It had been two days, our month was over and Carcycle was gone, and we we were jonesing. So we piled into the dinghy and putt-putted up to Cliff. There was another boat coming in at the same time, but they had dual 300HP outboards and easily beat us to the mooring. But since our dinghy is basically a fender, they let us tie up alongside, and we hit the water around the same time. Once in, almost the first thing we saw was this tangle in a gorgonian, which (it turns out) is a giant basket star. They unfold at night, but during the day they hide in recesses or curl up in the branches of a gorgonian.
Cliff is so-named because there’s a big section of vertical wall, with a small sand channel at the bottom. We started out along the cliff wall.
We were immediately struck by how many other divers were in the water. There were maybe four other groups, if you include the pair from the other boat. One was passing when we saw this sharptail eel hunting along the wall, and we failed to get their attention, but we did get what I think is one of our best fish-interaction photos yet. “Nope!”
To escape the crowds, we changed directions and swam with the current for a while. We were rewarded with cool-looking coral and a big tarpon.
We’d just about gotten back to the boat…
… when we noticed that the divers on the other boat were just about to get out of the water. To avoid getting in their way, we headed towards shore for an extra-long safety stop, where we saw lots of sand-dwelling critters.
Then it was back to the boat, and back to Wannadive’s dock to return our tanks and rinse our gear.