great barrier reef... one last time.

well, i am sure you all have guessed that having jim's parents out here meant that i got to see the beautiful great barrier reef one last time.  i know... tough life, huh?

even better, jim's parents wanted to see townsville so we decided to do our reef tour from there, which meant a whole new reef to explore!

i was going to dive the reef, but then was reminded that i had to fly the next day (to tasmania!) and you are not allowed to fly until 24 hours after a dive.  so, that left me plenty of time to take some great photos!!

jim's dad is not much of a water person to it was just anne and me on the tour.   we got up bright and early to meet the rest of the group at the marina.  soon thereafter we set off to sea on this baby...

we met some american friends on the boat who were visiting australia for a WWII memorial.  the man on the left was actually stationed in australia during WWII along with the man on the right's father and their other friend's father (not pictured here).  we had a two hour boat ride to the reef so it was great getting to know them and hearing their stories.

once at the reef, we jumped in to let the fun begin!

you can only see half of it, but there is an orange starfish on the top of this photo.

this is a picture of the top of the reef.  when the tide is down, most of this is barely covered with water.

this looked like coral straight out of the little mermaid.

i saw my very first puffer fish!  you can barely see him because he blends in, but he is in the bottom left side of the photo.

big clam!

this is our boat from the water... adrenalin dive was the name of the touring company in case anyone visits townsville and needs to know.

another big clam and i got a video of it as well.  you can see it kind of close up when i get close to it in the video.  look at the white that appears when it shrinks up.

this photo is the top of the reef as the tide is down... you can see the waves crashing over the top and the reef through the crystal clear water.


happy as a clam with the reef in the background!

we had a great time experiencing one of the natural wonders of the world.  the reef truly is amazing and i am so fortunate to get to experience it with so many loved ones!

i will leave you with this last video.  i am sorry about the shakiness.

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