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David Sturdevant's Posts
David has posted 2 reports and 6 photos.

Existing reports and photos: (Mouseover any camera icon for sample images. Click on any camera icon for all images)
 


Ascension Island Visit: 2014-8
2016-02-04 - My ship, the MV Houston, brought containerized supplies to Ascension Island in August 2014. We loaded the containers in Port Canaveral, Florida. The majority of the containers were from Patrick AFB nearby in Florida. The goods were mostly supplies for the US Air Force base on the island (items for their commissary and exchange, as well as individuals\' personal effects). There were some commercial containers as well. Ascension Island doesn\'t have a dock for cargo or ocean going ships. We anchored a mile or so off of Georgetown and motorized barges came alongside during daylight hours and our ship\'s cranes discharged two containers onto each barge. Ascension Island had experienced a large storm right before we arrived so there was a large ocean swell that made the discharge more challenging and dangerous. After receiving its quota of 2 boxes the barge would go to the shore where a shore-based crane would lift the boxes off the barge and put them on a truck to bring them to their destination. Later after the containers were emptied of their contents they were brought back to the ship for return to the US.


Ceara Visit: 2012-1
2012-02-06 - My wife and I were in Ceara for an 8 day/7night trip from Sao Paulo. We stayed at the Mareiro Hotel in the middle of the Beira Mar section of Fortaleza. The Mareiro isn't the most luxurious hotel in the area, but is comfortable and reasonably priced. The daily 'cafe de manha' (breakfast) buffet at the hotel is wonderful, with fresh fruits, juices, breads, omelettes, etc. The hotel is centrally located, within easy walking distance of many nice restaurants and shops. Every evening the beach sidewalk turns into a street-market type venue, with kiosks erected, offering locally made souvenirs such as T-shirts, wood carvings and other handi-crafts, leather goods, cashews,etc.
We took several day-trips via tour bus to other nearby locales, namely Cumbuco, Morro Branco and Canoa Quebrada. The high-light of many of the beach areas are (at extra cost) dune buggy rides over the sand dunes and along the beaches (local drivers are mandatory). Jangadas (flat-bottomed sailing boats used by the locals for fishing) rides are also offered for rental.
Cumbuco's buggy rides were the most thrilling and adventurous, with steep ascents and descents. In the middle of the ride we stopped at a "Ski-bunda" hill, where you slide down a steep hill, sitting on a waxed wooden board, hoping to glide all the way down the dune into a refreshing fresh-water lagoon. Falling off (until you get the hang of it) is half the fun. Cumbuco Beach is also well known by kite-boarders for its perfect combinaton of wind and wave conditons, in fact international tournaments are held here annually.
The Morro Branco area is known for its beautifully colored sand and an area known as "Labirinto das Falesias" and is frequently used as a picturesque setting in Brazilian novellas and movies. Erosion over the years has carved a fascinating curving path from the dunes down to the beach, through the colorful sand. Once you reach the beach you climb onto your buggy for a ride along the surf.
Canoa Quebrada is also another beautful beach area with interesting dunes and sand colors. Dune buggies also bring you down steep hills in this area.
The excursions are reasonably priced and the restaurants and refreshments offered are also surprisingly fairly priced.
Another area we wanted to visit is Jericoacoara but it was a 6 hr transit (each way) from Fortaleza. It has spectacular scenery as well (imagine Moab land formations located at the beach). It would be best to spend at least 3-4 days there so you don't waste (literally) half the day driving back and forth. Perhaps next time.
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