chilling feet

chilling feet

Monday, August 1, 2016

Guam: Marbo Cave and Cliffs and Tarague Point

(Marbo Cave.  Our second caving experience in Guam and the second one that has a nice pool to swim in)

****If you have already read this or have not, I've had to make some corrections for having spelled Andersen Air Force base incorrectly a few times in the original post.  It has now been changed to the correct spelling*****

In our last post I mentioned a hike we had done and eluded to it perhaps not running quite as smoothly as it could have gone.  

Well it all started splendidly.  We were supposed to go hiking with a couple from Sarah's work but they had to back out due to prior obligations.  Upon a few searches online we decided on Marbo Cave and Cliffs for a hike.  There was plenty of information online about how to get there and what to do once there.  

One thing we have learned quickly from others is that the trails here are not marked super well and people getting lost and needing rescued is pretty common.  So information with pictures is helpful!
(When we got to the cave there was a decent group of folks already swimming in the crystal clear waters.  We checked it out and decided to head on down towards the beach and then come back)

It is a pretty happening cave and the main plus side for visitors is a road that is built within maybe 400 yards of the entrance.  Really not bad at all.  Then there are some steps and the structure seen in the picture that have been made for the cave to be more enjoyable.  

With all the activity and swimmers who were in there when we arrived we decided to head on down to the cliffs and the ocean before coming back to enjoy more of the cave.  After an easy walk we arrived upon this view below.
(There were some local fisherman trying their luck.  Seriously must be nice to fish at a gem like this on a daily basis)

Beautiful.  

I think I'm over using the flowery language but when one walks upon a scene like this what other words should be used?  We walked up and down the cliffs for a little bit and then decided of course that we needed to be closer to the water.  

After a short time we found a nice place where we could climb down to investigate.
(Sarah loved the way the waves would fill these little pools and create tiny waterfalls)

As seen in the picture above, the little pools formed by the waves make for a fun and seemingly private paradise to walk through while crabs and little tadpole looking fish clamor to get out of the way.  

We saw a few of these pools that get deep enough and are far enough from the crashing waves we could have just sat down and enjoyed a little salt whirlpool of sorts.  In hindsight we should have done just that.
(Wow. The waves would just lick at the rocks and the water still looks so pristine)

We did not sit in a little pool because we could see this "path" going around the distance rock corner. 

Keep that distant corner in your mind for reference and maybe be ready to scroll back to this pic.  

It really is quite enjoyable to walk along these pools and breathe in the fresh air.
(But before we head around that distant rock corner we had to stop for a picture.  We get a lot of nature and not enough of ourselves with the nature)

Well as we made our way for that distant corner, the pathway between the rocks and the ocean narrowed quite a bit, as you can see in the picture if you look back to it.  As we neared the corner, it seemed to call to both of us beckoning in a sweet voice, "Hey what's on the other side?"  

But the waves were coming up a little higher in this spot I commented to Sarah the sort of thing I say when we are out and about by ourselves, something like, "Honey you sure you want to do this part, it's looking a little crazy.  Those waves could get us at any moment."  

I always say things like this in the most manly voice as possible, knowing ahead of time there is not much Sarah backs down from and I do not want to seem the wimpy husband boy man.  

To be fair in these moments I tend to be over cautious and Sarah over adventurous.  Pushing past them has often led to greater experiences, though not always without Sarah giving me the sidelong look to imply, "You're silly husband."  

And everything was fine until one, what I am referring to as a rogue wave, wave decided to not break at our feet but a good foot above our heads!  It happened suddenly and without warning.

What a jerk wave!  It could have shouted, "Watch out you newbs!"  It was so fast and out of no where that neither of us had any clue it was coming until the wave was inches from our faces.  I turned to the extra sharp rock wall on my right and had only enough time to get to hand holds.  

BOOM!!

CRASH!!

SWIRLY CONFUSION!!

A POWERFUL PULLING FORCE!!

SOAKED!!

As the water tried to rip me out to sea I barely hold on and finally had time to think, "Oh crap, where's Sarah?"  

