My Recent Dives - July & August 2012
Posted by Michael on 01 July 2012 06:00
1 July 2012 - Bare Island Deep Wall
Club shore dive. Was supposed to be Shark Point but very large NE swell so moved to here. We were going to do Bare Island East but spoke to a diver who did the wall yesterday and said viz was good. Went SW as normal. Kelly found a small PPH here. Back near where the anchor used to be I found a large red PPH. A frogfish, some PJs, a few large squid, two Verco tamja nudis and more. Did not find the yellow sea horse. Large outboard motor now near Shark Fin (moved by some irresponsible divers). Lots of sand missing on the normal dive area, many rocks and timber from bridge now visible. Visibility good.
3 July 2012 - Shiprock
Quite cold in and out of the water. Water was pretty clean considering the dredge working opposite (was not there this morning). A few octopus, lots of silver sweep and yellowtail. One Opera house nudi, a frogfish. Could not refind the black anglerfish they saw on the weekend. The 3 pineapplefish are still at N end. Good dive. Visibility fair.
4 July 2012 - Shiprock
Just as cold as yesterday, should have got my drysuit ready for this dive. Similar dive to yesterday, saw more Opera house nudis and the pineapplefish. Used a bit more air today as we were about 10 mins late getting in and had to swim into current for a bit before turning around. Visibility fair.
7 July 2012 - Shiprock
We were supposed to dive SS Tuggerah but winds 20+ kts. Much warmer and better viz than the two dives during the week. Saw a dwarf firefish, a shovel-nosed ray and a small wobbegong. Went in well before the normal time as it was a small tide and the previous dives turned early. On the way back found a black anglerfish about 15-20 m S of Bubble Cave. Lots of fish all over the place. Very good dive. Visibility good.
8 July 2012 - Barrens Hut/The Split
Much nicer day than yesterday. Had some new members with us and Daryl took Yes Dear out for its first trip so we went to a favourite dive. What a dive! Could see the bottom as soon as we entered the water. Went along The Split to N. Headed back along outside reef. Could easily see boat from 25 m. A large bullray swam past here and further along Nancy showed me a tiny donut nembrotha (normally only found at Nelson Bay). Went to The Tunnel and Cave and then back to anchor where the ray was in Split. A brilliant dive. Visibility excellent.
11 July 2012 - Middle Ground
Club boat dive. Very large swells, but smooth. Quite comfortable on the boat. Simon's valve leaked and we could not repair. Turned out to be the DIN insert o-ring but we did not find out till after, so he did not dive. Huge amount of fish, mostly seapike and silver sweep. One blue devilfish, other saw a large wobbegong, but we did not see. Another brilliant dive. Visibility very good.
12 July 2012 - Bare Island Deep Wall
Club night dive. Went in off W point. Lots of jellyfish and then a firefish. As soon as we dropped over the wall I found a red indianfish. Then more firefish. Ken had a seal buzz him here. Further on, more firefish. The seal then buzzed Ken and me. Another RIF was seen, more firefish (6 in total), PJs, large flathead, squid and finally, two pygmy pipehorses. Was supposed to be outgoing tide but was coming in. A brilliant dive. Visibility very good.
14 July 2012 - Marley Point
Club boat dive, 4 boats, 20 people. What a dive. Blue water, seal on the surface, whales on the way down and back, plus a brilliant dive. Most yellowtail I have ever seen on a dive. A lot of ladder-finned pomfrets and some seapike. The 4th great dive in a row. Visibility very good.
15 July 2012 - Bare Island Deep Wall
Went in off W point and went to Deep Wall. Refound the RIF from Thursday night and Kelly found 5 PPH in the first few minutes. Also some Verco tambjas. Travelled quite slow for the deeper section. Natasha found 2 more RIF on 15 m Reef and Gary saw some firefish. A few PJs all over the place. Dirtier and colder above about 10 m. Could not find the PPH at 10 m. Was almost low tide but current coming in. Visibility very good.
