DANO Pendygrasse

odds and ends from an unusual life

Back in BC. Out of the frying pan...

Hi friends,

Well life certainly doesn’t pull any punches when it wants to get good and busy on you, does it? 2 weeks ago I was sneaking a quick last dive in on the Cordelia Banks in Roatan, a week later I was looking at a contract with Monster Energy Canada, and a few days later I’m on a plane to spend the week with some of the best wakeboarders in the world on a 100 foot long houseboat. Ok... Meanwhile I am still trying to catch up with all the interesting opportunities that have arisen from the Cordelia Banks photos, which has been surprising but fantastic.

Here are a couple highlights from the week. I don’t shoot wake on the regular so I was trying to bring something different to it than what I see in the magazines. I didn’t come close to trying all the things I had in mind. Next time. The wakeboarders sure know how to have a good time. There were lots of late nights and fun stories. Having your own Chef and Mixologist doesn’t hurt either...

Next, I’m catching up at home for a bit and then trying to sneak a day of flyfishing in before Crankworx and Monster Energy week at the Camp of Champions. Doesn’t look like life will be slowing down anytime soon...

Enjoy,

Dano.


supplies, part one.

supplies, part two.

das boat.

Gettin’ warmed up. Shane Bonifay.

Craven along for the ride, doin his best impression of Huck Finn.

Waterslide action.

Henshaw goes off the top rope.

Shane, method style.

Splashing about.

Mel and Tom watching Bob.

Mel getting some.

Bob spinnin’ and flyin’.

Tom.

Henshaw.

Shane.

Shawn Watson.

Parties are always better when Darryl is on board.

Henshaw again.

Balzer with a little balance beam over a creek.

Balzer on the wake skate at dusk.

wildlife

Sonni on the tow boat.

Shane staying warm.

Dusty air to body jar on the rail.

Shane’s method.

Nicest guy you ever wanna meet, Tom on the last morning.

Balzer watches Dusty’s pass.

Balzer sneaks one last run in on the wakeskate.

The man, the myth, James Balzer.
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Cordelia Banks.

Hello friends,

I’ve been back from Roatan for just a few days but life is moving incredibly quickly. It’s always like this when good things happen, they tend to happen in clusters and it’s all you can do just to keep up. I’m holding on for the ride!

When I was in the water waiting to shoot the shark release, I had some time with Ian Drysdale from healthyreefs.org and we spent it discussing the Cordelia Banks on the South side of Roatan. Recently discovered, the reef there is largely made up of staghorn coral which went through a disastrous decline due to disease in the 80’s. It’s in the crosshairs of the conservation movement because due to the healthy population of staghorn and its proximity to deep water currents, there is speculation that these reefs maybe be responsible for repopulating the staghorn population throughout the entire Caribbean. Impressive. The Cordelia Banks are a rich environment for fish as well. Grouper have been seen to use the area as a spawning aggregation site and the reef is an ideal nursery for juvenile fish.

Cordelia is also located less than a kilometre away from the Coxen Hole cruise ship dock, and about 7 kilometres from the new massive cruise ship facility at Mahogany Bay. 3 or 4 hundred times a year, thousand foot long cruise ships come within striking distance of this fragile ecosystem. There is evidence of boat strikes on the reef, but still they manage to flourish. Also, Coxen Hole is the largest population centre on the island and much of the pollution filters through the reef.

So Ian invited me to come dive Cordelia to get a sense of it for myself and shoot some photos. We’re going to try to get these out there and raise some awareness to help protect what could end up being a critical resource in the health of coral in the Caribbean. We had a small window one morning between high winds and conditions weren’t ideal, but I was lucky enough to get a look at this amazing ecosystem. Take a look.

D.


One windy boat ride. Ian smiles while Nic from the Roatan Marine Park prepares his kit.

Ian inspects a small growth of staghorn.

This coral may be as little as two or three years old.

Fields of the stuff. A rare sight these days.

And a nursery for many fish species.

Most of the healthiest parts of the reef are in less than 10 feet of water.
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