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T&C Explorer II v. Belize Aggressor IV

Discussion in 'Greater Caribbean and Bermuda' started by VirginiaScubaGuy, Sep 5, 2019.

  1. drrich2

    drrich2 Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Southwestern Kentucky
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    I hit it April 2018 aboard the T&C Aggressor II, and they hit much of the same dive sites. In case it helps, here's my trip report. Different boat and crew, but might give you some idea.
    Turks & Caicos Aggressor II Report Apr. 2018 - Turks & Caicos Aggressor II 4/21-4/28 Trip Report

    Back when the Belize Aggressor IV was still called the Sun Dancer 2, I did that trip in 2015.
    Sun Dancer 2 (Belize) May 2015 - http://www.scubaboard.com/forums/li...ving-belize-via-sun-dancer-2-may-2nd-9th.html But I think @Trailboss123 did the trip later aboard the Belize Aggressor III and had a different experience (apologies if my brain made that up; going on recall here, and my brain's getting old), so my trip may've been more of a 'best case scenario.'

    I liked the overall reef structure and life better on the Belize trip; T&C did have more sharks. To me the question shouldn't be which, it should be 'which first?'

    I haven't been watching the news; not sure about any recent hurricane impacts.

    Richard.
     
    chillyinCanada likes this.
  2. VirginiaScubaGuy

    VirginiaScubaGuy Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location:
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    Richard I really appreciate your input! I agree with you that it should be a matter of what you do first!

    Reading your Belize post, you and I seem to have simiar issues with 1) how to get time off and 2) how to get value from your hard earned money. I have some doctor friends/acquaintances who friggin dive exotic locations without thinking about almost once a month and it's really annoying. that is not me...

    Anyway, I don't know if you saw this:

    Trip Report: Turks & Caicos Explorer II, June-July 2019

    Long story made short is that Ironborn was very impressed with T&CE2.

    My first liveaboard was the BlueForceOne in January 2018. There was some amazing diving there but it was slightly beyond my experience level with some of the currents in the channels through the atolls. I was grouped with some divers who were even less experienced than me. For some reason, our instructor would drop down to 90 feet almost every time, and we were always the first group up after about 35 minutes. Even so, I did do some amazing diving with one channel dive where there were about 25 sharks swimming out in the channel while we were hooked into the reef. I'll never forget that one.

    The other somewhat funny thing about that trip was that i was barefoot on the diveboat (separate from the yacht) and for one reason or another my feet slipped and i did a split. writhed in pain. next day did the same damn thing. fortunately, it was like the last days of the dive, but i had to wait like 3 or 4 full days to get home to get my groin looked at by an American doctor. lol TMI?? i did learn that when **** happens and you're half way around the world, there can be problems.

    anyway, this time back in the water i'm looking for some nice, easy Carribean diving. i had been thinking doing some sort of group dive, but why worry... just go wherever on my own. so now i'm thinking Cayman, Belize, and T&C.

    I did Cayman (at Sunset Divers) as my first dive trip ever but was so nervous i don't think i got the full effect. i could possibly try that again. i now read that in Belize, "the dry season runs from March through May. The most predictably good weather for diving is from April through June when the winds are normally light." maybe i could push that back and do old reliable Turks and Caicos. have u done that one dive in West Caicos where you drop to about 80 feet, do a swim through, and come out through the wall where a girl reef shark patrols. she's pretty cool.

    i guess i'll think about it a bit more before deciding although i want to book something soon. i can't keep putting it off. thanks again for your comments.

    james
     
    drrich2 and chillyinCanada like this.
  3. chillyinCanada

    chillyinCanada Solo Diver Staff Member

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    James, those splits really hurt no doubt!

    But you were lucky in some ways.

    My first live aboard one of the men slipped coming down the stairs from sundeck to main deck. He landed on his tailbone and a butt cheek. Bruised him through to bones. One of the biggest ugliest haematoma I've ever seen, though it did turn spectacular colours. (He was cool enough to share with us other divers though didn't show TMI)

    The trip following ours had been fully booked but as we were departing we found out that there had been a double open up. A man who'd been diving elsewhere prior to joining onto our boat had slipped boarding a rib and had ruptured his testicle(s). He was hospitalized and awaiting medical repatriation.

    Be careful out there!!
     
  4. BigJimDiver

    BigJimDiver Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: New Jersey
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    I've done T&C 3 times (land-based in the mid- '90's, Aggressor May December 2016 & T&C Explorer May 2018) and Belize twice (BAIII & IV when it was still Sun Dancer). While variety is nice and we enjoyed both I personally felt T&C was better diving. I might a little less objective as our last trip to Belize December 2017 the visibiity was reduced some due to active weather pattern the week prior and beginning of our week, and I got a funny vibe from the lead DM all week, who was instructed my daughter getting heer AOW on board, he was superficially friendly but it seemed forced and he did not seem genuine (and I'm not that sensitive). A few considerations: Our Turks trips were shortly before Irma, and ~1 year after. West Caicos was in reasonably good shape, but we made a brief trip over to French Cay and it was shockingly worse. I'm not sure I understand the wind direction relative to the orientation of the walls but recall one of the DM saying the winds/surge was towards the wall in West Caicos, but off the wall in French Cay causing a massive amount of sand to be washed over the wall. The bottom was noticeably void of sand, it had a very unusual appearance. As for Belize, while we did the Sun Dancer in 2012 (aka BA IV now), we had no issue doing to Blue Hole. But in 2017 when on BAIII, we made the trip, but the BAIV "could not" either our week or the prior week; we were told the tides have to be right as BAIV has a deeper draft tjhan BAIII so can't always do that dive. I don't think you'd be disappointed in either trip!
     

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