Posted by: catamarantwooceans | August 17, 2012

With Gili–part 2

13.8.12 – Monday – From Koh Ngai it’s just 6 miles to Koh Muk and the Morokot or Emerald cave. When I came here with my friends about three weeks ago the tide was too high to go in; now I checked the tide and planned to come there on time. As we motored in the cave’s direction, I could see a lot of tourist boats near the entrance. That was good and bad; good – because it meant it was possible to go inside and bad because of the crowd. Coming in with the dinghy we saw that all the people were swimming in, holding waterproof torches.

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We went in with the dinghy, taking care not to bang our heads on the low ceiling and not to run the swimmers over. They say the cave, or rather tunnel is 80 meters long; seemed less but at the end you go out into a 60 meters wide hong, with cliffs covered with all kind of vegetation towering over your head.

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Very difficult to take a good picture there because of the strong light shining from up above; it is very impressive. Once out of there our priority became Shopping; bad planning on my part left us with less than adequate very important food and drink items, like tomatoes, eggs, mineral water for Gili and beer for both of us. We motored to the east of the island, where I thought a village and a few resorts could be found. The sea in that area is particularly shallow and the tide was at its lowest; so we took advantage of the catamaran’s low draft and anchored at 1.4 meters.

Going ashore we had to drag the dinghy because there was not enough water even for rowing. There are a few resorts on the east beach but most of them are closed, waiting for the high season in November. One that was open,Sivalai, gave us a map of the island and showed the way to the village and the shops. It is a simple fishermen’s village; a bit shabby but everyone had their scooters and we found most of the groceries we wanted. Like always, the children were lovely and welcoming.

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14.8.12 – Tuesday – The wind was light as we left Koh Muk and sailed south, passing Koh Talibong towards the twin Koh Liang islands. Liang Nua, the one on the north has a very shallow anchorage but looked prettier than that of Liang Tai, so I said to myself: "we’ve been there, we can anchor at 1.4 meters". I later found out it was not  the lowest water yet; as time passed the depth meter was showing decreasing numbers, finally stopping at 1.0 meters with the occasional 0.9.

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We went snorkeling; Gili has this unreasonable horror of jelly-fish, which we call "Medusa". She followed me and when I pointed out one she really freaked out. Relax Gili! This is not a Great White, it won’t attack you! There is a net protecting the reef near the island and we could see some nice fish but the visibility was bad, the water too low so we gave it up. We went ashore to see the deserted Park office and huts and the Tsunami warning tower.

I then went down to see the actual clearance of the keels; it was about 40 centimeters. I didn’t mind that but when the wind started to blow from the north, accelerating around the island and raising some chop I decided it was time to go to a better place. Passing the sand spit on the east of Koh Liang Tai we dropped our anchor at 3.6 meters and could relax. The view was just great.

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In the evening I tried, unsuccessfully, to fish. The light of my head-lamp attracted a strange creature which I lured into a bucket and then set free. It was about six inches long. Does anybody have an idea of what it is?

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15.8.12 – Wednesday – We are motoring to Koh Bulan which when meeting Koh Khao Yai creates a channel described in the guide as "magical"; how could we resist? Motoring in complete calm we pass a wreck of a barge with three containers still on it near Koh Phetra.

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This area is quite shallow and when I became sure we will have at least 8 meters depth I let the trolling gear out. Since the Mahi Mahi, which contributed two meals for us, we had no success fishing. Gili vented out her frustration and concluded by directing strong words at our Yo Zuri lure on which our hopes lay. As if Poseidon heard her speech, the reel sprang into action and what a fish it was! a 23 pounds Spanish Mackerel!

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It only looks as if I am holding it easily in one hand; the beast hangs on an 8 millimeters rope; It yielded 25 man-meals which is much more than we need, so we kept 6 meals for ourselves and gave the rest to two young men whom we found on a long-tail boat in the Bulan not so magical bay. But hey! what’s that on the beach? Monkeys! Gili love monkeys so we’ll go ashore when the water comes up some.

Out with the dinghy to tour the bay we did find our monkeys but they were shy and stayed on the trees away from the beach. The bay was full of cargo containers, were they from that sunken barge? Who brought them here?I have no idea, but some locals were hard at work salvaging whatever there was inside. I sneaked a picture when they were not looking.

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Responses

  1. Its called MANTIS SHRIMP,have very powerfull front arms


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