Today waking up was really hard, but we got some breakfast at the marina and immediately got on the boat for a two tank dive, or two dives on the same outing. Our first dive was at Dave’s Grotto and our goal was to identify as many fish as we can. We went over a small briefing on what some fish look like and what we could expect to see. Again, the water was amazing and I saw so many different kinds of fish, from trumpetfish, to angel fish, to even a lion fish which our dive master speared and left for other fish to eat it. We were under about an hour looking for all kinds of fish and coral before we came up to the boat for an hour before our next dive. We switched tanks and took a snack break while we sped over to west seal dog island where there was a labyrinth of rocks in the water. While still on the surface interval, we did a little snorkeling and free diving around the rocks. We saw the first Caribbean reef shark swimming about 50ft down. We got all our gear on and went down to about 60 feet to swim along the rocks and see more fish. I saw another barracuda along with schools of all kinds of fish. As soon as we got to the area where the rocks create a sort of maze, we found the area belonged to three Caribbean reef sharks. Previously, the staff had only thought there were two. It was incredible to see them swimming along. We didn’t stay down much longer and we came up on the boat and headed back for shore after looking at the moon jellies near the surface. We took a little break at our rooms and then we went down to the “Baths” where we met another dive BVI staff member to be guided through the rocks on the beach and led us through some beautiful rock caverns to get to devil’s bay. On the way we ate some fresh mangoes and termites, yes, termites, while she talked to us about the rocks and how pirates used to be in the area. Once we got there, we put on our snorkeling gear and swam around the rocks, getting to free dive under a few and around all kinds of fish. We swam about half of a mile back to our beach near our cabins where we chilled for a little in the surf before going back to change for dinner. We went up to our dinner area and ate before playing cards back in the cabins and going to bed.
Today I woke up and took a cold shower before heading to the marina for breakfast. We had another two tank dove today, this time we dove a wreck called the RMS Rhone. The Rhone was a postal ship for Britain during the late 1800s which sunk because of one the largest hurricanes in the BVI ever. Our first dive was of the bow of the ship. We got to swim through part of the ship at about 80 feet of water. All the Carbon dioxide everyone released made small air pockets inside. It was amazing to see the inside of the ship and where it was ripped open. Everywhere the coral had grown over all the parts of the ship, making it almost unrecognizable. The inside of the ship was a huge cavern like area and it was amazing to swim through. We swam by the boilers and through some of the framework of the ship before we had to start going back. On the way back we saw some spotted moray eels, a barracuda, and plenty of squirrel fish, along with a massive spiny lobster hiding in the wreckage. We surfaced and took an hour long break on the ship after putting on new tanks to our rigs. The crew gave us some history of the Rhone and how all crew but the captain survived the wreck and only 1 passenger lived. On our second dive, we started at the boilers and made our way to the stern of the ship, where we saw the giant rudder and propeller and got to swim through the area where it was. We saw an old mooring anchor it had out in the middle of the sand before we made it back. The entire stern had been ripped open because it had been packed with dynamite to get it off of the rock known as the “Can Opener”. There is a window called “Lucky Port 26” on the side which when you rub three times in a clockwise way, grants you three Italian wishes, because the only survivor was Italian. We saw a small octopus and some more eels before we surfaced again. I got really seasick but that went away when we started moving again. We got to Cooper island a little later for lunch and we had the best fish and chips in existence before going to the gift shop and having cold gelato. We were about to start snorkeling when one of the dive masters caught another small octopus and put it on the deck of the boat. When he put it back in, it sprayed ink everywhere. We got snorkeling around the island and immediately we saw a bunch of small fish. We saw some really cool things like the mantis shrimp, the best fish ever, according to The Oatmeal, and a large green sea turtle and I got to swim along side it. We saw some massive southern rays and huge turpins and a barracuda hanging under a boat. Halfway through the snorkel my fin’s strap and buckle broke and I had to carry it and swim with one fin, it was insanely tiring. We got back to the harbor on virgin gorda and came back to the cabins before e went to the beach for some grilled burgers and hot dogs. After wrestling in the water until it got dark, we grabbed some flashlights and our snorkeling gear and dove in the water and looked for lobsters and rays and eels. We saw some bioluminescent plankton, which when you shake your hand, they start to glow. We also saw some small squids going about in the water before we headed in and went back to our cabins before I wrote this.