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IceBear - Bay of Islands Lau Group June 12-16

Every place we go seems more beautiful than the previous place. Lomolomo is in the Lau Group and we gave Kava as a gift to the Chief and then proceeded to go around the island to a pretty cove that had a beautiful large cabin cruiser tied up to a small pier and then we saw an ATV parked on the rocks. There were 271 stairs that led to a magnificent plantation cut from the hills and mountains overlooking the Pacific! It reminded Kurt of a beautiful 18 hole golf course with palm trees dotting the middle of fairways,except with cows and horses and sheep grazing in the middle of the course! They were all busy cutting the grass. There were concrete cart trails all along this course.Every few acres, new fencing had been put up and we were greeted by a native woman who worked there. She showed us her small establishment of pretty shacks with one shack announcing,"Sometime Store" on its outdoor sign. Inside was a few canned goods, mostly canned mackerel and corned beef, a favorite in Tonga. After walking about a half hour, we came upon the 

Overlook through a wooded trail. Before one got to the ocean view, a gravesite marked, Alardyce, born April 9th,1881,died April 13th 1937, lay before the ocean view. The ocean below the cliff was spectacular with blue reefs, muffin top islets and the Pacific beyond. We followed a circular route back, followed the trail back to Icebear and sailed as a small 7 boat fleet back to where the cliff is located around the reefs to the Bay of Islands. We anchored in 70 ft of water only to move later that day to another close curve in the topography to 36 ft. That night and for the next 2 nights we were enthralled with the Bat Coves, where thousands of upside down bats were leaving there trees to hunt insects during the night. The following morning we crossed the bay to a nature made Gaudi Cathedral Bat Cave, where a beautiful shallow reef and coral aquarium separated this drip castle domed cave where you could swim into the cave and look 2 stories up to more hanging bats. Our presence didn't wake these bats like the previous night in the bat lagoon, but after about an hour we realized that the tide was going out and we needed a little water to swim above

the sharp coral to exit the cave. Had it been the other way around, and the tide was coming in, a quick breath and surface dive would have allowed for a safe exit. Again, the surrounding reef had ornate living coral with even more exotic outcroppings of forms that I have not even seen in coral books.Kurt saw a sea snake giving it a wide berth.

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