back down the Anapala Chasm where ancient people use to hike down to get fresh water. We went for a great swim down the chasm and back, it was cold water!! There was a beautiful small spot in the middle of the chasm with sunlight shining in and you could see down the sides and to the bottom. It was awesome!! By the time I swam back across it, the sun had already fallen behind one of the sheer cliff walls and it was dark again. 

We went home and returned the rental car and got the kids and Courage loaded into the dinghy for quiet time, then Cassidy and I headed out on the motorcycle!! We've never tried just the two of us on it. We went to the Talava Arch, a gorgeous arch at the end of the island over a large reef that you can walk on at low tide. You come through a cave to get to it. There are also a couple other smaller caves that you can explore along side the reef. I enjoyed seeing the live cowdries on the reef as well as watching the waves crashing around the arches. 

Then we headed back to town, had an ice cream, then headed out to a cave (?Vaihaca) which is recommended as guided-only. We met a German tourist who told of the horrors of this cave, narrow entrance, steep walls, etc. We had to see it. I thought we could just walk to it, look inside, see if we wanted to enter, then go. Little did I realize that the trail to the cave was as much or more treacherous than the cave itself!!! We hiked literally for almost an hour over rocks, through forests and jungles, etc. They have little orange triangles pointing the way, if not for those, we would surely have been lost. At one point we were walking over rocks covered in long leaves, but periodically you could see large blackness between the rocks. You have to wonder, how far down those spots go. I made clear to Cassidy that she can't fall, if she gets hurt, any rescue would take a long time. There's no way I can carry anyone out of this place. So, finally we find the cave. Cassidy dropped in first, there were ropes to hold onto. It was narrow, but not claustrophobic. As we slid down the opening into the cave, it opened up into this gorgeous oasis with water, mossy rocks with ferns on it, etc. Some light came in from above. At this point, on the guided tour, you jump into the water (looks like a long drop unless we were missing something), then swim to someplace, dive down and pop up into another dark cave. Then dive again, popping up in a final cave. That would be AWESOME, but I'm not doing that without a local guide. We were happy just to have been there and seen it. At this point, returning down the trail to the motorcycle before dark was going to be adventure enough for us. 

It was a great mother-daughter date!! I was totally worn out, but we had a great time!