July 2

Tunnel with minnows at the Indians
I lazed around in bed for quite a while before getting up.

I woke up and journaled like usual then had breakfast. Breakfast was eggs, toast, and fruit for me, eggs, toast, and bacon for Joel.

We headed quickly off to the Indians to get a mooring. It seems that the moorings fill up fast then you have to wait. The snorkeling at the Indians is the best; beautiful coral and a multitude of fish. Huge schools of tangs, sargeant majors, yellowtails and a few others including a blue fish with a black head that I hadn't seen before.

One side of the Indians has a small channel you go through and you end up in a "room" that has an archway about 8' or so down. The tunnel is about as long as it is deep. Huge schools of little minis glitzed about. And the coral is technicolor. A very magical spot.

Green Turtle at Great Harbor

On the opposite side is a wall that goes down for about 30' - btw I'm lousy at estimating distances to take them all with a grain of salt. The wall is almost vertical with various colorful corals pasted on. If you swim to the end where the water is choppy you get to see the large schools of the non-mini fish.

We saw all this then decided to go into the room with the tunnel again. We enjoyed it for a while until a horde of people showed up and then we left.

Our next destination was the caves. We read a while before actually getting in the water. I don't get along that well with my snorkel and mask. After I've had it on for a while, all I want to do is rip it off, but I love the underwater panoramas so much I put up with it. But the rest let me at least recover a bit.

The snorkel at the caves was pleasant. There was a coral there - or maybe it is a weird anemone - I can't tell the difference. The coral was bright orange and looked like 1/2" flowers growing out of the rock. Very pretty.

We first went into the little cave farther away from the others. It had two branches; neither very deep. Even though you don't really need a flashlight, we brought one with us. This let us see a school of fish that were hiding in the dark - a group of copper sweepers.

While swimming towards the next cave we saw a spotted moray eel slithering along the coral. It was small only about 18" log. It found a nice hole and stuck its head out, opening and closing its mouth and basically looking menacing.

Coral at Great Harbor

Then it was off to the deep cave. I was glad to have a flashlight in this cave so I could see where I was going, though there was not much interesting inside it. It seemed that the little jellies that were floating around the water were blown in to the cave the got stuck. There were tons of them you had to swim through. Though they were just the little ones about 1-1 1/2" long and they didn't sting.

On the way back to the boat I watched the jellies closer. There were a couple of different kinds. The most beautiful had a set of lights down each side, each one smaller than a pinhead. Occasionally you could see them light up - or maybe they were just reflecting the light. It was hard to tell. But different ones had different color of lights. Some were yellow, red or blue-green.

As soon as we were back Ursula fed us some pizza she had made. I was hungry and ate quite a bit.

After lunch we half motored, half sailed to Great Harbor on Peter Island. We were going to anchor on the other side of the island, but the wind had picked up so we came here which is more protected.

Sunset behind Tortola

And for the third time of the day we donned our snorkel gear and swam about. This bay reminded me a lot of the last place we anchored - for snorkeling that is. It had individual coral heads and lots of pipe coral. We found a crab in a small old conch shell. When I picked it up he hid back inside it and we couldn't see him, but when I put it down you could see his legs poke out the bottom and the shell start to move. On the way back we saw a green turtle, a small one. It had its head inside a coral munching on something and didn't see us for a while. As soon as it saw us it took off; slightly circling so it could keep its eye on us before heading off for good.

The water in this bay is strange it was like snorkeling through snow. Little clear and white things floated in the water. I'm not quite sure what they were, maybe the same as the jellies we swam through earlier that day, but much smaller.

Joel and Theo spent the rest of the evening using the computer, mostly downloading photos and looking at them.

I told Joel to come out to photograph the sunset as the sun got lower. In the middle of the sunset we had dinner - shrimp curry and rice, with veggies for me. For dessert we had cheesecake and strawberry syrup and some left over chocolate cake. I couldn't finish it all, I was too stuffed.

Joel and I spent sometime up on the trampolines watching the stars start to come out. Until some clouds moved in and covered them all up.

The night was very, very windy. If we left the hatches open the wind would howl into them. Luckily we are semi protected from the wind in this bay, but it was still quite gusty and strong. The howling winds woke me up once in the middle of the night and I closed the upper hatch. What I didn't know was that Joel had already closed the side hatch so it became very hot by morning.

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Text and images © Copyright 2001 Joel and Daphne Gould. If there are any problems or questions email Daphne Gould.