Whale Watching – The Biggest Show on Earth

Written by Cliff Calderwood

Whale watching is a spellbinding, entertaining, and thought-provoking adventure trip. It’s a show withrepparttar largest mammals on earth asrepparttar 142626 star performers. Whales are majestic and graceful giants, who’s every move seems effortless, choreographed, and yet playful. In this article discover how to getrepparttar 142627 most out of your trip.

Imagine a lazy summer’s afternoon on a boat in a gentle rolling ocean. A good breeze softly massages your face where you sit, and you begin to close your eyes and drift away…repparttar 142628 sound ofrepparttar 142629 boat’s engine begins to fade and finally stops. The boat, like you, is drifting overrepparttar 142630 waves and followingrepparttar 142631 breeze. It’s very peaceful and calm and after a stressful week you feel in harmony withrepparttar 142632 world. Then something explodes… out ofrepparttar 142633 water… and only a few feet from your nose! A 30-ton humpback…repparttar 142634 length of a large house... it breaches… and in another second is gone. And you’re left in disbelief and wonder.

And it’s justrepparttar 142635 start of your whale watching!

While whales are scattered throughoutrepparttar 142636 world there’s only a handful of accessible locations to view them in their natural environment. The coastal waters of New England andrepparttar 142637 west coast of North America are prime locations for whale watching. Hawaii and South Africa are also superb locations to spot whales, as arerepparttar 142638 ocean waters around New Zealand.

So if a vacation or trip takes you to any of these areas make sure you book a cruise and take inrepparttar 142639 largest show on earth.

Here’s some pointers to make sure you have an enjoyable whale watch.


Inrepparttar 142640 summer months whale watching is popular and so book early – many tours suggest one week to avoid disappointment.

Whale watching cruises can last anywhere from 3 hours to 41/2 hours. If whales are just playing hard to find, thenrepparttar 142641 captain will make every effort to stay out as long as they can to get a sighting.

While most boats are equipped with a place to buy food and drink they don’t usually mind you taking your own pack lunch or snacks. Because it can be a long ride until they findrepparttar 142642 whales and then back to port take a novel or your walkman and listen to your favorite music, or even whale song CD. If you’ve got young children take something to keep them entertained as well.


Before you book on a whale watching cruise check intorepparttar 142643 cruise company. Check out their web site, you’ll usually find information aboutrepparttar 142644 fleet’s experience and staff.

Chimborazo: Climbing Glaciers Near The Equator

Written by Steve Gillman

Climbingrepparttar glaciers torepparttar 142532 summit of Mount Chimborazo in Ecuador isn't highly technical. It is mountaineering, but how hard can it be, considering I went to 20,600 feetrepparttar 142533 first time I used crampons and an ice axe? Okay, I used them once for practice, on a sledding hill near my house. I climbed forty feet while people walked by with their sleds, telling their kids to stay away from me.

It's also easier to climb whenrepparttar 142534 guide drives you to 15,000 feet. Don't get me wrong. Climbingrepparttar 142535 last 5,600 feet was incredibly difficult, but not forrepparttar 142536 skill required. The air missing half of its oxygen is what had me quitting twenty times onrepparttar 142537 way up. It just gets difficult to move up there.

The Chimborazo Graveyard

The monuments nearrepparttar 142538 first refuge weren't for climbers without skill. The graveyard is a warning ofrepparttar 142539 unpredictability of all high places. Chimborazo is very high, it randomly shruggs off large rocks, and has weather that changes byrepparttar 142540 minute. While hiking torepparttar 142541 second refuge, we could hearrepparttar 142542 rocks and pieces of ice falling somewhere above.

El Refugio Edward Whymper is an unheated hut at 16,000 feet, named afterrepparttar 142543 English climber who first summittedrepparttar 142544 mountain. Okay, it isn't entirely unheated. There's a fireplace, and if somebody feels like carrying wood up to 5000 meters,repparttar 142545 fire may raiserepparttar 142546 temperature inrepparttar 142547 hut by 3 degrees.

We had hot mugs of "mate de coca" a tea of coca leaves, which are also used to make another product - one that's taken uprepparttar 142548 nose. We went hiking for twenty minutes - my acclimatization. We ate, and I slept for an hour before startingrepparttar 142549 ascent at eleven that night.

About Mount Chimborazo

Chimborazo is in Ecuador, nearrepparttar 142550 Equator (100 miles south). The elevation inrepparttar 142551 center ofrepparttar 142552 country, andrepparttar 142553 moderating effect ofrepparttar 142554 Humboldt Current alongrepparttar 142555 coast, givesrepparttar 142556 country near perfect weather. A bit hot inrepparttar 142557 lowlands, but spring-like in Quito (the capital) , with highs inrepparttar 142558 sixties to low seventies every day ofrepparttar 142559 year. Great weather almost everywhere--until you get high enough.

The summit of Chimborazo isrepparttar 142560 furthest point fromrepparttar 142561 center ofrepparttar 142562 Earth. Our planet bulges atrepparttar 142563 equator, making Mount Chimborazo even futher out there than Everest. It hasrepparttar 142564 distinction of beingrepparttar 142565 closest point torepparttar 142566 sun onrepparttar 142567 planet. Unfortunately, it's alsorepparttar 142568 coldest place in Ecuador.

Climbing Chimborazo

Paco, my guide, didn't care forrepparttar 142569 lightweight part of my mountain climbing adventure. He frowned at my sleeping bag, which packed up smaller than a football, and weighed a pound. My 13-ounce frameless backpack didn't impress him either. It did get below freezing inrepparttar 142570 hut, just as he said it would, but I stayed warm - as I said I would. No problems so far.

Unfortunately, Paco didn't speak any English, and I was just learning Spanish. Since our whole group consisted of him and me, we had some communication problems. I thought, for example, thatrepparttar 142571 $11 fee forrepparttar 142572 "night" (a few hours) inrepparttar 142573 hut was included inrepparttar 142574 $130 guide fee. He thought I was a mountain climber.

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