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Dive Review of Explorer Ventures -- T&C Explorer II in
Turks and Caicos

Explorer Ventures -- T&C Explorer II: "Hot Water", Sep, 2016,

by John Miller, TX, US (Contributor Contributor 16 reports with 4 Helpful votes). Report 9132.

No photos available at this time

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 3 stars Food 3 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity 4 stars
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 3 stars
Beginners 3 stars
Advanced 3 stars
Comments This was a special trip for ScubaPro dealers with on-board training in regulator repair and servicing. I had already been certified and doing repairs but wanted my wife, who serves as my PADI 5 Star IDC dive shop's manager to get the training for equipment intake purposes.

It was our third live-a-board trip to T&C, with the first on Agressor in November 2009 and then again in 2012 on the same Agressor.

We flew AA in First Class for the extra baggage allowance of three 70 lb checked bags as one bag was for the tools and regulators ScubaPro had sent before hand for us to bring. We flew from Lubbock, to Dallas and then overnighted in Charlotte, NC before the final leg to T&C, where we were met by a taxi van and taken to the Caicos Marina to board the Explorer. Cost of the taxi for wife and I was $20 and our six bags.

The Explorer was great, but don't get the room next to the kitchen as the dining room is right there as well and lots of noise. The staff was outstanding and lots of fun. The food was good, but not as great as we were accustomed to on the T7C Aggressor.

The diving was a disappointment and let me explain why. In November 2009 the water temp recorded in my dive log was 76 degrees F. Most of the same dive sites this year in September was 86-87 degrees F by the same dive computer I used in 2009. That is an alarming 10 degrees warmer and far above the 78 degrees best for coral. Along with sand covering the coral from recent storms I believe the higher temps are killing the coral and the marine life that depends on it has left. A true example of the effects of global warming or climate change as your preference to call it - but it is real and measurable.

Sad to say, we probably won't spend the money to return for a fourth trip in the future.

We woke up a week later at 5 am for a 8:20 am boarding for our first class flight home on AA. But when we got to the airport we discovered the park plane, but a three hour departure delay for "crew rest" reason. That caused our original connection in Miami to be missed as well so they rebooked us in Economy for a Miami connecting flight to Dallas. Now remember, we each had three heavy bags we were booked and those are free on AA when traveling Business/First and you are allowed 70 pounds each. But the staff charged us $150 each for two bags or a total of $300 because the Miami to DFW leg was in Economy. We argued and argued with the T&C AA ticket staff and being fed up decided to settle the matter when we got home.

Meanwhile our flight to Miami landed and while within a few hundred yards of the gate, spent 1.5 hours on the tarmac due to thunderstorms and lighting. Global entry made getting back into the states painless, except my camera bag didn't come up the ramp in baggage claim and after waiting and waiting found it in a special baggage claim area for large items (mind you this case could have been taken on as hand-carried). Back on our connecting flight to DFW and again, 15 late departure due to storms. Got into DFW gate A16 and our connection to Lubbock was at A8, so not so far to go on a run with couple small backpacks, but we are 68 years old. We had less than 5 minutes and with everyone taking their sweet time getting off the plane when I made it to A8 gate they had just closed the door and wouldn't open it for us to get on. Upset was a polite explanation for my attitude at that point. But a night at the Grand Hyatt and dinner in their restraurant, along with fabulous beds did a lot for my attitude, along with the margeritta on the rocks.

Next morning, back through TSA Pre-Check, breakfast in the airport and boarding with our economy tickets we discovered we were upgraded to First Class again for the final leg.

I was not only learning more about servicing ScubaPro equipment, but testing a new Cannon video camera in a L&M housing with L&M strobes for our trip to Truk in December.

One final note. Explorer charged $150 each for our week of diving EAN32 along with a heavy hotel tax and fuel surcharge - all of which caught us by surprise and for the two of us that amounted to an extra $500 or so.
Websites Explorer Ventures -- T&C Explorer II   

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 501-1000 dives
Where else diving Wakaobi, Figi, Roatan, Tobago, Cozumel, Cayman, Philappines, Belize
Closest Airport Getting There American Airlines

Dive Conditions

Weather cloudy Seas calm, currents
Water Temp 86-87°F / 30-31°C Wetsuit Thickness 1
Water Visibility 80-100 Ft/ 24-30 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions Safety stops. Solo diving permited with proper certification and equipment but our entire group were expert divers and shop owners.
Liveaboard? yes Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

Sharks Lots Mantas 1 or 2
Dolphins 1 or 2 Whale Sharks None
Turtles 1 or 2 Whales None
Corals 3 stars Tropical Fish 3 stars
Small Critters 2 stars Large Fish 2 stars
Large Pelagics 1 stars

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter 4 stars Boat Facilities 4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities 3 stars
UW Photo Comments Large camera table, plenty of power for charging. Large freshwater camera water tank, air hoses and towels on the camera table. Staff did excellent job of assisting with getting large camera rigs in and out of water and into the rise tank.
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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