I arrived in Curacao Thursday, Sept 7 and settled in to the gorgeous Marriott resort with a room overlooking the ocean.
Friday, Sept 8
2 dives on Playa Kalki (Alice in Wonderland)
1st dive: 61 minutes @ 72 ft
Ahhhh…it’s great to be diving again!! Saw all the usual suspects – parrotfish, butterfly fish, damsels, wrasse, grunts, trunkfish, porcupine fish, morays, etc. Also spotted a HUGE sea turtle about 50 feet below – as well as a gorgeous spotted eagle ray that soared within 20 feet of us.
On the surface interval, we were greeted by a very friendly donkey. He was quite interested in our oranges and other assorted snacks. He even tried to nibble on a few pieces of SCUBA gear!
2nd dive: 58 minutes @ 68 ft
It’s raining fish! It’s amazing how these dives have you feeling like you’re diving in an aquarium! You don’t have to ‘spot’ fish – you just have to try to pay attention to all the fish everywhere! Another spotted eagle ray (dragging some fishing line) and a juvenile trunkfish (I LOVE baby trunkfish!)
And our friendly donkey was waiting for us when we returned from the 2nd dive!
Saturday – Monday (Sept 9th through Sept 11th)
EFR and Dive Rescue course – see report under Dive Training here
Tuesday – Sept 12th
1st Dive: Car Pile 53 minutes @ 106 ft
This is my 3rd dive on Car Pile and it never ceases to be an amazing dive! There’s just a heap of cars, beams, etc starting around 80’ or so. Lots of critters hanging around here – including a HUGE green moray making his home in one of the open tubes and 3 crab tucked in under another piece of rubble. Heading back from car pile, we spotted 8 squid just hanging around the reef, as well as a MASSIVE peacock flounder (about the size of my Thanksgiving turkey platter) camouflaged in the sand.
2nd Dive: Pierbaai 61 minutes @ 60 ft
This is the house reef for the Dive Bus – and a popular reef for Curacao local divers. Suzy and I had a fantastic relaxing dive, with the surge bouncing us around a bit, but it was still fun! Here I am enjoying the scenery:
As well as some great shots Suzy took along the way:
Wednesday, Sept 13th
Infamous Tug Boat
1st dive: 61 minutes @ 77 ft
2nd dive: 58 minutes @ 74 ft
These are my 4th and 5th dives on Tug Boat – it’s like visiting an old friend. You start out the dive on a wall, then make your way back to do your safety stop hanging out at the tugboat around 15’…the ultimate safety stop! We spotted some scorpionfish, several spotted morays, and a multitude of banded coral shrimp. Along the safety stop at tug boat, we had some friendly parrotfish that insisted on introducing themselves fish-face to mask! And despite our efforts, we were foiled by the illusive frogfish! Andy’s been able to spot several frogfish at Tug Boat, but we were unsuccessful – although I found a piece of coral that REALLY looked like one – so much so that we had to look at it carefully to make sure!
On the second dive, we chose a different part of the wall to dive and ended up the dive going under the pier – I love that – a little spooky, but teeming with French Angelfish!
As you can probably tell, I had a fantastic trip! So much so, that I’m burning off another week of vacation by heading down there again November 15th – 21st. Anyone want to join me!? (American Airlines is having great sales to the Caribbean right now – direct flights into Curacao from Miami!)
Special thanks to the Dive Bus crew – Suzy, Mark, Andy and Emille – for making my trip another great experience.
Suzy – for being such a wonderful, warm friend – and a relaxed dive buddy photographer to pick up great photos on our dive
Emille – for always being there to refill my coffee (even though I had a terrible tendency of SPILLING it!)
Mark – for being a great dive master and buddy – always spotting cool stuff for us to see!
This post has been edited by Terri: 01 October 2006 - 06:18 PM