Turks & Caicos Aggressor II
24 Oct 2015
Air Temperature: 85°F
Water Temperature: 84°F
Visibility: 50 - 100 feet
Recommended Exposure Suit: Skin to 3mil Shorty
Captain: MARC POVEY
Video Pro: MATT CRAWFORD
Chef: AILSA KELLY
Photo Pro: TROY SANDY
Instructor: GRANT PATTEN
GUESTS: Lise, Grafe & Michelle, Steve & Cindy, Lynn & Bob, Meghan
Sunday: Boat Cove - West Caicos
Monday: Brandywine & Magic Mushroom - West Caicos
Tuesday: Half Mile & G-Spot - French Cay
Wednesday: Rock N Rolla - French Cay
Thursday: Gullies & Spanish Anchor - West Caicos
Friday: Elephant Ear Canyon - West Caicos
Saturday afternoon rolled around as all the guests started showing up to Turtle Cove Marina. We couldnt wait to start the charter with our amazing 8 guests this week. It was going to be a special week, the weather looked amazing, the guests were all excited, and it was Halloween week! Due to tides, we stayed moored up in the marina until Sunday Morning, but it allowed us to have a beautiful a Pork Tenderloin dinner, made by the amazing Chef Ailsa, up on the sun deck. As our passengers started settling into their private yacht for the week, they opened a few beers and bottles of wine and began telling stories of past dive adventures.
Early Sunday morning, we pulled out of the marina and took off for West Caicos. After a couple hours of driving, we arrived at Boat Cove. This is one of the crews favorite spots to dive here. There is a large sandy area for the guests to brush off the buoyancy skills then off to am among sheer wall that drops to 110 feet and levels off before dropping to thousands of feet deep! As we were tying up, the crew saw turtles coming up for air and sharks swimming around. We could not have hoped for a better first site for this weeks charter!! Once everyone was underwater and all the weights figured out, we headed out to the wall swimming past massive coral heads of brain and pillar corals that were swarming with all sorts of fish. At the wall, everyone was stunned by the flowing soft corals and large reef sharks swimming around. As we made our way down the wall, we were greeted by a nice hawksbill turtle. He swam with us for a while before deciding that he wanted to explore the deeper parts of the wall. After returning to the boat from an amazing first dive, everyone wanted to stay here for the rest of the day. That made for a really relaxing day of diving and eating, and a few naps from the guests.
Monday morning came around and we convinced everyone there were more sites than just Boat Cove, so we moved over to a site called Brandywine. Brandywine is a really nice site with similar topography to Boat Cove. There are large coral heads right under the boat and a very pretty wall with several deep channels cut into it. Our turtle friend form Boat cove must have followed us because on the way down, he swung by to say hi before racing off into the blue abyss over the wall. Again, everyone was escorted by a couple reef sharks who wanted to make sure no one got lost. Once back to the boat after the second dive, as people were eating another amazing lunch made by Ailsa, we moved over to Magic Mushroom. Again, this site has nice large coral heads interspersed throughout the sand on the top of the wall with a very sheer wall down to about 150 before sloping off into the deep. The key feature to this site is a very large coral head, about 7 feet tall and 5 feet wide, with a huge crack down one side. The is know as lobster tower and is usually full of lobster. This day was no different with about 7 lobsters in the crack and countless more hidden in holes and crevices around the tower. Everyone loved exploring this site over the two afternoon dives and night dive. Troy brought out the Blacklight night lights for the first of many florescent light dives. These are amazing because they make the coral glow!!
Tuesday started before the sun woke up as we cast off from West Caicos and headed off to French Cay for a couple days of diving out there. As we pulled up to Half Mile, we could tell this would be an amazing couple days of diving due to the crystal clear blue water that greeted us. This site has a lot of hard pan with loads of soft corals leading over to the wall. French cay never disappoints with the sharks and rays. Right from the start, there were 4 sharks swimming around with more to be seen at the wall. Out at the wall, people also ran into several rays and a couple free swimming green morays. Some nurse sharks were even seen taking a nap under some coral. After lunch, we moved over to G-Spot at French Cay. This site is awesome with the sharp bend in the wall causing a vortex of nutrients that draw animals of all sizes here to feed. Under the boat, 5 sharks meandered around with a couple southern stingrays gliding over the sand. Out at the wall, multiple small spotted morays were seen and one very large green moray. All the sponges were covered in the smallest nudibranchs and crabs. All the nurse sharks here are so playful, they will swim right next to you and help you spot out fish. The little ones love to follow people and play hide and seek around coral heads. The night dive did not disappoint with even more sharks out playing and loads of stingrays hunting in the sand.
Wednesday morning, we moved over to Rock N Rolla at French Cay. This site is rumored to be the favorite site of all the major rock legends! We started the morning off with two amazing dives. Because this site is so close to G-Spot, we got to swim with the playful nurse sharks all day!! This site has large rock formations on top of the wall and then long channels that lead to the reef. This wall is pretty shear with amazing coral growth all over it and tons of crevices for all the reef critters to hang out in. After two amazing morning dives, we decided to try something new and do a drift dive along the wall of G-Spot and Rock N Rolla. Captain Mark dropped everyone off about a mile up the wall and we all got to drift down the wall and see way more than you could every see on a normal dive. People encountered a very large and friendly free swimming green moray, spotted eagle rays, reef and nurse sharks, atlantic spadefish and a few turtles on the dive. After the drift, everyone wanted to dive Rock N Rolla again so we decided to stay there for the night. Night dives are never bad in French Cay and this was no different. A total of 8 different reef sharks, 4 nurse sharks and countless rays were out feeding and hunting. Several octopus were seen and a couple reef squid swam past.
Thursday we had to start heading back to port so we took off for West Caicos. Once there, we pulled up to Gullies. This site is aptly named for all the gullies and canyons in the wall. The wall is amazing here, as are all the walls in the Turks and Caicos, with very large sea fans and massive plate and brain corals all up and down the wall. Again, another eagle ray was seen, this was the trip for large eagle rays. We even got to witness it feeding in the reef!! The whole morning at Gullies, 5 sharks were swimming under the boat waiting to escort people off to the walls. More morays were seen swimming around the reefs and a few turtles popped by to say hi! After a great morning, we moved over to Spanish Anchor and people could not wait to jump in and see if there was any treasure near the fouled anchor! Down through the swim thru is a 200 year old anchor stuck on the wall, a perfect place for a picture!! After looking for treasure, none was found unfortunately, so we continued on the wall for the last afternoon dives of the trip. This was the trip for eagle rays as another one was seen feeding with a shark following it. A few divers went in for the last night dive and saw with more sharks and rays. The lucky few that went in reluctantly came back to the boat after the amazing dive and couldnt wait to get back in tomorrow for the last couple dives.
Friday morning we moved over to Elephant Ear Canyon. The site is stunning, under the boat is sand with tons of garden eels and all sorts of little nudibranchs and seahorses. The sand runs right up to the top of the wall then it drops off into the blue. There are amazing slopes that look like ski slopes descending off into the deep. No eagle rays were seen but several morays were found in their holes and a couple sharks darted past. Two dives were completed and all the divers jumped back on the boat ready to watch the amazing video from the week. After a short drive back to port, bags were packed and gear put away in preparation for the Wine and Cheese party on the top deck. After the party, everyone was free to explore the island and visit the local watering holes. We are sad to see our guests leave but hope to see them all again soon!!