CUBA TRAVEL JOURNAL

Diving Cayo Breton & Cayo Alcatracito

July 11, 1998 11:45am

The fishing boats left at 6:30 this morning after working until 10:00 last night - one hell of a long day.

I plotted three possible dive sites in the "Archipelago de los Jardines de la Reina" - The Queens' Garden.

 
    Photo Courtesy of C. Pritchard

The first site, just south of Cayo Breton was exceptional. Once on the reef at sixty feet I secured a lift bag to the anchor to use later rather than pulling the anchor and one hundred feet of chain up by hand.

  I followed some sand fingers and found a very vibrant reef. Lots of schooling small fish and plenty of grouper, amberjacks and barracuda - all very large.

One particularly large grouper was startled by my presence and rushed me before hiding in a hole.

I continued along the sand finger and came to the wall at ninety feet. It sloped steeply down with coral for the first thirty feet or so.

On the way back to the anchor, I encountered a turtle and a southern stingray attempting to feed among the coral. This dive site has been christened "Grouper Hole".

 

July 11, 1998 3:30pm

We motored on to Cayo Alcatracito to my next dive selection. Anchored near the beach was "Le Nicholas IV" of Montreal. We met the couple who are traveling this sail catamaran in the marina at Cienfuegos. They left three days before us, bound for Santiago.

They came around the reef in a small skiff and we agreed to moor near them for the night.

  My dive was outstanding! Chris dropped the anchor right on the wall which is far more dramatic than the one west of here. The corals and sponges are huge and continue down the wall as far as I could see. While setting the lift bag to the anchor, a small black tip shark swam the wall below me. Hence the name, "Shark Bight"!

1998 John Petrak

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