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
My Dive Boat - Mak Cat
My 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
My Yachting Adventures
Below is a list of links to the main pages about my yacht, Catlypso and My Yachting Adventures:
  • Purchase of Catlypso
  • Details about Catlypso
  • Cleaning/Repairing Catlypso
  • My Yachting Adventures.
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    Michael's 4WD Trips
    Click here for a list of my Four Wheel Drive and Camping Trips.
    Current Kareela Weather
    A summary of the current weather conditions at my 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.
    Sydney Dive Site Hints
    "Pregnant male sea dragons can be seen from July to December"
    Old Mans Hat - North Head
    Michael McFadyen's Scuba Diving - North Head
    North Head
    North Head - you can dive anywhere along here
    Old Mans Hat is above the word Europe
    The northern headland of the entrance to Sydney Harbour is called, not surprisingly, North Head. It runs in an east-west direction for over a kilometre and a half. All along this section there is excellent diving, especially when the north-easterly sea breeze is blowing strongly.

    A favourite way to dive here is to do it as a drift dive. If the tide is running in, drop in out towards the ocean and if on an outgoing tide, start towards the Harbour. Alternatively, you can anchor in any location a (simply run in towards the land and drop anchor when the bottom comes up). A good spot is 33° 49' 18.9"S 151° 17' 35.3"E (using AUS66 as datum - see My GPS Page for more details). Maximum depth is in the order of 24 metres, although it may get deeper towards the ocean.

    Once on the bottom, follow the sand edge in your chosen direction and return shallower (if anchored) or follow the sand edge if drifting till your bottom time gets low and then come shallower. The reef here consists of a lot of small boulders on the sand and some low walls behind this. There are some much larger boulders off the reef as well. The most spectacular feature of this location is the sponge gardens, absolutely brilliant. Sponges of all colours, sea squirts, ascidians, gorgonias and other fixed marine life is just the start of it.

    If you head east from this spot, there are lot of boulders to explore. I normally spend about 10 minutes going in this direction at a depth of about 22 metres before coming up the reef to about 18 metres. From here, I turn back to the west and go back towards the anchor.

    There are a number of very spectacular walls along here as well as some overhangs, small canyons and a couple of very good swim-throughs. This is a great section of reef. The overhangs are home to lots of ladder-finned pomfrets, seapike and even Port Jackson sharks in late Winter.

    Once you get back near the anchor, head further west. There are more nice walls and boulders, with many overhangs. I normally go about 8 minutes past here (time will be about 28 minutes). Then, turn around again and go back to the east to the anchor. You should be back there about 38 minutes. Doing the dive as I have described, you will only have about 40 minutes bottom time, so it will be time to ascend.

    The fishlife is also very good, with bream, sweep, luderick, yellowtail the most prolific. There are also a lot of black reef and six-spined leatherjackets. On the sand there are also sea dragons and if you are lucky, you may see a red indianfish.

    If you need an anchor, there are numerous abandoned ones all over this dive site. In June 2010 we found two really good ones with lots of chain.

    This is a great dive location (or in reality, a number of locations). Dive it again and again.

    Copyright © Michael McFadyen 1990 to 2020
    Non-commercial use of an article or photograph is permitted with appropriate URL reference to this site.
    Dive shops, dive operators, publications and government departments cannot use anything without first seeking and receiving approval from Michael McFadyen.
    This web site has been wholly thought up, designed, constructed and funded by Michael McFadyen
    without any help from the Australian Dive Industry since 1996!