05 February 2012

Marc Langenol's First Open Water Dives

Marc was on time to the apartment, but Rita did not show.  We waited 15 minutes then headed to the beach.  Of course, when I got to the beach I noticed that I did not have my dive flag, so we headed back to the apartment for the flag.  When we got back to the beach, Luis and Leo were waiting for us.
 We geared up and got in.  There was a mild breeze from the East and some surf, but it wasn't too bad.  We swam out to the reef to descend. Visibility was about 3 feet over the sand and opened to maybe 15 feet on the reef.   Marc had a little trouble with his ears, but got it worked out.  We headed East.  
 Did not see the Little Coral Knoll, but saw a lot of familiar corals and rocks, including one coral that had been worked over by some Parrotfish.  We were close to the Knoll, but it didn't matter in our limited visibility.  We didn't see it.
 I could hardly see Marc in the haze.  We did see an octopus duck under a coral head.  He inked us and I got some shots of the ink hanging in the water, but I was too slow to get a shot of the octopus, itself.
 Marc was low on air before we got to the end of the reef, but we must have been close.  We turned and came back, again looking for the Knoll.  We didn't find it.  He was down to 800 psi and I had him use my alternate air source as we swam in.  He was having some trouble staying down, as well.
We were out for about an hour to warm up, then made a second dive.  I put another 4 pounds on Marc:  12 pounds.  Marc and I got in the water first to go through his skills.  He did fine.  Luis and Leo joined us and we headed East.
This time, we spotted the bucket, but swimming at 120 degrees did not bring us to the Knoll.  We did find some Staghorn Coral with White Grunts and several juveniles.
 I also spotted a Banded Coral Shrimp under a coral head and got a pretty good shot.
Marc and I turned back when he got low on air.  This time, however, I did not put him on my air until he was down to 500 psi.  We were still on the reef when we buddied up to share my air.  
 I got a good shot of an Intermediate Gray Angelfish, but swimming together, we could not get very close to the fish.
 We also found some lobster under a coral head.
Marc seemed to have better control of his buoyancy this time and we swam together pretty well.  We got to the beach about 20 minutes before Luis and Leo came in.    

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