Wednesday, August 29, 2007
What Lurkes Beneath the Ocean
Now I can officially say that I have experienced diving on all three islands in the Marianas. I went on a dive trip to Rota Island this past March and this past Sunday we took the Aqua Jet Dive Boat to Tinian Island. Rain or shine we still go diving unless of course the water conditions are too crazy. Cancelling a trip is rare. Gray skies and rain doesn't necesarily mean crummy dive conditions. By the time we get to the dive spots the rain has ceased and the water is like glass. What I have learned is to not let rain and gray skies predict what type of dive you will have because you never know! We had a great run on Sunday. Here's a picture of Crystal and our dive buddies from Guam: Eric and Dixie Fly. I love diving with them.
Its a one eyed winking creature lurking underneath the waters of Tinian! Oh wait, thats Harry Blalock! Thank goodness Harry didn't get seasick thanks to Crystal's sea sick pills. I would have never heard the end of it if he got sick! I had to remind Harry that he couldn't stay underwater for two hours like he was use to otherwise we would leave him. J/k Harry!
Our first dive site was the Tinian Grotto. Definitely not as grand as the Grotto here in Saipan but it truly has its unique features. It was nice to dive something different other than what we are use to. We found it pretty easy to navigate despite that we had never been there before. Of course my divemaster friend, Atsuko, was a great underwater tour guide. We swam through the underwater caves and crevices of the Tinian Grotto and discovered alot of macro life. You know what we were all searching for! Or atleast I was searching for Nudibranchs duriing the entire dive.
When we first dropped into the ocean the first thing we saw was about a six foot Sting Ray just resting on the bottom of the surface! What a cool sight and how lucky were we to see it! It was beautiful but all I kept thinking of was how this doesn't really compare to the huge Manta Rays we saw in Palau! Words cannot describe the feeling when a fifeteen foot wing span creature is cruisin above you! Its true that if you dive Palau you are spoiled maybe forever . . . and nothing else may compare. The scuba life in the Marianas is still really great.
Right in front of the entrance to the Tinian Grotto were Clown Fish. I think these are clown fish! My pictures of their eggs didn't turn out that great (big surprise) but you could see their beaded little black eyes.
Here's a picture of a a Halgerda Guahan Nudibranch. This is one that I see most of the time when I am diving the Grotto in Saipan.
This is a Halgerda Malesso Nudibranch. So far one of my favorites that I have seen! I love its intricate design. Can you believe there are over 100 types of Nudibranchs?! I have so much more to see!
Our second dive site was called Dump site. This second dive is unique because it has alot of plane wreckage and bullets from WWII. We were told that we could handle the bullets underwater but we couldn't bring it above the water with us. Apparently something about phosphurus and igniting a fire on the boat may occur. I didn't quite hear the entire explanation. We made sure Harry didn't put any in his pockets.
Atsuko found this Nudibranch and I have no idea what its name is! The ones that I have seen in the Saipan Grotto was more purple. This one was more on the bluish side.
I saw alot of deadly Scorpian Fish at this dive site. Love the colors and how sometimes it blends into the coral. You gotta watch out where you place your hands.
Hmmm, its a Moretti diving below me.
Phew, I'm tired. I may just relax and snorkel this upcoming weekend=)