Michael McFadyen's Scuba Diving Web Site
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About Me
My Diving
Web Links - Dive Clubs
St George Scuba Club
Some of my Best Photos
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Dive Sites
Sydney Reef Dive Sites
Sydney Shipwrecks
Kelly Talking on ABC Sydney about Shipwrecks
NSW Dive Sites
Sydney Shipwreck Summary
NSW Shipwreck GPS/Marks
Australian Dive Sites
Overseas Dive Sites
Aircraft I have Dived
Old Bottles

Dive Related Equipment
Shearwater Predator and Heinrichs Weikamp OSTC 2N
Uwatec Aladin Dive Computers
Apollo AV1 Underwater Scooter
Bauer Compressor
DIY Oxygen Stick - Nitrox
GoPro HD Hero Video Camera
My Camera Setup
Purchase of New Dive Boat
Our Dive Boat - Mak Cat
Our Old Dive Boat - Le Scat
My Dive Gear
GPS and Diving
Make Your Own Car Tank Rack

Marine Life
Rarer Sydney Marine Life
Bare Island Pygmy Pipe Horses
Bare Island Sea Horses
Bare Island Nudibranchs
Bare Island Marine Life
Encounter with Southern Right Whale and Calf

Other Dive Info
How Weather Affects Diving in Sydney
Visibility and Wave Averages in Sydney
Waves and Diving
Diving Weather and Sea Conditions
Tide Tables
Dive Accidents and Incidents
Dive Book Reviews
Site Map
Noel Hitchins 1951-2005
Lloyd Bridges - Mike Nelson in Sea Hunt
Our Yachting Adventures
Below is a list of links to the main pages about our yacht, Catlypso and our Our Yachting Adventures:
  • Purchase of Catlypso
  • Details about Catlypso
  • Cleaning/Repairing Catlypso
  • Our Yachting Adventures.
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    Michael and Kelly's 4WD Trips
    Click here for a list of our Four Wheel Drive and Camping Trips.
    Current Kareela Weather
    A summary of the current weather conditions at our house at Kareela, Sydney, is below. Click here for more Detailed Diving Weather and Conditions. Weather from Michael McFadyen's Tempe Weather Station

    Conditions at
    23:49 on 23/1/17

    Temperature 25.6°C
    Humidity 65.0%
    Barometer 1003.4hPa
    Rate -0.3hPa/hr
    Wind Speed: 0 km/hr
    Wind Direction S
    Rainfall for Today 0.0mm
    Rainfall last hour 0.0 mm
    Rainfall last 24 hours 0.0 mm
    Rainfall at Start of Month 814.6 mm
    Rainfall this Year 827.0 mm
    Today's Extremes
    High Temperature 31.2°C at 15:48
    Low Temperature 20.9°C at 6:27
    Peak Wind Gust 0km/hr at 0:00
    Weather from Michael McFadyen's Kirrawee Weather Station
    Yesterday's Extremes
    High Temperature 27.5°C at 17:11
    Low Temperature 19.8°C at 6:29
    Rainfall at Start of Yesterday 827.0 mm
    Rainfall at End of Yesterday 827.0 mm
    Weather from Michael McFadyen's Tempe Weather Station
    Astronomical Data
    Sunrise 5:06
    Sunset 19:05
    Moonrise 1:09
    Moonset 15:04

    Home Brewing
    Click here for an article about Home Brewing.
    I established this Web Site about scuba diving in Sydney, NSW, Australia and the South Pacific, as well as a few other places, in June 1996.

    Since then it has gone through a few different versions. This latest version is the fourth and was completed in July 2006.

    The site has grown from a few pages to well over 900 separate pages. More than 650 dives are covered, mostly in detail and most with photographs and some with maps.

    I am fairly confident that this is not only the largest diving related web site in the World, it also has more hits than any diving related web site in Australia.

    This site is a non-commercial site and is unrelated to any dive organisation. It is purely here to provide divers with an information source to increase their enjoyment of scuba diving, shipwrecks and marine life in general. I hope that my experiences can help you when you are planning a dive trip, whether it is locally in Sydney, New South Wales, somewhere else in Australia or the Pacific Ocean region.

