Favourite Dives: Tropical Hill

By Alex Ward

Maximum Depth: 18m / 60 ft Level: Easy, Relaxing

Tropical Hill, Carriacou

Tropical Hill is one of our staff’s favourite dives. Think of the classic image of a mountain – big peak, little peak? – now imagine it underwater, covered with wonderful marine life! Excellent visibility and a beautiful backdrop make this site a favourite for photographers.

Tropical Hill is located near the Southern tip of Carriacou, around 20 minutes boat ride from Hillsborough. Placed near a shallow cove, this site is a good spot for both divers and snorkellers. Surrounded by patch reef, the Tropical Hill pinnacle starts in around 18m / 60ft and rises to just 5m / 16ft below the surface.

A descent along the mooring line, brings us along the leeward side of the pinnacle. A quick scan of the sand surrounding the reef often reveals yellowhead jawfish “dancing” above their burrows. Watching them provides entertainment while we wait for all the divers in the group to complete their descent.

We usually start our dive by keeping the reef wall on our left hand side. Starting from the bottom, we slowly circle the pinnacle, in a spiral that takes us from our deepest depth to our safety stop. Along the way we look for octopus, lobsters, a variety of morays & snake eels, delicate cleaner shrimp, scorpion fish and nudibranchs.

Tropical Hill, Carriacou

The beauty of Tropical Hill is that each buddy pair can go along at their own pace, as everybody will come to the same point for their safety stop at the end of the dive. This means that divers get to spend more time observing their favourite creatures.

It’s also worth keeping an eye out into the blue, as occasionally we are joined by larger marine life, such as barracudas, eagle rays and stingrays, which hunt among the patches of reef alongside the pinnacle. Tropical Hill itself is home to large schools of snappers, grunts and sergeant majors.

Thousands and thousands of sergeant majors swirl above and all around us as we near the depth for our safety stop. When guiding dives at other sites we tend to stick to the 3 minutes, then ‘up’ kind of stop. Not so at Tropical Hill. Here we frequently draw out our stop time to 15 minutes and more, just for the pure enjoyment of seeing so much life swirling all around us.

For those who linger in the shallows, the rocky crevices of the pinnacle reveal a host of creatures: whole lobster villages, octopus, fire worms, Pederson cleaner shrimp, nimble spray crabs, filefish and juvenile rock beauties & angelfish.

Tropical Hill, Carriacou

Route variations:
We can also spend more time exploring the patch reef around the Tropical Hill pinnacle. Aside from the Yellowhead Jawfish, we can look for flounders, nudibranchs, snake eels, mantis shrimp and the myriad of juveniles that shelter on the reef.

About us: Deefer Diving have been established as the premier dive resort in Carriacou for over 7 years. Our friendly dive centre is run by divers for divers, and we pride ourselves on the number of our customers who return to us time after time.

For more information about diving in Carriacou, please visit our website, www.deeferdiving.com.