Snorkeling adventure Caye Caulker

Published: February 8th 2011
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Fred and I had breakfast at the Sand Box this morning. Thought it'd be good to have a hearty meal before our 3 hour snorkel tour began at 10:30 this morning. The girls checked out and stored their luggage in our room and booked a room down the beach at Island Magic for the last two nights of their holiday. The golf cart taxi picked us up....had to make two trips because there were 6 of us. We could have walked to the dive shop but oh well. Boarded the boat, got a briefing from the captain and headed for the reef...a short 15 minute ride. The captain explained proper snorkeling etiquette in a marine reserve. He would guide us on the first two stops and we'd solo on the last. He'd spot a fish, dive down and point it out, then surface and give us the name. We saw blue tang, black grouper, and even a green morey eel. The grouper and captain were getting awfully close and the eel was having none of it. Way too close for my comfort. It wasn't a super windy day but sand was still getting kicked up from the bottom so some of the photos I took aren't real clear. The first stop lasted 45 minutes, then we boarded the boat and headed to shark and ray alley.

Our facebook friends already know the story but I'll tell it here for everyone to read. The southern rays and nurse sharks started swarming the boat as soon as we got to the area. We saw them breaking the surface of the water, wanting first dibs on whatever the captain was dishing out for their lunch. The water was shallow enough that we didn't need flippers, just mask and snorkel. We got in the water being careful not to step on a ray or shark...they had absolutely no fear of us because all the snorkel and dive guides stop here on tours and feed them daily. I decided still photos just weren't going to work and started taking a movie just as the captain threw lunch overboard. The feeding frenzy started and you can see the bozo that got bit right in the thick of it....stupid human (male) not stupid shark. Dani was screaming through her snorkel and she sounded like she was playing a kazoo. Lyndsay asked our guide to hold a ray so she could pet it and Fred could take a photo. Dani got all squeemish about touching it especially when the ray started flapping it's wings. It felt pretty cool and slimy to the touch. A barracuda showed up to join in the was 3 or 3.5 feet long and just hung around watching what was happening. Dani said she liked barracuda much better on the grill. Will have to wait until we get home to upload the video...the file just takes forever even on island time.

Once back in the boat we saw that one guy had two bleeding had a cut the other had a tiny chunk of flesh missing...from a shark bite. No kidding pal. There was no first aid kit of any kind onboard so Fred used what he could find....a clean white towel and a fish filet knife. He cut a small square and two long strips from the towel and did his best to bandage up the guys' fingers.

Our final stop was a place called Coral Gardens. We swam around and checked things out but not much happening. Anything was going to be a let down after the shark and ray adventure. We did notice that the coral here isn't nearly as colorful as in the Virgin Islands,

Once back at the dock, the guide gave the wounded tourist directions to the medical clinic on the island. Fred thought the guy would need several stitches in one finger.

Fred and the girls went to Babooze for lunch....I stayed poolside reading and sipping on a frozen pina colada...soooo goood. We made plans to have dinner with them tonight and do some shopping after that. Dinner was at Roses...grilled lobster with lime butter, barracuda, shrimp kabobs, coconut rice, steamed veggies, cheesy pastsa, Belikins and a Seabreeze. Fred stayed at the hotel while us girls hit one of the gift shops on island. Honesty those girls are so sweet. They told us they'd love to plan a vacation together with us and wanted to know all about how we got engaged, our wedding and previous vacations. They've told their parents about us...their new surrogate Mom and Dad (named Jesus Fred). Oh their parents must be so freaked out! Dani and Lyndsay have invited us to visit them in Calgary but I'm not so sure about the welcome we'd recive from their real families.

Additional photos below
Photos: 17, Displayed: 17


rays and sharks swarming boatrays and sharks swarming boat
rays and sharks swarming boat

kind of hard to see but the dark area in the water is all rays and sharks. You can see one ray on the surface. The object on the right is the outboard motor covered with a t-shirt.
rays underwaterrays underwater
rays underwater

the rays and sharks would come so close they'd brush up against your leg. We had to try real hard not to jump and scream.
Coral GardensCoral Gardens
Coral Gardens

I have no idea what this is but thought it was cool. Don't remember seeing it in the BVIs.

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