|The northernmost point of land on Easter Island on the morning of our arrival. This is actually the flank of a broad volcano.||A close-up of the mysterious clouds shrouding the sun.|
Thursday, May 13, 2004 (End of the Easter Island Passage)
This morning everyone was up early because at long last we will be arriving at Easter Island, the most remote inhabited island on Earth. It's hard to believe we're actually here, at such an exotic and remote island—it's like visiting the far side of the moon. After all the days of planning and traveling, the dreaming and wondering, there it is right in front of us, Easter Island (Isla de Pascua in Spanish, and Rapa Nui in the native Polynesian dialect).
As the island came into view, it looked mysterious and a little foreboding due to heavy gray clouds and dim light. From the north, we motored towards the western side of the small triangular island where we would need to check-in with the Armada de Chile at the main (and only) town of Hanga Roa. As we got closer, we could see the island's exotic terrain, with numerous grass-covered volcano cones big and small, groves of trees here and there, and a scattering of buildings visible in the distance. It was so nice to see colors besides blue and gray, and definite objects like houses and cars, trees and horses; my eyes were feeling feature-starved after 19 days of only waves and clouds.
|Another view of the northernmost point of land, taken about eight minutes later.||Motoring towards Easter Island; the town of Hanga Roa is located in about the center of the picture where the island's profile dips the lowest.|
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