24 July 2020 - Barrens Hut/The Split
First dive for 5 weeks as away in western NSW. A few problems before the dive, including loosing a wheel from trailer on the way to the ramp (did not know I lost till at RMYC!). Never found it. Anyway, flat seas and blue water, no wind. Was supposed to be rainy till yesterday but the forecast pushed it back to noon (came later at 1600). Les watched boat, we went up Split to outside, a few PJs along the way. Then outside to N and found three donut nembrothas which Natalia wanted to see. Then back to anchor and Cave, bastard trumpeters here and also then at their normal spot. Here I saw a seal and then a minunte later, it came back and the others saw as well. Back up after this. A really good dive, making up for all the problems earlier (and later a flat tyre on trailer!). Visibility very good.
1 August 2020 - Bypass Reef
Club boat dive, three boats, 12 divers. Botany Bay very dirty and a bit dirty and cold on top (15.7C) but much better and warmer (17.4C) on bottom. Little current but surgy as large swell on longsih period. Anchored right on corner and went N and then back and S. Lots of silver sweep at N end, quite a few pairs of black reef leatherjackets, plenty of red morwong in a cave and a few PJs. Some on one boat saw a blue devilfish but they were a bit deeper. Whales heard and one surfaced between the boats! Much better than expected considering the rain at the start of the week. Visibility fair.
2 August 2020 - Middle Ground NorthÂ
Swell dropped a lot since yesterday, no surge at all at 32 m. Water again drity and cold on top but on bottom 17.4C and 7-8 m viz. Fishers on main reef so came over here. Anchored on W side and went to E along a crack. Then NW. Lots of yellowtail and silver sweep up over the reef. Plenty of leatherjackets of different species. A few small octopus. Back across to W side and back to anchor and then S a little. Lots of wandering anemones on sea whips here, some tiger anemones. Another surprisingly good dive. Visibility fair.
5 August 2020 - Middle GroundÂ
Club boat dive. Wind was a bit stronger than forecast, NW at 15 kts, but not too rough. Wind dropped to under 10 kts while we were diving..Viz on bottom 5-7 m but much better above 18 m. Anchored first go on rock off NW corner of reef. Viz about -Went E and on NE corner saw a large grey nurse shark, the first I have seen here. Brilliant! Then S to SE corner and back again, hoping we could see the shark again. No luck. Thousands of yellowtail and seapike over the reef and plenty of silver sweep too. Also lots of black reef leatherjackets. A great dive. Visibility fair.
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