Belize Aggressor IV Captains Log Jan 9-16 2016
Air Temp: Low 80s F
Water Temp: 80 F
Vis: 80-100 Ft
Crew: Captain Jay, 2nd Captain Alex, 1st Mate John, Instructor Aubri, Stewardess Elia, Chefs Jeanne and Carlos
Guests: Sergey, Olga, Vladimir, Anna, Andrei, Elena, Aleksei, Oxana, Tatianna, Alexey, Andrian, Victor, Aleksandr, Aleksandr, Aleksandr, Andrey, Igor, Olga.
Dive Sites Visited:
Sunday: Black Beauty, Front Porch
Monday: Grand Bogue, Johnnys Wrench
Tuesday: Tarpon Caves, Silver Cave
Wednesday: The Great Blue Hole, Half Moon Cay Wall
Thursday: Chain Wall, Long Cay Ridge, Long Cay Wall
Friday: Sandy Slope
Our adventures began in earnest Sunday morning at Black Beauty on the South end of Turneffe Island. The site gets its name from the numerous elegant black corals that line the reef crest before it drops off into the abyss. The corals made an excellent backdrop for the groups introduction to diving Belize waters. Many lobsters were spotted in the crevices amongst the coral, and on the second dive some of the group were lucky enough to spot two spotted eagle rays out in the blue water. After lunch, the boat shifted up the coast to Front Porch, where the group enjoyed their first night dive of the trip. Several spotted toadfish made an appearance, and their guttural grunts entertained us throughout the dive.
Monday was spent exploring more of the East Coast of Turneffe Island. We visited both Grand Bogue and Johnnys Wrench. At both sites divers were treated to swarms of colorful reef fish and eels hiding out in the nooks and crannies. That afternoon we also sighted our first nurse shark of the trip. After dinner, we made our crossing out to Lighthouse Reef, the furthest offshore of the sites we visit.
We started our day at a fascinating site named Tarpon Caves, a spot known for the spectacular canyons and swim throughs in the crest of the wall. The marine life of site was equally spectacular; we saw numerous nassau groupers, tarpon, southern stingrays, and a lone reef shark. Following another delicious lunch from the galley, we moved to Silver Cave, where we saw a whopping five spotted eagle rays swimming together. On their return from the dive, the happy divers were greeted by a friendly hawksbill turtle lounging at the surface near the boat.
For the morning we decided that the weather looked just right, so we made our way through the reef to the Great Blue Hole. There, our group was awed by the size of this collapsed cave, and the sheer drop as the walls descend into the abyss. Swimming amidst the stalactites deep in the blue hole made for quite a memorable dive, and many in the group would have been happy to spend the rest of the week exploring the rock formations. We then made a brief shore excursion to Half Moon Cay, where everyone had a chance to stretch their legs a little and enjoy a close-up look at the islands seabird population. The afternoon was spent enjoying the numerous nooks and crannies of beautiful Half Moon Cay Wall, where we saw numerous garden eels, southern stingrays, and several very friendly tarpon.
The day started with quite a surprise; overnight, hundreds of dragonflies had been blown past by a squall and decided to make their home onboard. Today we managed to squeeze in three dive sites instead of normal two. We saw the Chain Wall, Long Cay Ridge, and Long Cay Wall. All excellent sites, where we were entertained by a wild assortment of lobsters, crabs, shrimp, and many, many friendly fishes. After dinner, we made the short and uneventful crossing back to Turneffe Island.
For our last day of diving, we woke up a little early to make time for the last two dives. We explored Sandy Slope, a site with a nice ski slope of sand that cuts down through the wall down to 100 and beyond. The slopes around the site were full of giant barrel sponges, lobsters, and spotted morays. After the last dive, we made our return to Belize City, where our guests went off for an excursion to explore some local Mayan ruins. The evening, we wrapped up another wonderful week of diving with a party on the sun deck, where we crowned our two new Iron Divers, Sergey and Andrei.
Thanks to all for a great week!