Log Date: Saturday, Oct 24, 2015
Entry By: Captain David Patterson
Carib Dancer Captains Log 24th - 31st October 2015
Air Temp. 75-80 F
Water Temp. 82-84 F
Exposure Suit - 3MM full Length/Shorty
Captain David Patterson
Dive Instructor Jason Shaddox
Dive Instructor Gabrielle Reuben
DM / Engineer Ramon Wong
Chef Patricia Larkin
Hiro, Cecile, Sarah, Stacey, David, Andre, Don, Chuck, Barbara, Magali, Sonja, Beth
Sunday – Blue Hole, Periwinkle, Lobster No Lobster
Monday – Crab Mountain, Hole In The Wall, Cave Rock
Tuesday – Cut n Run, Cobia Cage, Close Mon
Wednesday –U[ Jump the Devil, Dog Rocks, Madison Ave, Airplane Wreck
Thursday – Pillar Wall, Austin Smith, Jewfish Wall, Crab Reef
Friday – Blue Hole
Saturday October 24th
The crew of The Carib Dancer welcomed 12 guests aboard for a fun-filled actioned packed week of diving. Once everybody had arrived Chef Pat served up a scrumptious baked Salmon dinner which went down a treat with our weary travel-tired globe trotters.
Once everybody had settled into their staterooms and unpacked their dive equipment Captain David gave the welcome and safety briefing.
We stayed the night on our home dock at Elizabeth On Bay Marina due to the fact that one of our guests had lost a piece of luggage. With a plan set in place to retrieve the elusive baggage we hit the hay for a restful nights sleep.
Sunday October 25th
At around 6AM the engines rumbled into life and the crew of the Carib Dancer cast our dock lines and we motored out of the harbour toward the open ocean. The smell of freshly brewed coffee and Bacon wafted down the hallways and beckoned our eager underwater explorers to the Salon where they took in a sumptuous breakfast prepared by Chef Pat.
We cruised for around 1 hour and moored up to one of Nassaus most famous dive sites - The Blue Hole. Normally we would have crossed to the Exuma Islands but we decided to stay close to Naasau so we could make arrangements with the airlines to recover our lost bag.
Once Breakfast was over with we then commenced with our dive-deck briefing and before long we were hopping in to enjoy the first dive of the trip
The Blue Hole never disappoints - today was no exception. The rim of the Blue hole is laden with fish that populate the large coral heads that have become their home. Large schools of French Grunts hover motionless as our divers approach - Safety in numbers is their mantra.
Monday October 26th
We cranked up the engines at around 7AM and slipped through the narrow channel that separates the Exuma Sound and the Bank. Next up for us was Crab Mountain. Once breakfast was finished we rang the dive bell and delivered the briefing. Crab Mountain is a gorgeous wall dive that starts at around 40ft and slopes off into the abyss many of thousands of feet below. There is a nice plateau that maxes out at 100ft which gives our divers a great place to find Channel crabs and Arrowhead Crabs - both of which we found on this particular dive. We had the unique pleasure of observing the reef come to life as we did two dives here at Crab Mountain. On the first dive when the sun was low in the sky we saw lots of small stuff. We saw Trunkfish, Filefish and Blennies all going about their usual business. Our divers searched the shallows around the sea whips and sea fans for Nudibranchs and Flamingo tongues - the sea fans shone a fantastic purple against the azure blue backdrop of mother ocean.
Once the sun had risen higher in the sky the schooling fish came out to play. We saw Parrotfish pecking at the reef, we saw a couple of extremely curious Queen Triggerfish and Lobster peering out from under its ledge. Horse Eyed Jacks were sighted underneath the boat apparently enjoying the quiet hum of the Carib Dancers generators.
Tuesday October 27th
We began our days diving on the incredible Cut N Run. This interesting dive site features the wreck of an airplane and a huge ships anchor. The thinking is that back in the day the plane was filled with illegal substances and flown into the Bahamas where it rendezvoused with a waiting boat. The drugs were quickly transferred from plane to boat and from there they were more than likely shipped to other islands in the Bahamas or perhaps mainland USA. The dive itself is a great one. The wreck of the plane has created an artificial reef which many fish have populated. Wreckage is strewn across the immediate area within a few hundred yards of the main fuselage we saw the landing gear, pieces of the wings and aluminium plating - all of these parts are now home to Jawfish, Parrotfish and other reef critters.
