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Friday, October 31, 2014

Leafy Sea Dragons in Adelaide

To start with Adelaide was only a stop-over on the Indian Pacific to catch a couple of good nights sleep. But when I started to talk with people about it, I discovered that there is a lot to do and see.

As usual when I arrive in a new city, I try to explore it by following Geocaches. In Adelaide I spotted something special, a Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy themed Where-I-Go that had points to visit all around town. Even though the distances were large, I gave it a go.

Here's the log I wrote after completing it:

That was unexpected! Without warning the Heart of Gold dropped me in the middle of Adelaide and left without the trace. And just when I was to enjoy a Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster! So I had no other choice but to make a new one...

Being stranded without transport is tough, but after asking around I got hold of a three-gear hire bike. Not my first choice, but beggars can't be choosers. So into the saddle I hopped and of I went.

After one hour I had a bit of a struggle with a suntiger but managed to extract the first ingredient. After cycling for almost two hours along the coastline I finally detected the correct mixture of Santraginean water.

Fortunately from there the Mega-Gin and the Marsh Gas weren't so far away. After also procuring a dose of Ol' Janx Spirit, a hearty olive and a bit of Hypermint I ran into a small problem. Those earthlings didn't understand the urgency of my mission and demanded that I return the bike by 4:30pm. So back to the city I went.

From there I took one of those big wheeled horizontal people transporters to get me close to the final ingredient. After a short hike it was successfully retrieved. Now I had all ingredients, but no container to safely mix them... Just then I noticed a location where the Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster could be prepared, and it wasn't even that much further, considering how far I've come today. What I forgot to consider was my absolute lack of winged transportation, so I ended up walking quite a bit longer until I reached the correct place.

On the way there I spotted a couple of natives, one was a small grey cuddly thing with a button nose, and the others were two jumpy-thingies. One of them even had two heads! "Earth can't be all that bad, if there are other two-headed creatures around", I thought to myself and continued on my way.

Once at the correct location it took a good deal of rummaging until the container showed itself and then I was finally in possession of a Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster! And after the day I had, I could definitely use it!

PS: Found 6:39 pm, #7 of 8 (day), #677 (total)
PPS: Summary - 6.5 hours spent on a bicycle, 3 hours hiking and 1 hour in buses.
After that I was very exhausted. But the next day promised even more excitement! Diving with Leafy Sea Dragons!

1.5 hours South of Adelaide is Rapid Bay, a beach with a big jetty where the Leafy Sea Dragons normally hang out. We had a very nice dive with clear water and a beautiful giant Cuttlefish, but alas no Sea Dragons.

Because chances of spotting them during a second dive were slim, we next headed farther South to Victor Harbor's The Bluff dive site. Here the conditions weren't as good as before, the water was murkier and visibility was limited to 5 meters, but that was soon forgotten when we spotted our first Leafy Sea Dragon 3 minutes into the dive! And it wasn't the only one. During the swim out we spotted 6 Leafy Sea Dragons, 4 of those were pregnant males.

Since it was getting a bit chilly in the water we decided to turn around. On our way back we spotted 4 more Leafy Sea Dragons, 2 of which were pregnant males.  Some of those might have been the same we spotted before, but a couple probably were not. That was a truly fantastic dive that surpassed my wildest hopes :).

The train left in the early evening the next day, so I had a good couple of hours to explore the city a bit further. And on this excursion I spotted a Swiss restaurant called Alphütte which was flying the Swiss flag! Unfortunately, it was closed that day.

I had three fantastic days in Adelaide and was only a bit sad that time didn't allow for a visit to Kangaroo Island and Port Lincoln, famous for it's Great White Shark Cage Diving. Maybe next time ;)

More pictures from Adelaide can be found in my webalbum.

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