Thursday 5th

Today was the first of a couple of days where we split up into different groups for different activities. Wanting to make the most of the day ahead we rose and breakfasted early. Sarah headed out to play a round of golf with an even par on the first hole! Several others took the chance to relax at the hotel for the morning whilst another small group of Henry, Martin, Bruce, Adam, Laura and Charlie headed out to Pigeon Point to try their hand at paddle boarding.

For those that haven’t come across paddle boarding it is a sort of cross between surfing and kayaking where one uses a paddle but attempts to stand on an oversized surfboard. Charlie, an experienced hand, led the way and soon we were all up on our feet, ready to fall in again just as quickly! Paddling against the currents and strong winds was tough going at times but jumping in and out of the clear warm sea water and attempting to ride the waves back into the beach was immense fun. In this diarist’s opinion it was also a particularly good workout for shooters focusing on core stability and positional awareness, key attributes for the expert target shooter.

After an hour or so we paddle back to shore feeling shattered from the wind and surf. However, there was not much time to rest as we quickly returned to the hotel just in time to grab a sandwich before the first group of divers were due to head out for their try dive experience.

3 of the team were more experienced PADI certified divers and had booked themselves into a more difficult/interesting dive for tomorrow morning so they spent the afternoon exploring town and searching out good snorkelling spots for the others tomorrow.

Another group led by Turbo had chartered a couple of small skiffs with guides to go out on a sea fishing excursion for which I must handover to a guest diarist:

6 intrepid explorers decided to go fishing but unfortunately ‘Hard Play’ was stuck in Grenada by a sub tropical storm. Undeterred, Turbo organised 3 local skiffs to take Stangroom, Morley, Daw, PCS, Heales and Turbo out for the afternoon.

Robson Green eat your heart out. The competition was on! Biggest fish, most fish and heaviest total haul. Capt Hook, Ricardo and Anaconda took the team out … suffice to say the total beginners out fished the Pros – Turbo and Nigel in terms of numbers but not size … Turbo landing a 15 pound Dorado.

Biggest fish was going to be Morley’s 30 pound tuna, but a ten foot black tipped reef shark had other ideas and Andrew was left with about 4 pound of tuna head on the end of his hook!

Most fish caught – Andy Daw and Andrew Morley, most species caught by Chris Heales and Phil Chapman-Sheath.

Everyone ended up a winner. Great fun had by all, thanks to Pops Tours for a great afternoon.

Meanwhile the first group of beginner divers were collected from the hotel and taken to near by Crown Reef for their try dive experience. This involved an introduction to scuba diving, going through all the necessary safety precautions and basic training in a sheltered lagoon before being taken out to a nearby reef, helped to descend slowly to around 10 meters and then led on a guided tour for around 30 minutes. Sadly two of today’s group, Laura and Henry, struggled with equalising the pressure in their ears and could not complete the full guided tour. However, the others were able to enjoy seeing a variety of corals and sea life. Despite not being able to complete the full dive, for this diarist even the opportunity of being able to breath under water for the first time, was a worthwhile experience.

Returning to the hotel we lazed by the pool awaiting the fishermen’s triumphant return before the now customary sundowners at 7 o’clock. After sundowners we headed to nearby Honey’s restaurant in the hope of some goat curry. Sadly the curry was not available but we were rewarded with some excellent fish and seafood instead. After making friends with the owners and agreeing to return tomorrow when they promised the goat curry would be back on, we headed back to the hotel for a swift night cap and bed.

Thursday 5th October