15 July 2012 - Bare Island Isolated Reefs
Did a second dive the first was so good. Went off W point and headed W to sand. Then along 15 m Reef to end and across to main reef and then outside IR1. Along here Kelly found a PPH. At the end of IR2 there was a blue devilfish. Further along Mikhail found a RIF and back on main reef Kelly found about 20 sulphur Noumea nudibranchs on a yellow sponge. Incoming tide but not as good viz as first dive. Visibility good.
18 July 2012 - Underwater Wilderness
Club boat dive. Tried to dive The Balcony but swell a bit too big. First time we have dived here since 2009. Viz and water temperature down a little from Saturday but still nice. Lots of yellowtail and one-spot pullers in the gullies. Went thru all the swim-throughs, inlcuding The Marble. Another very good dive. Visibility good.
21 July 2012 - North Bowen Island Drift, Jervis Bay
Club trip. Very large seas but not too bad here. Went to North Bowen Island. Did a drift in. A bit surgy. Huge numbers of PJs, lots of one-spot pullers. A few sea dragons, a yellow knuckle sea spider. Reasonable dive considering conditions. Visibility good.
21 July 2012 - North Bowen Island, Jervis Bay
Went to a similar spot where we started least dive. Went to W and then back shallower. Saw more PJs, then a huge bullray. Also more one-spot pullers. Nice dive. Visibility good.
22 July 2012 - North Bowen Island Drift, Jervis Bay
Did a drift dive from similar place to yesterday morning. Kelly and I went more N than W and ended up having to swim back S for a long time to get back into the shallows. Saw a few sea dragons, lots of PJs. Not a lot more. Very surgy, even at 25 m. Nice reef out here. Visibility fair, but good shallower.
22 July 2012 - North Bowen Island, Jervis Bay
Anchored a little further out than second dive yesterday. Went to sand and then W. Saw 4 sea dragons, Kelly found more sea spiders, heaps more PJs, some saw a huge bullray, probably the one we saw yesterday. Very surgy again. Visibility good.
26 July 2012 - Oak Park
Club night dive. Water was a warm 17.2C. Went from behind pool and then SW to sand. Saw a PJ with an egg in its mouth. Not all that much along the sand edge. Viz was variable. Out near urinal was a shovel-nosed ray. Back along the wall there were three very large cuttlefish, a large squid and a few small octopus. Not the greatest dive, but okay. Visibility fair.
27 July 2012 - Bare Island Deep Wall
Weekly Friday dive. Went of W point and SW. Could not find the RIF that has been here nor any PPH. Viz was really good here and current already incoming even though only 30 minutes after low tide. Went to RIF Reef but none there. Then to 15 Metre Reef, one RIF there and a dwarf firefish. Lots of purple dragons, some sulphur noumeas, one Verco tambja. Lots of other fish. Very nice dive. Visibility good.
27 July 2012 - Bare Island Deep Wall Drift
Decided to do a second dive, the first was so good. This time went from SE corner of island around to S and W to the Deep Wall. Water quite warm out there, 17C. Drifted in, hardly had to swim at all. Gary found the RIF at the normal spot, was under a rock. Back via SH Corner, similar to last dive. Another very good dive. Visibility good (very good shallow).
28 July 2012 - The Split
Club boat dive. Strong W wind and seas up from yesterday. Still warm at 16.4 on bottom and 17.2 near surface. Took 3 goes to anchor, ended up SW of S end of Split. Went to Split and N. Took our time. Lots of PJs. Back E of anchor found a donut nembrotha where Nancy found a couple 3 weeks ago. Got some photos. A great find of a species not really known to be in Sydney. Wind changed to SW when I went to move anchor. Back up, Ray could not get any kick out of his motor and I started to tow him but Maritime turned up and took over. Visibility very good.
1 August 2012 - Shiprock
Club night dive with 8 members. Dived a day early as seas huge and tide only suitable tonight. Very high tide and moved quite quickly. Water still around 17C for most of the dive. At 25 minutes the tide changed very quickly and we headed back. Things seen include many firefish, small cuttlefish, lots of decorator crabs, one sea spider with white joints, three pineapplefish (one S of Bubble Cave), moray and spotted eels and more. Not a brilliant dive, but okay. Visibility poor.
