White Sand, seduction waving palm trees, and clear expanse of sea water penetrates the surface. All three are the main elements that spoil quickly when approaching the island Pasumpahan. This tiny island is included in the Banana River Village, District Bungus Gulf of mourning, the city of Padang, West Sumatra.
When the land border is visible, the more spectacular scenery. Such as sea surface is divided into three. Nodes on the edge of the colors, the green in front, and blue on the more toward the center.
The depth of the ocean waters around the island became the cause of the color difference. Clearly visible white sand in the bottom part of the nodes. Coral reefs are dying clearly visible fracture around a weathered wooden dock.
Small fish congregate in large groups around the pier. Dock that has a pole of coconut logs. Foundation beams are made of dull.
Some of the pier collapsed. Titiannya bridge also collapsed here and there. A split palm tree trunks laid off as his bride.
It makes the dock very risky to use. Not far from the pier, there is a small stretch of mangrove forest. Small fish are clustered in large quantities to create a desire to swim under the dock was unbearable. It was like fighting the fish captured.
Single-engine boat carrying Compass finally landed on the beach, hit the soft coral slowly. Arriving on the mainland a log cabin with a warm welcome.
On the north wall there is a four-room building that is no longer maintained. At the back there is a building with two additional rooms and a separate room that is also neglected.
While there are sunken in a pit surrounded by a makeshift tarpaulin cover. Bathing and washing clothes bersumberkan water is brackish.
Variety of marine life
However, the biggest temptation when it is swimming around the island Pasumpahan covering approximately 5 hectares. It took about two hours to swim the distance of about 2 kilometers to circumnavigate the island from the east to the north and back again to the original point.
However, with a tranquil stream and the diverse marine life, fatigue replaced. Rather strong ocean waves and swim against the track only found on the west side of the island overlooking the ocean.
Along the way, sometimes we can dive for a few seconds by holding their breath. Hunt for red lionfish (Pterois volitans), sea cucumbers, or cuttlefish (Sepia sp) for the image perpetuated. However, not for two turtle that looks to the west. Both are too fast to swim toward the open sea and can not be pursued in one breath.
The diversity of coral reefs, even though most of them are dead, seen growing on the south side of the island. The location of various colonies that are not too deep, 2 meters to 3 meters, is relatively easier for visitors to record it.
Can spend the night
Overnight on the island Pasumbahan also not a problem. In fact, when Compass been to this location, it feels good because it coincides with the momentum supermoon, when the moon is at its closest to Earth (perigee). When the moon look 14 percent bigger and 30 percent brighter than when there is at the farthest point (apogee). That night land and sea surfaces appear bright moonlit.
Held a tent or stay in a warm log cabin, both are good choices. If you bring a sleeping bag, lie down until my eyes closed on the dock or on the sand beach is also not a bad choice. However, the temptation remains the largest on the island is a dive Pasumpahan. Moreover, the characteristics of the current is relatively quiet.
Level of depth that can be tested also varied. Divers Minang Bahari Foundation, Armed, say, in addition to relatively close to the city of Padang, which flows quietly become a major advantage for novice divers practice at that location.
However, divers should be prepared to remain with the possibility of decompression (decompression sickness). Moreover, when diver panic attack as opposed to the main requirement before dropping to below sea level, which is peace.
Decompression due to the dissolved nitrogen levels while diving form bubbles and clog the blood and nervous system. This corresponds to the difference in pressure when the surface water and subsurface water.
In the conditions above the water surface, the pressure is taken into the body of an atmosphere. Each multiple of 10 meters below the water surface there is the addition of a pressure of 1 atmosphere.
When a diver rises too quickly from a certain depth, the nitrogen bubbles that have not been neutralized bodies. At this time decompression can occur. Symptoms resemble those of a stroke and severe levels may lead to paralysis and even death.
To get to the surface should be done slowly. Stop at a certain depth before actually appear on the surface is also important to note. It is necessary to provide an opportunity for the body to neutralize the nitrogen levels in the blood.
Coral reefs damaged
Pasumpahan Island, divers must also be prepared with a view of coral reefs are damaged and covered with a layer of sediment. Deposition of domestic waste are also relatively much visible at a depth of 18 meters.
Pasumpahan island of customary rights held by residents in the Banana River. Indigenous elders Banana River Sasti Karman Gamu Datuk Rajo was in charge of managing the island.
He said that last year the island tend to be devoid of tourist visits. Therefore, the island is leased for 30 years since the 2004's as abandoned.
"A tenant died so a bit neglected. By his heirs, the island is authorized to me for management. However, to this day I have not found an interested investor, "he said.
In fact, before the island was visited by foreign tourists. They are usually a boat on the island, in addition to the Mentawai Islands District.
Massive destruction of coral reefs on the island, according to Sasti, due to various things. "Can the act of diving and fishing are taking poison and destroy coral reefs. Therefore, I ask that no security is also of the apparatus due to sea damage can be done in various ways, "he said.
For tourists who want to visit the island Pasumpahan, can call in advance at Sasti Sub Banana River. The distance is about 30 kilometers from the center of the city of Padang via the main road to the South Coastal District.
In the Banana River, visitors can rent a boat to the island Pasumpahan within about 2 miles. "The price of rent is Rp 75,000 with a capacity of 10 people," said Sasti.
If you already know and want to direct that leads Sasti Pasumpahan Island, from the center of the city of Padang can rent a fishing boat in Gulf Port Bayur. Of course the more expensive rents and shipping up to 1.5 hours.
Founder of travel agencies and training Sumatra And Beyond, Sincere Ridwan said Pasumpahan Island should be developed as a natural tourism area. However, it must be accompanied by the empowerment of local communities, the Banana River Village residents, the city of Padang. "Also to be done to protect the culture," said Ridwan is also founder of the Green Tourism Institute.