02 November 2013

First time Back with the Camera

I was running late and Luis was already at the beach when I arrived.  Leo came a few minutes later.  We geared up and got in, though the visibility was not as good as we had hoped.  The ocean was relatively calm, but there was still a lot of sand in the water. Visibility was only about 10 ft. We swam out looking for the concrete blocks but did not find them.  I think we swam out  too far.

  I did spot Irish Thighs, though, and got on track.  Ended up well North of the Gray Mid-way Rock, but we recognized the Green Mountainous Coral of the Fish Camp Rocks and then swam to the Perpendicular Rocks, the Swept Rock and the Knoll.

 Found the Twospot Cardinalfish pictured above on the NW slope of the Knoll.  The Balloonfish was in the middle of the Knoll on the South edge.  The Lantern Bass to the left was on the North edge of the Knoll by the large rocks.

  The Shapnose Puffer below was also near the large rocks on the Northern edge of the Knoll.

We made a side trip to the English Garden, where I found the Juvenile Foureye Butterfulyfish below, as well as the Ocean Surgeonfish to the right and below.

Saw the Hawksbill pictured below on the North edge of the Knoll as we swam back from the English Garden.   Luis spotted an eel hiding in a hole on the Knoll with a little crab.  I blew through my air, though, and I brought everyone back early.

 It was a pleasant if short dive and it felt really good to be out on the reef with my camera.  I've missed this.

I had not intended to make a second dive, but Leo was up for it and Luis went along, so I did as well.  I thought about it, but decided not to take my camera along on this dive, either.  Visibility was poor and although I might have gotten some shots, there weren't many.

 This time, we swam out to the blocks before descending and had a good run up the gun sight and to the Cigar Rock.  Went a little South past the Cigar Rock, but found the split coral head and made the turn towards the Bubble Rocks and the Perpendicular Rocks.  From there we went easily to the Big Coral Knoll and even went to the English Garden.  Then it was back to the beach.
I was doing much better on my air for this dive.  Got a little over two hours of bottom time on the Knoll, which was just fine with me.