• Steven Hopkinson

Blustery with a chance of sargassum



So it's been windy of late -- blustery as the old timers say, with sustained gusts in the 20's-30's from the east. So we've been double and triple checking the dock lines and hoping for it to calm down so we can get out of the marina and go take some guests sailing in the Bay Islands of Honduras (Roatan, Utila, Guanaja, and Cayos Cochinos). We hate cancelling sailing excursion due to poor weather, but we want all of our guests to have a good time in safe conditions.




We've been using the time off to get some much needed but neglected tasks done like using barnacle buster on our AC system. With the sargassum once again choking the bay in Parrot Tree, our AC strainer was full of seaweed. It's smelly, disgusting and probably clogging up most of our lines, so hopefully the barnacle buster will work to clear some of that out and keep us from having to back-flush the system every time we go out. There have been record-breaking amounts of sargassum washing up ashore throughout the Caribbean, and while there are a number of theories as to what is causing the increased blooming of this brown seaweed, what's clear to us is that it stinks, it clogs up all of our strainers and in general makes life a bit less ideal. Call it Caribbean World Problems if you want, but try walking past the mangroves in Parrot Tree after a big influx of sargassum. The smell is so nasty, so thick you can taste it.





We've also been diving because what's better than soaring across the top of the waves? Why sinking beneath them and exploring the second largest barrier reef system in the world. We've been hitting some choice spots in West End and West Bay up from our friend's dinghy (since ours was destroyed), having a blast seeing turtles, rays, eels, and thousands of varieties of fish.





One of my favorites is the trumpetfish. I'm not a marine biologist, but I wonder what makes that shape evolutionary advantageous.





Like one of our favorites, the shy little Trunkfish.




And FileFish.





And Cowfish. I always take out my reg and let out a ragged cry of MOOOO when I see those little guys.





And Grouper. Even though they're just following us because some misguided divers persist in feeding lionfish to them despite the fact that it does nothing more than teach them that divers have food.





We're also blessed by the really vibrant coral, sponges, and all the myriad of marine life surrounding the beautiful Bay Islands.



Like crabs. I mean, come on, look at the size of those claws!



Giant Barrel Sponges pretty much speak for themselves.





Tomorrow we're gonna go out with our friends over at Splash Inn because sometimes you just need to take a break from the rigors of dinghy diving and dive from a nice big old resort boat. It's great to do it all on our own, but it's also nice to let someone else drive the dive boat every now and then. Hopefully we'll be able to do one of the cool sites we've been wanting to explore like Spooky Channel or Hole in the Wall. It'll depend on the weather, like everything else here in the tropics.





Hopefully we'll be able to chase some spotted eagle rays, like we did on a recent sailing charter to Port Royal with a couple of our new friends from West Bay.


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