On the night dive we saw various different types of shrimps, Pufferfish, Parrotfish and quite possibly the biggest Lobster ever to be sighted at Close Mon. This beast could feed a family of 6 and still have enough left over for seconds, we of course being avid divers do not condone eating the very lobsters that we come to see so we left him well alone and let him roam the sandy patches where he continued on his night time ritual of looking for food.
Once the night dive was finished we tied up at Lobster no Lobster where we the guests and crew grabbed some well earned sleep!
Wednesday October 28th
The crew of the Carib Dancer are up early to prepare the deck for the day of diving ahead. We decided to head outside into the Exuma sound and picked up Up Jump the Devil for our first dive. This majestic wall dive features a myriad of swim-throughs that start at around 40ft and slope down to around 90ft. Schooling Horse Eyed Jacks greet our divers as they enter the water. The Jacks tails were a fervent yellow against the milky blue backdrop of the Exuma Sound. As the divers enter the swim throughs they see Fairy Baslets zooming around the rooftops of the coral ledges they also see Caribbean Spiny Lobster with antenna outstretched in a show of bravado. Our divers exit out onto the wall and they see the floor dissapear from underneath them. This is a truly humbling sight. To see the sheer scale of the drop off is amazing. Many of our divers chose to hover in the blue to enjoy the relative tranquility and and vastness of the open ocean. We see Sharks out in the distance cruising by us looking for breakfast, we see a wonderful green sea turtle flap by us unconcerned at our presence. Atop the reef we see schooling fish in the hundreds whhich rounds off our dive very nicely indeed. Our divers ascended and showered off before enjoying another freshly baked snack. Next up for us was the ever popular Dog Rocks.
This amazing site has it all. Walls, swim throughs, shallows and a varied yet abundant marine life.Some of the sightings on Dog Rocks included barracuda, Sharks, Trumpetfish, Jacks, Grouper and Hamlets. The swim throughs on Dog Rocks are stuff of legend. If you like swim throughs then you are sure to enjoy Dog Rocks! As we had lunch we moved the boat to our next site Madison Avenue. Named after the posh shopping district in New York this fantastic dive site attracts the high rollers of a different kind….Fish of course!! Madison Avenue is a wonderful reef that has swim thoughs and ledges that we can find many different creatures. There is a cave system here that on this particular dive was absolutely teaming with silversides. The cave was a buzz with life. Outside the cave we see schooling grunts and snapper as well as many many barracuda. The resident southern atlantic stingray swims by our group too, we also see a free swimming moray eel trying to evade the attention of our divers.
Thursday October 29th
First up for us today was the magnificent Pillar Wall. This wonderful wall site features huge coral pinnacles that rise up from the abyss thousands of feet below. Our group saw a Caribbean Reef Shark cruising in the blue. They also saw a Porcupine fish, and schooling mackerel which pleased our group no end. A huge Barracuda kept a beady eye on our divers as they traversed their way back to the yacht. The wreck of the Austin Smith was up next and this meant one thing Sharks, Sharks and more sharks. We took our fish attraction triangle into the water see if we could attract the sharks to us. We were not disappointed. Our group of divers had around ten sharks zooming very close to them which always gets the adrenaline rushing through ones veins. Once we had finished our shark dive we then moved the relatively short distance to Jewfish Wall - Our divers took in a fabulous lunch en route. As we descended down the wall we are greeted by 3 curious reef sharks. They skirt close to us but quickly they dive down into the deep blue yonder. We trek on swimming in a southernly direction when all of a sudden a huge shape appears above us. Swimming toward us was a ten foot Tiger shark! In the sheer excitement of the moment we did not get pictorial evidence but we sure enjoyed seeing this apex predator up close and personal in its own domain. We see a whole host of reef critters and we explored the amazing swim throughs on Jewfish Wall. We pick up the ladders and motored North. The sea had calmed down and there wasnt a ripple on the surface apart from The Carib Dancers bow piercing the glass like ocean.
We enjoyed a wonderful dive on Crab Reef where saw numerous Parrotfish a huge lobster and a plethora of yellow rays. This dive site was an awesome way to end our day of diving in the Exuma Sound.
Friday October 30th
We ended the trip with a pre-breakfast dive on the Blue Hole. The group saw the resident Sharks Turtles and rays that frequent this wonderful site. After the dive we headed back into port taking in lunch along the way. Once we were tied up to our home dock guests were free to explore Nassau at their leisure. At 6PM we enjoyed a cocktail party upon the sun deck which rounded our trip off wonderfully.
Hope To See Everyone Again Soon…
Until then safe diving always
Carib Dancer Crew