This trip is astonishing. Every experience has been fantastic. The warm sun and the cool blue water are just perfect. Yesterday, Sarah, Nick, Mary, Jo, Jenna and I went snorkeling in a small group before lunch. We swam out into the ocean and found giant cushion sea stars the size of dinner plates amongst the vast gardens of eel grass. Multiple times we dove down to pick them up and examine them. Swimming around the surface of the water we enjoyed the scenery for about half an hour before returning to the boat for lunch.
Bahamian cushion star
Snorkeling out into the ocean was wonderful, but of course there must always be a favorite part of the trip; mine so far has been snorkeling at the Sapona wreck. It was amazing being able to swim through the remarkable splendor of the wreck even though it is also sadly falling apart. Chef Matt informed me that one more hurricane may reduce the Sapona to a pile of rubble because of its current condition. I’m glad to be able to swim through this beauty before that ever happens.
View of the R/V Coral Reef II from inside the Sapona
The warm water and schools of fish around the Sapona were fabulous. This artificial “coral” house proved itself to be very useful to the fishes that call it home. We saw an abundance of grunts. I found it truly incredible listening to the snapping shrimp. The clicking noise was amazing.
Corals growing on the side of the Sapona
Out of my element? Well, maybe just a little bit. As I swam towards the Sapona wreck, I grew more and more anxious to see all the life in, out, and around the wreck. The Sapona site was a very beautiful thing to see, especially knowing the history behind the vessel it once was. In the day light it was nice, but the suspense of the night was a feeling I will never forget! Since the Sapona was my second night dive this week, I wasn’t nervous at all. I felt ready and equipped. The amount of life living in and around the Sapona was unbelievable; there were thousands of creatures and I was just one of them. I saw coral, sponges, southern stingrays, conchs, bluestriped grunts and my second porcupine fish. I was really hoping to see a scorpion fish. Next time.
Diving the Sapona
Schools of grunts inside the Sapona