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    • Location Bellingham, WA
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      I signed up for the Extreme Getaway Package (includes Castaway Ray’s Stingray Adventure, float/tube + snorkel equipment rentals for the day, and a one hour bike rental). I signed my mom up for just the Stingray Adventure at the same time as mine.


      We found the Stingray portion to be pretty cool. Once the group is assembled in the hut, a cast member gives you an overview of the excursion, some background info on the Rays, and tells you how to hold the food for them to eat. We learned that of the 70-ish Rays in the Lagoon, there’s only one male. The largest female is Megatron, and she weighs about 120 lbs and measures 4.5 feet. The rays also have their barbs trimmed, so no worries about getting stung! They are well trained to come up to eat off their Mickey plates. The feeding part only lasts about 10-15 minutes. The rays remind me of my cats, in that they like to wind around your feet! We were surprised at how soft their “wings” are. After the feeding part, you’re allowed to snorkel in the lagoon with the rays for the remaining time. I didn’t see a whole lot with that part.


      Next, I picked up my inner tube rental and went out into the swimming area to float for a bit. Big failure. I floated out a little too far and then they started to pull in the buoys to make the area smaller. It’s not easy to direct yourself on an inner tube, so I flopped off and awkwardly swam back, dragging my tube. No more of that, thanks.


      Then I picked up my snorkel gear and gave that a try. I learned from the now closed Shark Reef at Typhoon Lagoon (WDW) that I’m not a particularly good snorkeler - I never had a great experience there. With this, I appreciated the buoyancy vest. However, snorkel mouthpieces never seem to fit me well. It’s hard for me to bite them properly and this mask ended up rubbing on my gums to the point of soreness. I completely missed the “trails” and the cool underwater statues and Nautilus shipwreck. Perhaps I’ll try this again next year.


      I did not end up using the bike rental but still felt this was a good investment. Next time I think I would just do the “Getaway Package” (all the rentals without the stingrays) and use my time on the island more wisely.
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