We’ve almost sailed across the entire Pacific ocean – many would call that “adventurous”, “brave”, or even “daring”. The truth is, however, that I’m a bit of a wimp, especially when it comes to high speeds (sailing, hence, is no problem) and heights. My nervous characteristics all came into play on Monday night when we went to see Mt. Yasur.
Words can hardly describe what it is like to stand on the edge of an active volcano. The fiery red lava was boiling in the gigantic cauldron hundreds of feet below us, spewing ash and violently spitting truck-sized volcanic rocks out every minute. One mound of lava rock was still red-hot sitting on path along the crater’s rim as we walked by. The noise as she blew was deafening and we were told that her activity level was a ‘3’. At level ‘4’ you aren’t allowed up there. I don’t believe that there many, if any, other active volcanoes in the world that you can get this close to. Certainly not in any developed countries.
Beautiful and awesome as it was, my limit was reached as we stood on the highest ridge above the crater with drop-offs on either side. Side A – into the volcano, side B – off the edge of the mountain. My vertigo’ed brain was spinning. Poor Will, I dragged him from this ‘best viewing spot’ and we had to watch from a lower, flatter, view point. It was still spectacular, although I do wish I could have been a bit less wimpy to get the full effect from above.
Volcano videos coming soon!
After a sad goodbyes to SV Okestern and SV Ninita (we will see them at Christmas, so not goodbye for long!), we left Tanna yesterday afternoon with SV Orion. We’re just passing the French Loyalty Islands and will arrive in Noomea, New Caledonia, tomorrow afternoon. Noomea is our final South Pacific Port (!!!) before we sail to Australia.
21 14.5′ S
Winds 20 SE