Cayman Aggressor IVCharter Date 6-13 Aug 2016
Water temp 84F Air Temp 80s
Crew: Capt Kiwi, Chef Kingsley, Inst Ty, Engineer Rodel, Super Stew Latoya
Guests: Bev & John, Gene, Tom, Gary & Michelle, Ellen & Roger, Kim, Darrel & Camille, Cherry, Lara, Wade, Jim & Nicole and Steve!
Saturday. The Cayman Aggressor IV, scrubbed, prepped and restocked, hung on her lines at the dock waiting for her next group of divers. 17 folks boarded in the afternoon (well 16, as Wade was causing havoc in airports up North). 90% of this week’s guests have cruised with us before, Gene and his divers from Amarillo Texas, the Wainwrights and the Morrisons, John and Bev, Gary and Michelle, Steve, Tom, Cherry, Jim and Nicole, the only ‘outsider’ this week was Lara, an ex resident of the Cayman Islands, so she felt at home straight away! We were sorry to hear that Vance and Janey couldn’t make the trip, we wish you a speedy recovery! Dinner on the sun deck was thoroughly enjoyed, followed by introductions and safety briefing. With Wade finally getting to the island, we settled in for the night, plenty of zzz’s ready for an action packed day tomorrow.
Sunday. First dive of the week was on the wreck of the Kittiwake, in 55’ of water. Everyone brushed off the cobwebs and had a great dive. This ‘Disney’ wreck is a delight for all divers, with easy access and plenty of light she is a playground. Under strict instructions for no current and short swim to the wreck, we did pretty well, divers could see the wreck underneath swim platform! Our next stop was the world famous Sting Ray City. Beautiful Stingrays swim right up to us looking for some wonderful tasting squid. It’s an experience not to be missed, and this week it was a very relaxed dive, with a couple of very well behaved rays! Babylon was our last dive site for day one, which featured lots of Black Coral between the pinnacle and wall, decorator crabs, Streams of creole wrasse like a river along the edge of the wall, a couple of bold Channel Crabs, the local green moray was swimming about, but the highlight for Cherry, Lara and Capt Kiwi was the Eagle Ray in the sand, who spooked at first, but came around to continue hunting all around us! Magic. A light dinner and the best ever Cay Lime Pie - thanks to Chef Kingsley from Jamaica, chill out time as we crossed to Little Cayman over night.
Monday. A stunning sunrise that Tom was photographing, welcomed us to Little Cayman! Most divers have experienced the magic of Bloody Bay Wall before. (That’s why they have returned). Randy’s Gazebo was our first dive site. Calm seas and excellent visibility as we jumped in. The welcoming committee was out in force to escort us around the reef-Nassau Groupers! Two chimneys, an Archway, the Wall and ledges, super friendly Groupers, an Eel lying with his tail out in the open, lobsters walking about and very happy divers. An incredible start to Little Cayman! The Meadows was next dive site of the day. At the Meadows we had close encounters with Sharks, Schooling Jacks, Turtles, Barracuda, Very Friendly Groupers even an inquisitive Green Moray Eel. The night dive produced all the usual’s including, Octopus, Huge Channel Crabs, Sleeping Turtles, Lobsters, Feeding Basket Stars and Corals!
Tuesday. The morning dive site was Lea Lea’s Lookout. We enjoyed Crevices that run from 30ft and out to the wall at 100ft! We had incredible visibility, crazy sponge formations, John discovered a huge channel crab inside a massive barrel sponge, cleaning stations, Lucy the grouper had us all falling in love with her. Everyone explored the ‘great room’ and lush soft corals. After a short ride we enjoyed world famous 3 Fathom Wall/The Mixing Bowl. Jim was so excited to get in, he forgot to attach his first stage to his tank! Surprised by Stingrays sleeping in the sand, unseen until the last minute! Yellow Headed Jaw fish and Sail Fin Blennies. A large green moray eel being cleaned, plenty of schooling Mahogany Snappers, Bermuda Chubs, Grunts combined with sunshine and a depth of 18’, the colours and life just blow you away. A very special Nurse Shark encounter in the sand made everyone’s day. Steak night aboard the CAIV and a cruise over to Cayman Brac for a Night Dive on the Wreck of the Capt. Keith Tibbetts, 356, Koni Class Russian Built Frigate!!! Hot Chocolate with Rum – Caribbean Style, hot towels and the hot tub under the stars, what a way to top off a tremendous day.
Wednesday. We kicked off the morning with a dive on the Wreck – guests were amazed to see where they had been diving the night before. Sunk in 1996 she is covered in sponges and a favourite place for Oscar our Goliath Grouper to inhabit. A couple of turtles meandering about, secretary blennies watching the world go by and plenty of time to explore inside the wreck. With the waves picking up we zipped back over to Little Cayman, Bus Stop. Always a favourite dive of the week, Swim Thru’s down sandy chutes out on to the wall, Sharks to greet us, Sailfin Blennies and Yellow Headed Jaw Fish played up to the cameras. Finishing up the day with some Dusk Diving action at Donna’s Delight, along with some more nurse shark encounters, turtles feeding, lettuce leaf slugs all over the show, and a dozen scrawled file fish all nibbling on the same sea fan! Beautiful. A late dinner and a few wines, chilled out conversation saw the night out, with most folks hitting the hay early as tomorrow we start at 6am!
Thursday. Some excitement through the night as a large squall came through, we got a free fresh water rinse and a blow dry! Waking up at 530am for a dawn dive on Joy’s Joy. A fabulous section of bloody bay, the main wall is fairly deep, but knarly and full or swim throughs, over hangs and ledges. Lobsters everywhere! A large turtle feeding on a sponge, glorious Pillar Coral in the shallows and of course more super friendly Groupers. With conditions deteriorating on Bloody Bay, we tucked in to Jackson Bight for the last two dives. Back to the Meadows and Sarahs’s Set. An Eagle Ray to start the dive, a couple of reef sharks on the wall, schooling jacks and loads of cleaning stations, with Grouper of all types being cleaned, Lara even got a facial from a cleaner Shrimp! All too soon is was time to board the boat and settle in for the trip back to Grand Cayman..
Friday. Lightening and Thunder was our sunrise this morning! Spectacular! After a hearty breakfast of Waffles Eggs and Sausages we splashed in on Round Rock/Trinity Caves. No current, clear water a very peaceful dive exporing the outer edge of the wall and winding through the maze of caves. Spotted Lobster everywhere, a free swimming moray eel, silversides, pairs of file fish, drum fish and Sharp Nosed Puffer Fish everywhere! As we returned to the boat an eagle ray, hunting in the sand! Great way to finish the dive. Last but not least today is Devil’s Grotto. A labyrinth of tunnels under the reef in only 40ft of water. Tarpon hanging in spaces, small pockets of silversides, and 17 divers delighting in the playground of the Grotto!
It has been a great week of diving, fun underwater and topside! Congrats to everyone for a safe week and to Camille for 50 dives, Steve for 100 dives, Wade for 150 dives and Roger for 200 dives! We had ten Iron Divers this week too! Fantastic photos and video for everyone to edit once they get home. Come back and see us again soon.
Until next time… Safe Diving. Cayman Aggressor IV Crew