    Any and all comments are welcome, as is any information to enhance the pages, especially more information about ships or shipwrecks or corrections to pages.

    I have also included some articles on non-diving related interests, especially four wheel driving and camping. Starting 2014 it will have information about our yacht, a Lightwave 38 catamaran.


    This site is best viewed using a screen sized at 1024 x 768 pixels. If you use a smaller screen, some photographs may force a page that extends off the screen and cause printing problems. I cannot avoid this problem. It may also cause some photos to run over top of text. If you find any of these, please let me know as I should be able to fix.

    In addition, some wide screen monitors (newer laptops especially) may have a screen that is too wide for the page and this may cause photos to appear in strange places. If you find this, let me know and I will see if I can fix.

    I have now added a Search facility to the site. You can access this by clicking on Search on the menu at the top of the page.

    Sydney Dive Site Hints
    "The SS Undola has great fishlife"
    My Recent Dives - September & October 2018

    1 September 2018 - M & K Reef

    Huge seas during week but flat as today. Wind light but came up as we surfaced, 20 kts W. Rough trip back across Botany Bay. Water very dirty on top but quite good on bottom (7-10 m), better than expected. We were a bit deeper than normal on 27 m wall. Went S and then back to N. Kelly found an eel and a red pygmy pipehorse. Quite a few species of nudibranch as well. At one stage a lot of silver sweep came in around us. A better dive than we expected. Visibility fair.   

    15 September 2018 - Middle Ground

    Could not dive last week due to clogged ears. Was supposed to be very strong N or NW winds from about 8, but virtually no wind at all. A bit of a short NE swell but okay, no current. Anchored on NW corner. Went around reef, visibility 15 to 20 m. Three wobbegong sharks, some PJs, no blue devilfish. Quite a few large seapike and many yellowtail. A really good dive. Visibility very good.

    15 September 2018 - Barrens HUt/The Split

    Club boat dive, two boats. Little wind but a large NE swell every now and then. A bit surgy on bottom. Not as good viz as Saturday, but pretty good. Thought Les had decided to not dive as after 6 mins he was still not on bottom. He finally turned up it appears and dived around anchor. Went up Split to N, 2 donut nembrothas. Lots of silver sweep and one-spot pullers here. Back on reef edge to Cave and back to anchor. A few black reef leatherjackets, a medium cuttlefish, a dozen bastard trumpeters and some red morwong in usual spots. Very nice dive. Visibility very good. 

    22 September 2018 - Voodoo

    Club boat dive, 3 boats 13 divers. Little wind, flat seas, no current but some surge (17 sec period from SW at times). Went E for 12 mins and then back to anchor. Saw a few silver sweep and one-spot pullers. On the way back saw a small white firefish. A large moasic leatherjacket, some black reef leatherjackets. Kelly found a yellow big belly seahorse on a sea tulip. A really nice dive, could see divers on the bottom at 26 m from safety stop. Visibility very good.

    26 September 2018 - Middle Ground

    Club boat dive. Was raining heavily on way to ramp but stopped as we loaded boat. No further rain! Anchored second go, no wind then but a little later, smooth sea but a large SE swell every few minutes. Slight current from N. Anchored just off NW corner, went around as usual. no wobbegongs, a few Port Jackson sharks, one small cuttlefish. Some large seapike and yellowtail in NE corner. Very nice dive, but a bit dark due to very overcast skies. Visibility very good.

    3 October 2018 - Barrens Hut/The Split 

    Club boat dive. Little wind from NW and no current but a little swell from NE. Very dirty on top but almost a degree warmer than bottom. Viz over 15 m on bottom. Anchor came free as we went down and had to jam in on reef edge, moved a bit again by itself. Lots of yellowtail near anchor, went up The Split, one donut nembrotha just outside. Could hear humpback whales most of dive. Back to anchor then The Cave, full of silver sweep. Back up the crack, quite a few red morwong and bastard trumpeters. Also some nice six-spined and black reef leatherjackets along the way and a few large blue morwong. A very nice dive again. Visibility very good.

