Bright and early staff members prepared the boat for a fun day of diving. Aboard, some eager students geared up for their first two open water dives in the ocean. Our first dive site started in a sand patch where the students demonstrated skills. The rest of the group ventured further on to Starfish Garden. Amongst the plentiful panamic cushion seastars we came across a large blunthead triggerfish. Graysbys were perched in crevices, and schools of small wrasse scattered around us. A porcupine fish was seen hanging out near a boulder. At one point I swam right over a panamic green moray eel!

During a relaxing surface interval we rehydrated and snacked on fresh pineapple and watermelon. Next stop was Canyon Reef. Here, we were treated to more spectacular wildlife. JT, the instructor and guide on board, spotted a colorful nudibranch strolling around on the sea floor. We even caught a glimpse of a sea turtle before it detected our presence. All around us in the distance, butterflyfish were darting about. Damselfish curiously approached and retreated.

Calm seas and a multitude of marine life encounters have made the first dive of the season a successful one! Overall it was a beautiful day full of fun diving and great company.We are looking forward to an incredible season ahead filled with friends, family, good times, and of course lots of diving!