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*Roatan Aggressor Captains Log, July 28th 2018
*Air Temp. 81-87F
*Water Temp. 79-82 F
* Visibility 70ft-160ft
* Wetsuit req. 3-5 mm full, shortie or skin
Captain - Eddy
Operations Manager - Alan
Chief Engineer - German
Chef - Miss Jana
Sous Chef/Steward - Miss Janell
Instructor & Video Pro - Gerardo
Instructor & Photo Pro - Gabi
Sunday –Valley of the Kings, Mary’s Place & Black Rock (Roatan)
Monday - Sea-mounts, Little Coco & Toon Town (Cayos Cochino)
Tuesday - (Utila) - Ted’s Point, Jack Neal Point & Creole Bank
Wednesday - (Utila) - The Pinnacle, Half Moon Bay Wall & Eel Garden (Roatan)
Thursday – Dolphin Caves, The Odyssey (O.D.C.) & Tavianna (Roatan)
Friday –Cara A Cara & Mr Bud
Saturday July 28th
The Roatan Aggressor welcomes this week 17 guests many of whom have been with us before in a variety of locations, its always good to see Dive the World Club members & Aggressor Addicts many of whom are VIP’s, lots of familiar faces. 15 arrive this evening with 2 arriving tomorrow due to connection issues. Once the dive gear is set up, check in is complete & the welcome meeting concluded it’s that time of the week to head up to the sundeck for our Saturday BBQ. Gerardo is manning the grill. Chef Miss Jana & Sous Chef Miss Janell are adding the final touches to all the delicious sides, the hydroponic salads which are all grown on the island by the local people & delivered to the boat today. There are tasty baked potatoes, crunchy corn on the cob which accompany juicy ribs & succulent chicken. Should any room be left for desert we are serving a delicious homemade island style pineapple rum cake with caramel sauce. After a long days travel some take the opportunity for an early night whilst others are ready for a movie on the big screen.
Sunday July 29th
Captain Eddy starts the engines at 5.30am & we depart French Harbour staying on the south side of the island moving a short distance to our new dive site, Valley of the Kings. The weather is lovely with a slight breeze, the water glorious, after the weekly deck briefing with a little boutique shopping thrown in we splash at 8am. Once neutral buoyancy is established we head to the edge of the beautiful wall seeking out critters, amongst the outstanding White Stinger & Branching Hydroids there are Spotted Lobsters in the Barrel Sponges, Spiny Lobsters under the overhangs, Arrow Blenny’s hidden amongst other similarly colored small fish, a big Arrow Crab has his electric blue claws out seeking out prey. Turning from the wall, heading up through the crack which leads to the top of the reef the sun is glinting down upon us as we exit the crack & spend time upon the sandy patch watching the Yellow Headed Jawfish, Scaly-tail Mantis & Dark Mantis before returning to the mooring line to do our safety stop before heading back to the boat. Once we exit the water Chef Jana has made homemade warm chocolate chip cookies, delicious. Captain Eddy splashes for a 2nd dive at 10.15am there is a free swimming Green Moray, a shy Golden Tail Eel, a large shoal of Sgt. Majors & to top it off a large Spotted Eagle Ray swoops by much to the delight of those lucky divers. Its lunch & whilst our hungry divers are being fed we travel the short distance to Mary’s Place for a 2pm dive. Mary’s Place is so beautiful, buzzing with life, a gigantic carved out crevice & passageways with a lovely shallow, sandy top reef. There was a Dark Mantis which Linda found. The east winds had picked up so we travelled to the other side making our next dive at 4.45pm at Black Rock. A deep sloping wall which from the mooring takes you up to the shallows where the Blue Tang Gang are going about their crazy lives. It’s 6.15pm & dinner time, caramelized plantain garnishes the deep water snapper which sits on rice & peas. 7.15pm & the night dive briefing for the week & time to delve into the dark waters & up to the shallows, we see Reef & Common playful Octopi, Reef Squid, Golden Coral Shrimp. a juvenile Smooth Trunkfish which is so tiny looking like a fury dice, there are Lavender Tube Dwelling Anemone, a tiny Bumblebee Shrimp that is hidden in a coral hole. The place is blanketed with Red Knight Shrimp, Spotted & Spiny Lobster, Red Hermit Crabs, it’s a great night dive.