3 August 2012 - Shiprock
Before work dive. Did a similar dive to Wednesday night, but water only 16C. However, much better viz, 10 m at least. A lower high tide so did not move as quick. Saw 4 pineapplefish, now 2 25 m S of Bubble Cave. Also refound the black anglerfish I found 7 July. It was 5 m NW of the plaque on sand next to some rock like growth. A few morays and small cuttlefish, lots of normal leatherjackets etc. A much better dive than the last one. Visibility fair.
9 August 2012 - Shiprock
Club night dive. Very, very cold water, 13.9C for part of it, mostly 14.0-14.2C. I was okay but Ken must have been freezing in his wetsuit considering he had no hood or gloves. Did normal dive, refound black anglerfish, further S than last week. Also a few morays, mosaic eels, cuttlefish, tiny dwarf firefish, 3 pineapplefish and lots of decorator crabs. Visibility fair.
11 August 2012 - Shiprock
Had to cancel all boat dives this weekend due to 100+kph winds and huge seas. Water even colder than last dive, 13.1C, but mostly 13.3C. Did similar dive to Thursday night, refound the anglerfish about 10 m to SW of previous spot. Saw 3 + 1 pineapplefish, moray eel, lots of yellowtail. Viisibility fair.
12 August 2012 - Shiprock
Similar dive to yesterday, but almost a degree warmer (13.7C). Refound anglerfish and took timelapse photography of it. Also refound 3 pineapplefish S of Bubble Cave and 2 at N end. Many small cuttlefish, a few large moray eels. Another reasonably good dive despite temperature. Visibility fair.
22 August 2012 - Pizza Reef
Club boat dive. First time we have been out in over 3 weeks, awful weather and then no-one interested. Flat seas and no wind! Lots of seapike, yellowtail and bastard trumpters. Also some saw a blue devilfish and I found a juvenile sea dragon. A bit cold, (15.3), but a nice dive. Visibility good.
25 August 2012 - Yellow Rock
Club boat dive. Flat seas and no wind, but a little current from N. Went N at 22 m and then W till hit the main wall near rock platform. Huge amouont of fishlife here, silver sweep, yellowtail, seapike, blackfish, ludderick and more. Went S, lots of overhangs and caves and swim-throughs. Then back to anchor. Very good dive. Visibility very good.
25 August 2012 - Magic Point
Second dive using rest of air. Four boats there when we arrive, including two large ones. A lot of sand stirred up near cave. Sharks all over the place as one diver was inside the cave. Went to the overhang, 6 grey nurse sharks here. Then back to main cave. Another 6 here, happier that all the other divers have gone. Visibility good.
26 August 2012 - SS Tuggerah
Finally got to dive the Tuggerah after at least 8 aborted attempts this year. A bit sloppy on the way out but little wind and no current. Anchored in front of boiler. Went to stern and then to near bow and back to boiler. Lots of fish as usual. Did 17 mins on bottom. Used new OSTC 2N computer for the first time on a deep dive. Brilliant. When doing deco a charter boat circled us. Even after we surfaced and told them where the wreck was (100 m away by now), they could not find it. Had to take them and show them exactly where it was. What a poor dive experience for the divers! Excellent dive. Visibility very good.
29 August 2012 - The Balcony
Club boat dive. Flat seas and little wind. Anchored at 16 m and went to sand at 22 m and then N. Found 2 pygmy pipehorses on a rock. Then N again and W to large overhang. Plenty of silver sweep, ladder-finned pomfrets and more here. Also saw a few largish moray eels on the way. Then back to anchor. Les went up. Then W to the other overhang. Back to anchor and then PPH again. Showed them to Phil and Phil. Very good dive. Visibility good.
30 August 2012 - Bare Island Deep Wall
Club night dive. Very strong W winds and high tide so was a bit sloppy on W point. However, got in easy enough. Went SW to wall as normal. Headed back via IRF Reef. Viz quite good out here. Saw a dearf firefish on 15 Metre Reef and another tiny one closer to shore. Quite a few small morays, including the smallest one I have ever seen (10 mm head). A few large octopus, some small flatheads. No sea dragons, PPH or RIF. Also a few interesting nudibranchs. Visibility fair overall.Click here to see details of dives including profiles.
For more details about these dives and other dives this year, click here