Invasion AKR Day 5

Well today is the day to start using my drysuit.

I decided against it. I really wanted to take it out, but at the chance of not getting my weighting right, going down to 33m to go see the Garden Eels on the Aguila wreck (the only dive that I’ve wanted to do down there), I didn’t want to chance it.

So I didn’t, at all for the trip, with only a few more dives left, I didn’t want to ‘waste’ a dive or few to get everything dialled in just to head back home to cold water.

It was a very painful decision, especially after talking it up all week with other dives.

The Aguila was a nice small wreck. I didn’t see much of it, as I spend a lot of time down on the sand with the Garden Eels, videoing and taking pictures of them, and other critters under the wreck.

One of our divers in our group cut the dive shorter than I would have liked for the dive (had their computer set to air instead of 32%), so was in ‘Deco’ for most of our dives. With this dive being straight down to 30-33m, it put it in very quick!

On our extended safety stop (we didn’t cruise too much around the reef), there were quite a few black groupers, with markings that I haven’t seen before. There was one with yellow lips and pectoral fins that liked to show off for the camera as it swam in and out of OW to the wall. Near the end, while doing my last few stops before getting to the ladder, a different grouper showed up with a very dark head, and white body.

The second dive of the day was at DMC (Dive Masters Choice). Aptly named (just guessing) due to the abundance of large critters like rays, turtles, groupers and the like.

I think we saw a dozen different turtles on this dive alone. Including 2 green turtles just hanging out ontop of the reef eating some sponges. Green turtles, are usually best seen by most divers just before they disappear into the abyss. They usually don’t hang around and hi tail it out of sight very quickly. It was very strange, and I didn’t get a picture 🙁

Many Hawksbill turtles, and some of the group even saw a small lagger head as well.

Also, I saw quite a number of Yellow Head Jawfish, in one spot (roughly the size of a small table top), I saw 6 in that one area.

After lunch, we headed back out to White Hole, which is aptly named due to the big, white sandy area just behind the mooring ball.

Before dinner, I headed out and did a shore dive with our German contingent. We headed out to the outer/inner reef to see what we could find (maybe even a bottle of rum – which draws a prize). Just before getting to the line, there was a medium sized Porcupine Puffer hanging out in 2′ of water. I quickly started up the camera rig and got a few shots, awkwardly floating above it. It didn’t like that, and was slightly puffed out by the time I could get out of its comfort zone. Sorry little guy!

Out on the reef, I saw a Southern Ray swim out in the distance. We saw some huge Parrot fish, a few lion fish (I was seeing 1-2 every dive so far … more on that later). We went through some cracks in the reef and headed back into the shallows.

We passed a pair of divers heading out to the reef as we were coming in, right around the time we started our night dive a few days earlier.

That pair found 1 of the bottles, along the line under a sponge. Lucky them!

While cleaning up my kit, the rubber knob on my yoke adapter broke, so now it’s wrench only to setup my rig.

The usual night routine, dinner, a beer, edit some photos and sleep.

With the lion fish. All of Roatan is a marine park, meaning there isn’t any fishing or spearing allowed. But what they do on occasion, is have a Lion Fish Derby, with prizes for the biggest, and smallest fish caught. They do this when people are seeing many lion fish per dive. It seems to be helping keep the reef fish populations up, while keeping the lion fish at bay for periods of time at recreational depths.
AKR Roatan, Aguilla Wreck
Date: April 30, 2014
Bottom Time: 40 minutes
Max Depth: 33m
Water Temp: 28.3C
Running Time: 59:32

AKR Roatan, DMC
Date: April 30, 2014
Bottom Time: 54 minutes
Max Depth: 21m
Water Temp: 28.9C
Running Time: 60:26

AKR Roatan, White Hole
Date: April 30, 2014
Bottom Time: 57 minutes
Max Depth: 23m
Water Temp: 28.9C
Running Time: 61:23

AKR Roatan, House Reef
Date: April 30, 2014
Bottom Time: 42 minutes
Max Depth: 14m
Water Temp: 28.3C
Running Time: 62:05

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