Monday July 30th
Its an early start this morning, with winds picking up later today we decide to get over to Cayos for a pre breakfast dive so the engines start at 4.30am & off to the South we go, the journey is a little bumpy but with our guests tucked up in bed all is well, the bell rings, the site briefing done & in we all splash with Captain Eddy, it is splendid down there, so fresh and clear, the colors are awesome. With the Spotted Scorpion Fish, Hawkfish, Orange Spotted Goby, & huge Nassau Groupers following us around against a back drop of these magnificent mountains that are underwater. They are truly splendid with their deep slopes & intricate top reefs, an oasis in the ocean. There are the usual shoals of Atlantic Spadefish, Yellow Tail Snappers, Sgt. Major’s & Creole Wrasse with Giant Barracudas on their continuous search for food. Over in the sponge garden there are Florida Corallimorph, Red Orange Encrusting Sponge & Erect Rope Sponge along with the wonderful Nurse Shark who is going about her day. Out on the wall a beautiful Spotted Eagle Ray soars by, the 2nd this week. To top it off the ’G’ master finds a Pipe-horse, fabulous! It’s a good week & its only Monday. After lunch we move over to Little Coco for a dive at 2pm, there is some serious surge however we see Atlantic Spadefish, Wahoo & Kingfish.
Once everyone is back onboard we head straight to the protection of Cayos Cochinos and Toon Town delving into the water at 4.15pm, a fabulous array of shrimp, crabs & eels in addition to a Large Eyed, Bearded Toadfish who the guests thought to be quite ugly, poor thing, I think he is beautiful! After dinner 6 divers splash at 7.15pm with Eddy. Lisa & Dave get seriously lucky as they spot a Flying Gurnard with pictures to prove it, how wonderful.
Tuesday July 31st
5.15am the engines start & we are off to Utila, breakfast is on route. We moor up in time for a splash at 8.15am. Ted’s Point is on the south-side of Utila towards the east end. We have a SE swell which pushes our stern into the shallows the water is so very beautiful and crystal clear, such an amazingly pretty dive with it’s Sail-fin Blenny, Golden-tail Moray, Shrimp Goby, Tobacco Fish, Southern Stingray, Box Crab, Flamingo Tongue & Spotted Drum. Over to Jack Neal for the next dive, a wonderful dive with its Garden Eels, Pale Squatted Snake Eel, umpteen juvenile Slender Filefish camouflaging themselves in-between the fingers of the fans. 6 Reef Squid dancing around, lots of Upside-down Jellyfish, huge Arrow Crabs who look like they have been taking steroids, beautiful Brittle Stars that are wrapped around coral stems, a variety of Blenny’s, too many to mention & several Lesser Electric Rays. During lunch we travel over to Creole Bank on the western most point seeking protection from the east winds which are picking up & due to get stronger. In we splash at 2pm, the waves are choppy on the surface but the outside world and weather becomes a distant memory as you delve into the blue, with all the creole wrasse darting around it is a surprise to see 2 juvenile Smooth Trunkfish, the furry dice type, a couple of juvenile, Spotted Drums, Pigmy Filefish & Slender Filefish plus a juvenile Grasby, all fabulous stuff. Captain calls the night dive off due to weather and we head during dinner into Spanish bay to seek protection, Patty shows us past pictures & videos from previous trips to Roatan & Utila with some younger fresher faces of the crew, most amusing, haha.
Wednesday Aug 1st
Having slept over in Utila & the safety of Spanish Bay we depart at 5.30am traveling the relatively short distance over to the Pinnacle, a deep wall with a huge coral pinnacle that sits off of the wall. Captain Eddy leads the group & they go off hunting for critters, everyone agrees what a beautiful site this is. The wind is going to pick back up again so after just one dive we head back to Roatan, a 3 hour slightly bumpy journey. We serve lunch just as we reach Roatan. With a barrier from the winds on the north-side at Half Moon Bay Wall we dive at 1pm, 3pm & 5pm to ensure that our divers don’t miss any dives. 2 dives are at Half Moon, one of the dives is a Turtle circus with both Hawksbill and Green eating sponges with Queen Triggers feeding off the crumbs, an awesome display. We move over for the last day dive to Eel Garden for our 5pm dive, delving in we head straight to the mooring in the sand and swim over the Garden Eels that are swaying and dancing. As we head for the shallows in waters no deeper than 20ft we come across an small Reef Octopus with what looks like a Cowrie shell both huddled in a coral hole, the octopus looks like it was feasting on its catch! It was fascinating to watch. A short distance away we find a tiny beautiful juvenile Spotted Drum, gorgeous, then we get even luckier as we find a pretty small Pipefish which turns out to be a Pipe-horse!!! Lynda & Ezzie were lucky enough to find a Sharp Tail Eel being cleaned. Back from the dive and its dinner followed by Utilian Caramel Bread Pudding, yummy! Captain Eddy takes 7 of our divers out for the night dive, the wind has really picked up its very blowy! They were glad that they went, just the 4 Common & Reef Octopi! What a day it has been, Turtle & Octopi circus has blessed the Roatan Aggressor, fantastic diving day despite the windy weather the sighting have been out of this world!
