Randy's Gazebo

While it is possible to reach Randy's Gazebo from the entry at Bloody Bay Dive Resort (see Great Wall West/Great Wall East/Ringer's Wall), it is a very long swim from there which is normally against the current.  Instead, there is a much nicer access point which is slightly upstream from Randy's Gazebo.  Starting at the intersection of North Coast Road and Spot Bay Road (at the "pizza man's house"), go east for 0.9 miles.  At 0.6 miles you should reach the drive to Bloody Bay Dive Resort.  A few hundred feet after that there is another drive off towards shore--one which I leads to shore but which is not a particularly good entry point.  The drive you want is that next one.  Another way of describing this drive is that it is the first one you will reach proceeding west after going around the bend in front of the blue roof house ("Bloody Bay House") by Mixing Bowl.  This is a long, narrow drive which is quite close to sea grapes on the west side of the drive.  The ground is quite firm, and I've never been stuck on this driveway.  There is room at the beach to turn around, but I wouldn't advise doing that unless you have 4WD.  

When you get near the waterline, take a look at the two mooring balls you see out in front of you.  The large mooring ball to your left, on a heading of about 330, is Randy's Gazebo.  The ball off to your right, at about 020, is Donna's Delight.  Then the next ball to the east from Donna's Delight is Marilyn's Cut.  All three sites can be accessed from this entry point.

The walk out towards Randy's is quite easy, but when you get to about 4'-5'  of depth you will encounter scattered coral heads which come very close to the surface.  It is an easy matter to walk around these--when you can see them.  But if the waves are big and breaking inshore, the water may be too foamy to spot the coral heads.  If that's the case, I think it might be best to save this one for a calmer day.  Once you get past those coral heads there are no further obstacles, but it would not be a pleasant experience to get slammed into one of those coral heads by a breaking wave or strong surge.

As you swim towards the mooring ball at Randy's you will come up on a large canyon in the wall.  Following is my best freehand attempt at a plan view of this site:

The base of the mooring line is near the bottom center of this drawing,  You will probably want to start your exploration of this site by descending at the base of the canyon at the lower left above.  If you want, you may go down the chimney I have labeled.  The entrance is quite obvious, and the chimney is plenty wide enough to accommodate the largest diver.  The top starts at about 40', and this vertical chimney will let you out at around 80.  There is a slight bend on the way down, so if you go head first you will need to position yourself on the way down so that you can bend at the waste to go around the bend.  Try it...it's fun! 

When you reach the bottom of the canyon, head northeast along the wall and go out towards the deep blue.  This is not a completely sheer wall, but it is quite steep--perhaps averaging a 70 degree slope, or more.  I like to fallow the wall at between 80' and 100' as I head east on the wall towards the gazebo.  Finally you will look up and see the gazebo sitting out from the wall on a huge coral pedestal.  The gazebo is a large coral archway facing NW/SE.  The base is at about 70', and the opening through the archway is perhaps 8-'10'.  I like to stay down below the gazebo as I explore around the base of the pedestal, then come up the canyon behind it until I am at about 70'/  The view in front of you is surely one of the most picturesque sights on Little Cayman.  The deep blue is framed by the archway of the gazebo, thus making this an ideal spot for taking shots of your dive buddy.  To get the idea, mentally insert an image of your favorite dive buddy into the center of this:

 

From the back of the gazebo, you can go through it and check out all the sponges living around the gazebo.  Then head back to the southwest at about 60'.  Very shortly you will see a big ledge above you at about 50'.  Go up on top of that ledge and check out the masses of schooling fish there.  There are always large numbers of French Grunts, Schoolmasters, Yellow Goatfish, Mahogany Snapper, etc.  They are totally used to divers swimming in their midst, so they are unlikely to scatter as you fly in. 

Continuing on into the canyon where you entered earlier, look up on your left, about 20' before the entrance to the chimney.  From below you might not notice that behind those big rocks you see there is a long, narrow cavern which leads back to a nice little swim-through.  Go to the far western end of that cavern and scoot over the rocks, then turn back to the east and follow your way under the ledge.  The swim-through is easy to navigate, and it leads to a vertical opening in the hardpan at around 30'.  After you come up this opening, look back at the hardpan over the swim-through and the ledge you just traversed and note all the Champaign-like bubbles coming through the small fissures in the the coral.

The area on the surface of the hardpan is just as exciting to interesting to explore as the wall was earlier.  This is aquarium diving, with an abundance of both juvenile and adult reef fish. 

When it's time to head back to shore, go on the reciprocal course of 150.  It's not a difficult swim by any means, and I often have to stop when I get to 10' to let the 3 minute stop that started at 20' time out.  When you do poke your head up, it still looks like a long way to the shore, but you will be walking most of that distance.  

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