    9 October 2018 - Marley Point

    Club boat dive, a day early due to bad forecast for Wednesday. Winds of last 6 days gone and sea only slight swell. No wind and very slight current from NE. Water almost 4 degrees warmer than last week (18.9C)! Viz at least 15 m. Went NE first, lots of Port Jackson sharks, trevally and yellowtail and some leatherjackets. Coming back shallower, plenty of luderick and a couple of small blackfish. Saw about 10 medium kingfish near anchor. Back to W, huge numbers of ladder-finned pomfrets, yellowtail, trevally all over the place. Others saw more kingfish and a large bullray. Excellent dive. Visibility very good.

    13 October 2018 - Pizza Reef

    After big seas and strong winds last 3 days, not too bad today, but wind from S rather than E and ended up 12-15 kt rather than 10 kts. Also SE and NE swells and very slight current from N. Anchored on E side of reef. Went counter-clockwise as normal. Saw a pineapplefish near cave, lots of black reef leatherjackets all over the place and a blue morwong on the way. At cave only a few bastard trumpeters as well as a few red morwong. On S side, three donut nembrothas on low rock off reef. Back to anchor via the middle section. Very nice dive, a bit surgy on E side but okay. Visibility good.

    Click here to see details of dives including profiles.

    For more details about these dives and other dives this year, click here.
    Michael on 01 September 2018 13:00 · Print
    My Recent Dives - July & August 2018

    1 July 2018 - Henry Head

    Club boat dive, two boats. Took new member and new diver Paul diving. For only 18 dives, very good. Incoming tide and visibility 15 m, 17.0C. Drifted in on tide, saw 2 sea dragons, 2 PPH (1 tiny), a few nice nudibranchs, a butterflyfish. Lots of yellowtail in spots. Nice dive. Visibility very good.

    4 July 2018 - Barrens Hut/The Split

    Club boat dive, two boats. Very large swell, average 2.4 m with 4.2 m highest. Had to go right around bommie as breaking right between there and mainland. Westerly wind and some surge on bottom but not too bad. Anchored at S end of Split. Went to Tunnel and then Cave. Back to anchor and Paul and I went up Split and back. Lots of bastard trumpeters, some red and blue morwong, lots of black reef leatherjackets. Also some PJs. Pretty good dive considering the swell. Saw a few humpback whales, one surfaced only 50 m from us. Visibility good.

    7 July 2018 - Bare Island Deep Wall

    Cancelled club boat dive due to forecast very strong W winds but they came late and we could have dived. Went in off W point to wall and back normal way. Lots of PJs, Kelly found two very small PPH. We saw 5 RIF, all over the place. Some pink okenias and pink flabellinas. Plenty of bream and some small snapper. A small wobbegong, a very friendly blue groper and more. Despite it being low tide, visibility was good.

    11 July 2018 - Pizza Reef

    Club boat dive, 2 boats, 9 divers. Huge seas two days ago (9+m) but average today less than 2. Little wind and no current. Stacks of whales seen and could hear them all through the dive, very loudly at times. First dive with drysuit since 2014, new neoprene seals. No leaks! A bit surgy on bottom, but better than expected as was visibility (8 m). Went right around, lots of bastard trumpeters outside cave, hundreds of seapike, one-spot pullers and silver sweep at southern end. Quite a few yellow-finned leatherjackets and the usual black reef leatherjackets. Half expected to see a whale! A really nice dive. Visibility fair.

    14 July 2018 - Shiprock

    Club shore dive. Seas too big to take boat out. Quite dirty considering how clean the water in Port Hacking has been. Did not see a single nudibranch! Saw one pineapplefish and also a frogfish. Lots of leatherjackets, one small butterflyfish, some small surgeonfish (and big ones) and many bream. At the north end dozens of large sand whiting. Only a reasonable dive, no water in suit so looks like it is all okay. Visibility poor.

