Category: Eco-Adventures


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www.bluewaterventures.org

Imagine a huge egg cracked over an indigo blue fry pan the size of a trampoline and you have found Phacellophora camtschatica, the egg yolk sea jelly! A savory meal for the oddly shaped Mola Mola sunfish, other gelationous creatures and sea turtles, this fascintating sea jelly resides in Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. While out looking for humpback whales this morning by kayak, we paddled by numerous gelantionous species such as Chrysaora colorata, formerly Pelagia colorata and commonly known as the Purple sea jelly.

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Acting like a submerged spider web, the egg yolk sea jelly’s  convoluted tangle of tentacles serves to snare its prey.
Join Blue Water Ventures through-out the year as we kayak in the Elkhorn Slough and beyond. www.bluewaterventures.org

www.bluewaterventures.org

Our Bioluminescence paddle last night in Elkhorn Slough was super cool! The water glowed with dinoflagellates, a single cell bioluminescent protist, a grouping of species that may have some animal as well as plant like characteristics. Some dinoflagellates are responsible for red tide as seen in the video below while others such as zooxanthellae feed their coral host through photosynthesis.

Our next Bioluminescence Paddle is September 28th. Join us! Details at our blue water ventures website atwww.bluewaterventures.org

Hope to Glow with you!

Kim Powell, MRPA
Owner, Operator &Naturalist
Blue Water Ventures
phone & fax: 831-459-8548
http://www.bluewaterventures.org
email: bluewaterventuressc@gmail.com

www.bluewaterventures.org

There are those teachable moments be it in a traditional classroom or in an outdoor setting, that both student and teacher will never forget. On the final day of Coastal Kayak Explorer’s Camp we shared one of those moments.

Each summer Blue Water Ventures  based in Santa Cruz, CA  offers a variety of marine science camps. Kim Powell, owner of Blue Water Ventures leads our summer camps.  Kim has been conducting wilderness expeditions for students since 1985. She is a certified sea kayaking instructor through the American Canoe Association and Wilderness First Responder.  Kim loves sharing her knowledge of the marine world through a fun and informative approach. She has been the Director of Marine Science Camps in several  Caribbean locations in addition to Central California.

Here we go down under in Search of Sea Creatures.

www.bluewaterventures.org
Join Blue Water Ventures every february in Baja  as we explore the underwater world of  gray whales and other marine wonders.  We’ll seek eye to eye encounters with California gray whales, snorkel with sea lions and offer an opportunity to swim with the world’s largest fish, the whale shark.

 

For centuries, California gray whales  have traveled 10,000 miles round trip between their summer feeding grounds in Alaska and their winter breeding/calving grounds in the Pacific lagoons of Baja. Traveling in small skiffs into Magdalena Bay, we will wait for the whales to approach us. Close encounters are a common occurrence and quite thrilling. Naturalist-led beach hikes and kayaking excursions through the mangroves of Magdalena Bay will also be offered. In the ruggedly beautiful Espiritu Santos Island in the Sea of Cortez we will kayak, snorkel, fish, hike and relax from our dramatically scenic beach camp. At both sites, we have the comfort and ease of boat supported base camps.


www.bluewaterventures.org
As I pack up for our upcoming Baja Adventure, I reflect upon what an amazing year we had in 2011. There were so many outstanding highlights some captured in these photos. I have led trips to Caribbean Reefs for decades and was extreme tidepooling as a kid long before I coined the term. What fuels my soul are the people who join my Blue Water adventures.

Taking 10 year olds snorkeling with eye level views of sea otters or plunging into a Sierra stream is pure bliss, medicine for the soul. I’ve shared Elkhorn Slough with wonderful families who really care about the ecological wonders of one of California’s last wetlands.

My trips for women are more like adventures with great friends. I feel so lucky to have an amazing following of women, many who return for every adventure I throw their way. We have spent a day underground kayaking below the Belizean rain forest, snorkeled at night with bioluminescence draped over the reef, sailed the blue and thrown ourselves off granite rocks in the Sierras. Its been an unforgettable year of wildlife encounters……baby manatees, massive whale sharks, gray whales and tiny frogfish, all so awesome in their own right. Kayaking among the Humpback Whales of Santa Cruz last fall was a lifetime high point.

Funniest trip moment? Dr Ruth finding herself trapped in a broken elevator with a keg of beer, Florida Springs trip. The Ocala firefighters were on it!

I am faced with some personal challenges as I care for Mama Bear and juggle time spent with her and travel. My trips are healing during this challenging journey. I treasure each day I have with Bear. Having her in my life is truly a gift. On my Blue Water adventures, I am rejuvenated by sharing the wonders of the world with those who follow.

In 2011, I loss a dear friend, Jim Bitler who I dedicate this year to. Jim was one of the greatest naturalist and historians of modern times. Jim was an inspiration, friend and devoted partner who enriched my life and countless others.

I thank my Blue Water Ventures community for these memories and lessons I’ve learned from each of you along the way.

May the Wild-Life be with us in 2012!

Kim Powell, MRPA
Owner, Operator & Naturalist
Blue Water Ventures
phone & fax: 831-459-8548
www.bluewaterventures.org
email: bluewaterventures@sbcglobal.net
108 Mason St., Santa Cruz, CA 95060