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Sunday, 19 June 2016

THE BAY OF JERANTO - PROTECTED MARINE RESERVE?

Protected Marine Reserve?
Unwelcome intruder
This morning I took myself off to Jeranto which is conveniently near to where I live and a place I am very fond of.The first time I went there was in my late teens with my extended Italian family - we used to have our Easter picnics down there and very merry occasions they were too! In the summers to come I also sometimes went there for a swim , but in those days, before the Marine Reserve was created, it was mayhem, with boats of all shapes and sizes coming in and out of the bay from dawn til dusk. It was more like a busy highway, be it at sea, and you ran a real risk of having your legs chopped off by a propeller if you didn't watch your back. The beach was cram jam full and noisy and as the boats came in from Cantone to offload yet more people, it quickly became standing room only. The quality of the water suffered massively and there was a constant smell of fumes. 
David(s) and Goliath 
Luckily  all that stopped with the creation of the Punta Campanella Marine Reserve in 1997. Soon no motorized boats were allowed to enter, which meant that the only way to get there was on foot and that along a path with a steep descent on the way there, so of course a steep ascent on the way back. If you add to that a surface that is fairly rough and can be slippery, a beach that has no conveniences such as toilets, snack bars or even water , a lot of people  go there the first time but never come back. Good. Even so, it is surprising how many people do go (at weekends it is very crowded) and hats off to them for actually taking the trouble to walk. At least now there is a very good chance that they will be rewarded with crystal clear water and excellent snorkelling.
On to the next two
Last but not least
Well, back to the point of this blog. Not content with just strolling to Jeranto and back, I continued  my hike, taking the CAI300 path from Nerano up to Monte San Costanzo, and then  along the other side of the Bay of Jeranto. Looking down to admire the view, I saw a large boat enter the bay and very noisily drop anchor. From its flag I could see that it definitely wasn't the one  Marine Reserve boat which is allowed access. This was quickly followed by a couple of dinghies. A smaller boat had already been there for some time. I have to confess that all this annoyed me greatly and I was just wondering what to do when from behind the headland 3 kayaks appeared, quickly making their way towards the larger boat. They paddled up alongside, evidently got their message across, and then moved swiftly on to the dinghies before approaching the last boat. The dinghies upped anchor and left as quickly as they had come. I didn't stay to watch the departure of the others, but continued happily on my way.
So a very well done to the sea patrol! Keep up the good work!




 
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