    25 July 2018 - Fish Rock Cave - Fish and Chips

    No wind, flat seas and only a slight current. Went out to F&C, saw at least 10 GNS on the way there and back, mostly in the main gutter. Two were very large pregnant females, one with a white mark on right side of body. Also a shovel-nose ray. Plenty of yellowtail, silver sweep and bream near F&C. Then went towards the shallow entrance to cave. Saw about another 8 GNS. Back to mooring area before ascending. Great dive. Visibility very good.

    25 July 2018 - Fish Rock Cave - Shallow Entrance

    Saw more humpback whales in surface interval and after the dive. This time went to the shallow entrance to cave. Saw at least 30 GNS on the way and in the gutter and cave. Found two teeth as well. Spent a little time in mouth of cave before heading deeper again and then drifting back with current to mooring. Used a bit more air as had to fight current a few times. Back around mooring area before ascending. Fantastic dive. Visibility very good.

    26 July 2018 - Fish Rock Cave - Fish and Chips

    First part of dive similar to yesterday, then cut across towards Black Forest and then towards Shallow Entrance and back to mooring. Less sharks than yesterday in main gutter, but a couple in blind gutter and on the outside. Also some long-finned bannerfish, Moorish idols and one small clownfish. Not as many fish out at F&C. A few very inquisitive blue gropers as well. Water a bit colder (16.2 v 16.9) and also cleaner in spots. Nice dive. Visibility very good.

    26 July 2018 - Fish Rock Cave - Western Drift

    Very little current. Started at The Pinnacle and went S into Colorado Passage. No sharks there but a few kingfish and other fish. Came back to The Pinnacle and then went around it on the south and east side then south along the western slope. So many fish. Baitfish and lots of other species, all being harassed by hundreds of large kingfish and a seal. Seal came down past us twice. Back towards Shallow Entrance a huge school of bannerfish and then plenty of GNS (some along the way as well). Also quite a few bullrays, including one huge one. Two eagle rays early on and then another three near cave. Then back to mooring and more GNS. Brilliant dive. Visibility good to very good and excellent near mooring.

    27 July 2018 - Fish Rock Cave - Western Drift

    Calm as last two days. We went in again at The Pinnacle and after swimming around it, headed S. Not as many fish or kingfish today, no seal, but five Queensland gropers, altogether. One was huge. Quite a few GNS and over a hundred wobbegong sharks. A medium sized bullray and heaps of long-finned bannerfish like yesterday. In the Shallow Entrance Gutter, heaps of sharks, at least 30. Then back to S mooring. Another fantastic dive. Visibility very good, but darker as a bit cloudy.

    27 July 2018 - Fish Rock Cave - Black Forest

    Went from mooring to SW to wall, then followed this SE to near Black Forest. Lots of black coral trees, far more than the last time I went out here. Then went over the ridge to NE and into the Blind Gutter, amazed that we were only at the end of it! Saw the loggerhead turtle again. Then to Main Gutter and over to Fish & Chips. Little fish action here at all. Came back via the Deep Entrance Gutter and Main Gutter. No GNS seen at all. Then towards Shallow Entrance, some GNS seen, batfish and more. Very good dive. Visibility very good.

    8 August 2018 - Bare Island Deep Wall

    Boat out of action due to longer than expected repairs to steering so did a shore dive with Jason. Millpond seas and little wind at start, but stronger W later. Forgot my weight pockets first go, so had to get out and go and get them, idiot! Went from W point to wall and then back normal way. No RIF, PPH and hardly any nudibranchs. Lots of PJ and horned sharks, a few small cuttlefish, some cowfish but that is about all. If not for the visibility, would have been a rotten dive. No idea where everything has gone, but much colder than last ocean or near ocean dive in Sydney 3 weeks ago, 14.8C v 16.6C. Visibility very good.

    14 August 2018 - Inscription Point

    Flat seas and little wind. Went in a bit after high tide, very clean and warmer than last week (15.4C). Not a lot seen really, one sea dragon, one purple-lined nembrotha, a few other species of nudibranch. Did not seen any of the grey nurse sharks that have been seen here over the past month. Despite this, better than staying at home! Visibility very good.