Thursday Aug 2nd
A 5am start & we’re off to Dolphin Caves, the windy weather is a bit better & our journey there is good with breakfast on the way. We arrive in time for an 8am splash, 12 divers follow our dive masters into the network of passage ways with sunlight penetrating giving an almost magical sensation, as the area opens out into a beautiful sandy area our video pro is arranging the guests in a kneeling semi circle, what could be happening? The focus turns to Russ & Connie, Russ pulls from his BCD a small treasure trove which he places in the sand for Connie, she picks it up and opens it and inside is an engagement ring, with all of us watching and waiting water trickles into our masks as we start to smile, she confirms what we had hoped, she said YES!, Awesome, the cameras start flashing & giving them a few moments along the dive masters go off in search of critters for our other guests, in one Giant Anemone we find a Squat Anemone and in another Alice finds 7! There are Bermuda Chubs, Glass Eye Snappers, Saddleback Blenny’s & a Heart Shaped Urchin Crab, a good omen maybe? A 2nd dive at 10.15am and in they all go. Once up from the dive its lunch as we travel west to the Odyssey, O.D.C. Wreck dive for a 1.30pm dive, the surface is slightly choppy but the water is clear & the wreck magnificent, there are swim thru’s for those that enjoy that but for the photographers it up on the highest parts of the wreck with excellent light, superb colors & the tiny critters such as Arrow Crabs & Filament Blenny’s. Over to Tavianna to complete the day. Capt Eddy delves in with the guests, it’s calm, they love it, Tavianna’s is so pretty so many cleaning stations, the Queen Triggers dive in to eat the Lion-fish on offer, Lynda & Ezzie find a very symbiotic area with Corkscrew Anemone containing Snapping Shrimp, Pedersen Shrimp, Arrow Crabs, Squat Anemone Crab & Lobster. Francine goes crazy for a couple of intermediate Spotted Drums. The bugle blows calling everyone to dinner where we serve our speciality dinner, our amazing Lobster Surf & Turf with brown gravy & creamy mash potato, swiftly followed by White Chocolate Creme Brûlée. The briefing of the following days activities is given then its an early night for most, another fun packed busy day tomorrow.
Friday Aug 3rd
Well its a little later in the week than normal due to weather & an engagement but its time for our weekly visit to see our wonderful sharks! We do a pre breakfast dive at 7am with a live drop totaling 12 divers. There are plenty of female Caribbean Reef Sharks, some mighty large Black, Nassau & Tiger Groupers who all put on quite a show. Our hungry divers return & delve into a full cooked breakfast, yummy! The wind has dropped from what it has been all week and we are very grateful for this, we head over to Mr Bud and do two dives. In between the dives we show the video of the week by Gerardo Spielberg! awesome movie and very well received, its then time to settle bills before splashing for the last time this charter. Our guests exit the water & we assist them with rinsing the salty water off their gear & hang it out to dry. Heading into dock we serve lunch, succulent baked chicken & a variety of sides with Triple Chocolate Brownies for desert. Docking at Romeo’s our group this week pack and relax, many of them taking a short stroll down to the beautiful Buccaneers for a cocktail or three before joining the crew at 6pm for our ‘Pirate’ themed “Rum Punch Cocktail Party", always a lively event. We have a bugle blowing contest which Lynda wins hands down, her prize, a signed ’T’ Shirt from the crew. We have 6 Iron Divers this week, David, Lisa, Connie, Russ, Francine & Jim, well done all of you. We have to give an award to our cutest couple Chuck & Mary who are Aggressor Addicts who we know we will see very soon, Connie & Russ get an award for getting engaged but we also had to give an award for there navigational skills, the Christopher Columbus Discovery award, a bit tongue in cheek! Thank you for joining us this week it has been a lot of fun. The party moves forwards as we head over to Romeos, French Harbour, its less than 20 steps away & as always a superb 5 star dinning experience.
Saturday Aug 4th
Its 7.30am, all our lovely guests are finishing off their continental breakfast & at 8am all guests board our transportation to the airport or to Pineapple Villas to chill on the day rate we have arranged for them which allows them to use the facilities until they are ready to go to the airport. We hope you have a safe & speedy onwards journey & come back and visit us very soon or catch up with you somewhere else in the world. Until the next time, the crew of the Roatan Aggressor………..