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EVRachel

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St Maarten
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I'm a Fish!
Here's our latest trip report. Dive in!
Turks & Caicos Explorer II
May 22-29, 2021. From the crew.


Guests were in the water at North West Point, TCI for the first dive of the charter at Eel Garden. The Caribbean and Nurse Sharks were seen on the first dive as a few of the guests shook off the cobwebs from not doing much diving in a while. On dive 2, guests were shown the minuscule skeleton shrimp that have colonies on the South communication cable at Eel Garden. Dives 3 & 4 the guests were shown the Amphitheatre with its rare Black Corals and the Neck Crabs that inhabit them. The night dive was full of nocturnal creatures including Channel Clinging Crabs, Basket Stars, Southern Stingrays, and two Caribbean octopuses.

The next day, the sun was out with a stiff breeze keeping the dive deck cool, dives 1 & 2 were enjoyed by all as most of the group jumped into the water to dive The Dome. Tino, who is the latest amazing dive guide to join TCEX2 crew led the group through the Chimney and the guests were shadowed faithfully under the boat by the ever-present friendly Caribbean Reef Sharks. The 2nd dive and Jo showed the guest the variety of life on The Dome, including the Blennies, Skeleton Shrimp, and Giant Anemone. Dive 3 at Shark Hotel was enjoyed after a tasty lunch with Tino leading the dive. Dives 4 & 5 at Stairway were enjoyed by the divers and all dive sites did not disappoint. Loads of pelagic species were seen including large amounts of Barracudas.

On Tuesday we crossed to West Caicos. The guests were treated to a beautiful sunrise if they were up early enough. The first 2 dives were to be at the dive site The Gully. On this first dive of the day guests came back to the boat speaking of Green Morays, Pygmy Filefish, and the banded jawfish. We dove The Driveway dive site in the afternoon which was excellent. Oceanic Triggerfish, Scorpion Fish, and large schools of Horse Eye Jacks were a few of the spotted species under the water. The night dive was packed with rare and interesting species, a rare black flounder was spotted and enjoyed, as well as a baby scorpionfish. All enjoyed the dive thoroughly as the weeks diving kept on providing top-notch diving, dive after dive.

Once more the boat's engines started and the boat moved to a favorite dive site of the crew, Elephant Ear Canyon on Wednesday. Dives 1 and 2 the divers spotted Southern Stingrays, Head Shield Slugs, Schools of Barracuda, Giant Anemones, Pike Blennies, and of course the 1000’s of Garden Eels. Captain JF went in with Terry and Gene on a photo hunt op, they found arrow shrimp, pike blennies, pipefish, juvenile drum fish, and anemones with squat anemone shrimp, octopus, and a few more item to add to their picture collection. Proving once again why this dive site is so coveted by the various diving operations around Providenciales. The afternoon dives were held at Brandywine with Turtles being the highlights of dives 3 and 4. The boat was visited by dolphins just before dinner who played around by the boat a few minutes before the sunset.

Thursday's dives 1 and 2 were done at The Anchor, with crew and guests getting into the fancy dress pirate theme of the site. A large school of 100’s of mutton snapper were seen during the dive, Fairy and Black Cap Basslets were amongst the beautiful fish seen on these dives. The guests got to hang out with a hawksbill turtle during dive 2 and once again many Barracuda and Caribbean Reef Sharks hanging around this dive site. Dives 3 on the last afternoon of diving was held at G-Spot. Sleeping Nurse Sharks, Lobsters, Spotted Drums, Slippery Dicks and Spotted Eels were the afternoon’s delightful sightings. Dive 4 the guests enjoyed the beautiful overhanging wall down at 70’ at the G-Spot. Dive 5 and the exciting shark night dive had more than half the group in the water to watch as the Nurse Sharks hunted for their prey ten feet below. The nurse sharks doing all the work and both divers and Caribbean reef sharks loitering around waiting for some action. All enjoyed this unique dive here at the G-Spot.

On Friday, Half Mile Reef was the final diving destination for this lovely group here aboard TCEX2. The early risers of the group numbering 13 splashed into the water at 6 AM on a sunny final diving morning. The dive was a relaxed affair. The last dive of the day had only a few divers in the water with the majority deciding to give their gear the most amount of time possible to dry before disembarking the next days' flights.

On Saturday, the guests disembarked heading home full of great memories of the week in Turks & Caicos.
 

Hoag

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If the "Jo" that is mentioned is Bungee Jo, all I can say is she was there when I did my trip on the TCEX2 and she gave THE BEST dive briefings I have ever seen.
 

EVRachel

Contributor
Messages
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Location
St Maarten
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I'm a Fish!
If the "Jo" that is mentioned is Bungee Jo, all I can say is she was there when I did my trip on the TCEX2 and she gave THE BEST dive briefings I have ever seen.

She does do great briefings! :thumb2:
 
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