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Cayman Aggressor IV :

 

Log Date: Saturday, Apr 09, 2016
Entry By: Cayman Aggressor Crew







 


Cayman Aggressor IV

Charter Date: 9–16 April 2016

Weather:     Air Temp 80’s, Water Temp 81F

 

Saturday. Get ready for another week of fun in the sun and diving the Cayman Islands! Lots of familiar faces this week, Bernice and Ross and a blast from the past Sherri, Ron and Kevin! Welcome back and a warm welcome to all of our new faces from Canada and the US. Everyone was aboard and diving into the drinks cooler on the sundeck well before dinner. So ‘let loose the lines’ let’s get out of here and leave this concrete behind. Dinner and a Welcome/Safety briefing before a relaxing night, catching up, getting to know each other over a few drinks.

Sunday. First dive of the week on the Doc Poulson. Very picturesque small cable laying vessel right underneath the boat, 50ft sitting on the sand. A garden of soft corals adorning the wreck, bright yellow sponges, a few snapper and jacks hanging around along with cleaning stations and sleeping basket stars. Now the cobwebs have been washed away, it’s time for the big wreck – the Kittiwake. All divers had a ball exploring the large submarine support vessel sunk 5 years ago. A school of silversides inside the wreck were a nice surprise and a decorator crab with a very ornate yellow sponge hat was trying hard to be inconspicuous in the crew mess. From there we hit up the Oro Verde for a late afternoon dive and a night dive. Octopus! Giant Parrotfish, an eel, lobsters and shenanigans on the bicycles at 50ft. A full day – divers were rewarded with a Bailey’s Hot Chocolate and Hot Towels!

Monday. The day began as most do with a splendid sunrise and the smell of bacon in the air, another day in paradise. The morning was spent exploring the ins and outs of Big Tunnels, stunning sponge and coral life amongst a labyrinth of swim throughs, followed by a photo shoot with several turtles on their way to breakfast. In the afternoon we headed over to Neptune’s Wall for one dive. A free swimming moray eel swam along with us for a good 10mins, then decided we were too slow, another turtle and plenty of cleaning stations and macro city.   The last two dives were at Angel Fish Reef… or maybe it should be called Nurse Shark Central! A fair bit of friendly nurse shark loving took place – a unique experience. Also spotted were juvenile spotted drums, spotted moray eels, and large schools of horse eyed jacks, tarpon, and barracudas. After the sun went down almost everyone jumped in for a night dive with the octopuses and Sawyer the friendly nurse shark. Upon return, a second serving of crème brulee, a cocktail, and some Cards Against Humanity was called for to close the day.

Tuesday. One of Ross’s favourite sites this morning, Round Rock/Trinity Caves. A network of ‘caves’ and canyons leading out to the famous West Bay Wall. A couple of turtles on the reef, file fish and reef life in full swing.   World Class Bonnies Arch was our quick stop before heading North. Breathtaking, this stunning Archway covered in corals, sponges and colour! The shallow reef a garden of purple sea fans, yellow sponges and soft corals. Schools of bright yellow grunts gathered in the sunlight and a large lobster retreated into his hole. Bill and Alex were lucky enough to witness a Green Moray try to take a bite out of a Puffer Fish…. Consequently the puffer fish puffed up and the Moray went on his way!!    Finally we get to head North and drop anchor at Sting Ray City!!! A truly Cayman experience in only 12ft of water. Half a dozen rays of various sizes came winging in to sample our tasty snacks. Alex came away with a few hickies and everyone came away with fantastic photos and video. Congratulations to Tonia for clocking her 100th Dive today! It must be happy hour, as we pick up the anchor and make the crossing to Little Cayman.

Wednesday.   Happy Birthday Chris, who also celebrated his 100th Dive this morning! Welcome to Little Cayman, Bloody Bay Wall. First dives are on Randy’s Gazebo. The Nassau Grouper welcoming committee were out in full force as divers dropped in the Chimney, explored the Gazebo and marveled at the healthy and abundant marine world.   Turtles everywhere, groupers, jacks, so much colour in 23ft at the top of the wall, peering off into the never ending deep blue.   One of Sherri’s top ten dive sites in the world was next – Meadows. With a Mini Wall and a Main Wall, tunnels underneath the whole thing – some misleading, but others popping you out at 90ft in the blue. More large groupers to guide us around and a couple of Caribbean Reef Sharks made an appearance, puffer fish, angel fish, cleaning stations, giant lobsters and stingrays everywhere. A special Dusk Dive on Marilyn’s Cut.   Located back on Bloody Bay Wall, with a cut in the wall with a cavern to check out. This dive was electric, with action all over the place.   Boys chasing the girls, fighting, frolicking, feeding, changing colour.   There was no need to head down the wall as the top edge was the hot spot. Smiling faces getting back on board for a delicious Salmon and Pasta dinner, Tiramisu for dessert!  

Thursday. We set out for an ambitious day of diving on our last day in Little Cayman- four dives, four dive sites. First splash was at Nancy’s Cup of Tea for a pre-breakfast dive with the sharks. Two reef sharks decided to join us and remained close by for the entirety of the dive. Next stop, Bus Stop! A relaxing dive with turtles and another shark sighting. After everyone was satisfied with their fill of sharks we headed over to Three Fathom Wall for some macro action with sail fin blennies and yellow headed jaw fish before lunch. As tradition goes on the Cayman Aggressor, we headed to The Great Wall to visit our dear friend Freddy the friendly groper for our final dive on Little Cayman. After an epic day of diving guests settled in for the crossing back with laptops and camera equipment scattered about, all furiously editing and swapping photos for the slideshow presentation. All of the hard work paid off and the slideshow was a hit with everyone. We also enjoyed watching the movie of the week that Niall prepared before guests headed off to play games, watch movies, or go to bed.

Friday. After a smooth crossing back we awoke, once again, at Grand Cayman to a little sight called Eagle Ray Rock. While we didn’t spot any eagle rays cruising by this time, there was an abundance of the mesmerizing spotted drum fish in all stages of development. For the final dive, divers explored the swiss cheese topography of The Devil’s Grotto. Stingrays, tarpon, and various types of crab and shrimp were also meandering around the caves and swim throughs, luckily they were polite enough to share the lanes of traffic with us for a time. Back at the dock guests busily prepared their gear for travel and explored George Town for some souvenirs before heading back to the boat for a cocktail party to celebrate the week and receive some coveted awards.

Saturday. Say it isn’t so! The week flew by in the blink of an eye and everyone’s bags were all out and ready to go by 8:00am. Some would continue on for a few more days of holiday and some headed straight home but not without saying fond farewells to new and old friends. Until the next time, thank you to all of our guests for a wonderful week of diving!

Capt and Crew

Cayman Aggressor IV