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The Sea Sky

HONDURAS | Thursday, 12 August 2010 | Views [773] | Comments [2]

Last night we went for our first night scuba dive. Once the sun went down and darkness had set in, our boat pulled away from the Cross Creek dock and set out for our dive site. We ended up in a part of the reef called Eagle Ray Alley. I was a bit scared and excited at the same time to dive down into the dark water. As soon as we jumped in, our instructor, Tim, handed us flashlights for our journey. Next thing we knew we were deflating our BCDs and heading down. During the day, as you descend down into the water during the first colors of the spectrum start to disappear and you loose the red, orange and yellow hues. At night you don't experience this color loss so you can still see the vivid reds of the coral.

We made it down to a sand patch on the ocean floor and the three of us knelt down in a circle. There was one other instructor diving with us, but we ran out of flashlights so he just swam around us in the dark during our whole dive. Sitting on the bottom, we turned our lights off by pressing them against our bodies. We started waving our hands through the water to activate the bioluminescence of the floating plankton. There were little specks of light everywhere. The instructor without a flashlight was in the background dancing around so we could see the flashes of light outlining his entire figure. The longer we left the flashlights off, the brighter the lights seemed and it was like we were looking at a night sky filled with tiny stars.

We made our way back up, passing by the hills of coral and searching for creatures. As we moved the flashing plankton got bigger and brighter and were activated by just shining light on them. Our flashlights attracted sea lice and tiny fish that circled around the light. At one point there were so many that you could feel them hitting your hand holding the flashlight. There were even little red worms that we would see squirming around in the light. We ran into a few sting rays, a huge lobster and a parrot fish that was sound asleep. Tim told us that at night the parrot fish form a bubble around their bodies and if it's broken they can't make another one and have to stay awake all night. We were careful not to disturb the sleeping fish. I was really hoping to see an octopus on the dive, but I guess you just have to wait and see what the ocean wants to show you. Maybe one will show up on our next night dive.

As we came to the surface of the water, we all started feeling little stings from jellyfish floating around in the water. They must have been tiny, because the stinging wasn't bad and went away really soon after we got back on the boat. Another group of divers came back up onto the boat right after us and they must have hit a group of bigger jellyfish, because there stings turned into little welts all over their bodies. Everyone got back on board and we sat on the front of the boat to enjoy the ride back and take in the incredible experience we'd just had.

Tags: honduras, night dive, scuba diving, utila

Comments

1

Hi guys, I'm still figuring out this site, wanted to send you a message that we are following your adventures and are looking forward to our next skype opportunity! Hope your travels in Honduras are going smoothly, much love, Mom

  Gay Isis Aug 19, 2010 1:53 AM

2

I could almost feel the stings of the jelly fish myself...great adventure story....giving new meaning to the word, ..."vicarious!"

  Dad Isis Aug 20, 2010 2:50 AM

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