Located in the south eastern Pacific Ocean, 3,500 km (2,200 miles) away from Chile, Easter Island (called Rapa Nui by the locals and Isle de Pascua by the Chileans) is one of the world’s most isolated inhabited islands. Not surprisingly, it has the most remote international airport in the world, with two weekly flights, importing and exporting hundreds of visitors.
The primary attractions at Easter Island are the monolithic human figures carved from rock (Moai) and the civilization that produced them. But the seafaring skills of that civilization are as stunning as their carvings. There is debate about whether the creators of the Moai were from primarily from the mainland or from Polynesia, but there is no doubt about the fact that these were remarkably skilled navigators. They found the island, after all.
When you’re on a tiny island surrounded by thousands of miles of water, the sea produces an irresistible draw. We had a tour scheduled on our last day that would take us to the beautiful sandy Anakena beach but I couldn’t wait to get into the water, despite the fact that the beach near our hotel in Hanga Roa was rocky and shallow, more suitable for surfing than swimming,
Weekend surfer, Hanga Roa
I love trying to get a picture of the wave as it’s about to crest. I swam out pretty far, played around with the white balance and the ISO, then remembered another hazard in the Pacific – sea urchins. So I paddled back.
A puffer fish that was discovered by a group of boys on shore
When I took this picture I noticed that the shots I took after my swim were overexposed. This shot, of a sculpture in a park in Hanga Roa, confirmed that the exposure settings were off. I guess I shouldn’t have been making adjustments to the camera while trying to avoid sea urchins.
Canon recommends that you soak the camera in fresh water for a couple of hours after using it in salt water. I don’t think I soaked it enough, and the spots really show in night shots
The next day we went to Anakena beach, on the Northern end of the Island. This beach was sandy, urchin-free and very nice.
With no sharp animals to worry about I was free to experiment with the movie mode.
Since the wind and the waves were a little too rough for snorkeling, I didn’t get a chance to try out the D10 at any depth lower than 2 ft. Maybe next time…