    15 August 2018 - The Balcony

    Club boat dive. Strong NW wind but flat here. First dive here for over 4 years. Went along sand edge to NE and then across to main wall and into The Cutting area. Back to the main part of dive. Thousands of yellowtail, one spot pullers and lots of ladder-finned pomfrets. A few horned and Port Jackson sharks as well. A few blackfish up high near breaking water. Back to anchor and still lots of fish, including a large school of old wives. Water cold (14.6C) but still a great dive. Visibility very good.

    15 August 2018 - Barrens Hut/The Split

    Flat seas, very little wind, no current, warmer water (16.0C) and over 25 m viz! Went N along Split where there were 2 large rays. Then N again once on outside wall. Found 4 donut nembrothas here. Also a couple of blue morwongs. Back S (Kelly dived with second group and found 2 PPH). Two more nembrothas on the way. There is also a reef section visible above the sand, obviously a bit of movement here recently. Back near S end of Split could see MakCat from 26 metres and at an angle! Wow!. Went to the small gully near here, lots of bastard trumpeters and red morwongs there. After Les went up I hung around under the boat for a while till Kelly, Nancy and Lynne came down and then I ascended. An excellent dive. Visibility excellent.

    25 August 2018 - The Crossroads, Jervis Bay 

    Quite windy, at least 15 kts NE and seas very sloppy with some big swells. This site is north of The Arch. A wall that starts in 26 m then a drop to 30 m and then to about 37. We hit 39.1 m but you can get much deeper, over 40. We did a drift to south from entry point. At the start I lost my torch, went back to find it but not there. Was picked up by other divers on the dive luckily. We spent 19 mins on bottom then another 5 up on the top of the wall before ascending. Lots of Port Jackson sharks, an eastern blue devilfish, lots of nice sea whips with tiger anemones, sea squirts and plenty of smaller fish. A really nice dive site. Excellent dive. Visibility excellent.

    25 August 2018 - Lighthouse Reef, Jervis Bay

    Below lighthouse at Point Perpendicular. Went in and drifted to west. Viz nowhere as good as first dive, lots of whale snot in water. Lots of yellowtail in shallows. Some overhangs. Very good sponge life as expected. A few PJs. Have had better dives here. Visibility fair.

    26 August 2018 - Stoney Creek, Jervis Bay

    Much flatter seas than yesterday, virtually no wind. Live drop onto buoy, strong current, perhaps 0.5 kt from north, so drifted south. Went to 37 m and then to 40+. Hit 42.6 m and stayed below 40 for about 15 mins. Then worked our way west to shallower and then top of wall at 33 m. Ascended after 21.5 mins. Saw a few wobbegongs, sponge and sea whips on deeper parts so good, including tiger anemones. A really nice dive apart from the blue water ascent. Visibility good. 

    26 August 2018 - Alyssas Playground, Jervis Bay 

    This site is near Steamers Beach and the sea colony. Started near the bommie SE of beach. Headed S and then E along reef edge. About 25 m deep here. Lots of boulders, some as big as a garage. Some wobbegongs, lots of fish and beautiful sponge life. Ended up near the seal colony and had one (I think) seal play with us for about 10 mins while we ended dive and did safety stop. Fantastic!. One person saw a sunfish, apparently they see them here a lot. Visibility very good.

    29 August 2018 - Shiprock

    Too windy and large seas to take boat out. Very cold, 14.1C on bottom and 13.6C above 5 m. Hands were frozen when I got out and hard to get drysuit off and put clothes on! Not much life out on sand and bommies, did not see one nudibranch whole dive. Saw quite a few small cuttlefish, at least 15. Two moray eels, one on the last bommie in usual spot. Much better along the wall on way back, two pineapplefish, one at Bubble Cave and another near the far marker chain and one parrotfish. Also lots of silver sweep, yellowtail, seapike and other species and a few frogfish. Also quite a few medium sized bream and snapper. Back at northern end, at least 200 medium sized sand whiting. Only a reasonable dive though. Visibility good.

    Click here to see details of dives including profiles.

    For more details about these dives and other dives this year, click here.
    Michael on 01 July 2018 00:00 · Print
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