The diving continued this weekend with a couple of trips out to Samantha Reef. The weather was perfect for diving and the water was smooth as glass. Samantha is an un-marked reef with no buoys so we had to be careful making sure we dropped our anchor in the sand and not on part of the reef. We had much better visibility on our 2 dives here than we did at Sombrero. The reef was excellent with a lot of coral and sea life—grey angelfish, moray eel, yellow stingray and a plethora of grunts and yellow tail snapper.
It’s been 5 years since I last went diving before this trip and so I’ve been plagued with equipment malfunctions, starting with my mask leaking. My mask, I guess, was just getting too old and the seal wasn’t as good as it should be so I ended up purchasing a new one here in Marathon. My dive computer hasn’t worked at all on this trip and quit on my first dive. Luckily, my air pressure gauge works and we are diving very shallow (max depth reached so far is 28 feet). My first dive at Samantha my regulator started free flowing and wouldn’t work, so Randy and I climbed out of the water and removed the regulator (so it wouldn’t leak air) and replace it with Corey’s quick-connect that he wasn’t using. So, I dove both dives at Samantha with my 10+ year old octopus which worked fine. Like I said, luckily we are diving shallow so it’s a quick ascent if anything goes wrong. On my second dive at Samantha my underwater camera flooded and quit working. I’ve been using a waterproof (up to 33 feet) camera by Nikon. I know we haven’t been deeper that 28 feet or so, so I’m not sure why it broke. I’m thinking it wasn’t really meant for diving, maybe snorkeling and getting splashed in a boat. So, that last dive was not so fun diving computer-less, on and old octopus and a broken camera. I plan to get a new regulator from a local shop before we dive next weekend. As for the camera, I guess I won’t have anymore underwater pics to share 🙁
After diving, Corey and Randy wanted to fish for yellow tail snapper. They caught about 30 of them but only 3 were keeper size (12 inches). We fileted them and put them in the fridge for Sunday night supper. On Sunday, Randy’s dad joined us for a trip out to Samantha for our second dive and more fishing. Corey caught another keeper snapper giving us 4 total. He also hooked up a small mahi mahi which was exciting. Unfortunately the mahi wasn’t big enough to keep and was let loose.
This weekend, we also had a visit from Randy’s dad, Johnny, and his gal, April on their 42′ Jefferson called Sea Crazy. They only stayed 2 days before heading on the Key West. We enjoyed dinner out at Burdine’s on Saturday night and grilled sausages and yellow tail snapper Sunday. Stories were shared about their journey here over a few margaritas and it was a great time.