When my feet hit the ground again I turned to see her on the ground, at the edge of having been washed out with a wild look in her eyes, but clinging to the moss in the little pool we had been walking in moments before.  

Thank God!  Just before grabbing her and getting the mess out of there I looked at my hands because they were stinging quite uncontrollably.  Great. 

We then got back to safety before another wave decided to teach me another hard earned lesson.
(I should  have made Sarah do a close up as this just does not do it justice.  And it doesn't
show the chest and leg wound where the wave apparently picked me up, turned me side
ways and slammed me into the rocks before trying to take me out to sea.  No wonder
the hands took a beating as they twisted and turned on the rocks)

What can you do but laugh? 

We had been idiots and it could have cost us dearly.  While Sarah was almost washed out to sea, which could prove to be the way more dangerous of our two situations, she suffered much less from the deep cuts caused by the wave trying to rip me off of a super sharp rock face. 

At this point we passed up our opportunity to swim in the cave and we headed off to get bandaged up. We will go back!  But we will not repeat the same mistake and we will be more mindful of the rising tide.  Good-ness! (said in my best duck dynasty voice)
(Go Arlington!  Who wants to come run with the palm trees?)

I've been trying to get a few runs in while in Guam.  The goal seems to be to run at 4am or after sundown.  I rarely achieve either.  

Mostly I wanted to post these pics because I want the Arlington cross-country team to know I miss hanging out with them and making them run "fun" workouts.  I'll miss being around to watch the meets this Fall!
(One more to get a little bit of Guam in the shot)

Well, my hands are mostly healed now and I'm ready to be back on the rocks!  Just kidding.  

This past Saturday night we had the chance to go hangout with the two youngest Johnsons for the night so the adult Johnsons could attend a function - babysitting!!  And yes while little Wesley was a bit of a crazy man it's still fun to be around those two.  

The next morning we all got up, ate some breakfast, and headed out to see some of the landscape surrounding Andersen Air Force base where the Johnsons are stationed.  
(Heading down to check out a sweet overlook)

It was fun hiking with the kids.  Wesley especially will stop to look at every single thing he sees.

Bugs, rocks (to throw, flip, examine, carry), sticks, "tunnels" that lead off into the bushes (which looked more than terrifying but he kept asking to go down the tunnels).  

I think he might be worse than Sarah when it comes to pursuing dangerous leads and wanting to hike/crawl/run/jump off into the unknown.  
(The timer feature for the group pic)

Ok Wes you were right.  Not a bad overlook after all.  
(Just a little farther back and the shot will be perfect. Take one more big step backwards please!)

I climbed up to see this view just to the right of where our group shot was and thought the same thing you are right now.  

We have to go to there!  

I intend on going back with Wes n company to investigate what looked like a trail to me heading over and into the wild.
(Might need my machete for this hike)
(One more overlook before heading down to the beach to swim but this one is only about a twenty yard walk)

Tarague Point!  You're so good looking Tarague Point!  No Seinfeld fans, Tarague Point had not just sneezed, but I was overcome with having to proclaim its beauty.
(Wes took this shot and I'm glad he did.  That's pretty awesome)


Warning! Awesome beach and swimming pics below!  Keep going to see some more.
(Underwater photographer Sarah Baddorf at work)
(Just stick your hand in there.  It's safe.  I promise)

The beach was fun too!  We did some snorkeling, resting, crab looking, splashing, and more. If you're ever on Andersen Air Force Base check out this beach out!
(I am calling this one: PINK SHARK)
(Look at these goofballs!  Seriously good pic though)
(Till next time Guam)

So many more hikes to do.  

I promise, to the moms out there, we will be more careful.  

But I also promise to the Sarahs out there, we will be more adventurous.  

It is the dichotomy I am learning to live within being married to wonder such as my wife.  I fully expect one of you to write the post for us when our adventure does turn too far sideways.  Surely it will make for a good story right?  In the meantime, we plan on living for many more adventures. 

There are too many sites to be seen and things to do to be too silly this early in the great game. We shall take enough to care to probably live long enough to see more of it!