OUTER REEF STOP OVER
We stopped over on the outer reef pulling in a couple of Tuna for Sashimi on the way out. I got the guys familiar with Hookah diving . On their first dive they encounted a school of Tuna chasing bait fish, a Manta Ray & were wrapped in the beautiful Coral ………they are now totally sold on the Great Barrier Reef.
CORAL SEA 3 – STH FLINDERS REEF
An early start from the outer reef saw us skipping thru a docile 1.5me swell at our high cruising speed of 13 knots & we arrived at South Flinders around mid day. The depth changed from 800 meters to 70meters in the blink of an eye and the bottom was visible. We couldn’t wait to fish and dive..by 1 pm Colby had pulled in a huge Wahoo & by 1.30pm we were in the water diving along the drop off. We found anchoring in the South Flinders Lagoon behind Boomerang reef easy and comfortable.
CORAL SEA 3 – DIVING TEH FLINDERS REEF
10 years ago a huge pool of hot ocean water settled around Flinders reefs …followed by a bleaching that killed nearly all the coral. It is slowly recovering but in my estimates it will be generations before it could hope to return to its former glory……most disappointing..no wonder nobody comes here anymore. Although on the plus plus side the visibility is fantastic mostly 30 – 40me , the fans still spectacular & there is always a few interesting things to see.
After 8 dives we have only found a Coral ghost town. A lot less fish than expected and no big pelagic action as hoped for. We have found lots of big pelagic fish in several areas when fishing , but they are in very exposed areas not suitable to our floating hookah with its 23 me depth limit. Maybe deep drifting thru these spots with scuba tanks may have been a different story for seeing the big pelagic and big shark action. Oh well thems the breaks. Maybe if there is a next time we’ll bring different equipment.
I think North Flinders & the north east end of the ringing reefs were probably the best diving areas we visited
CORAL SEA 4 – SHARK FEED
Close up pics of big sharks was on my bucket list so with a few Grey Reef sharks circling the boat now seemed a good time to give it crack. They weren’t big but they were about my size and a bit bigger than the usual black and white tip reef sharks so we dropped down a Tuna carcass about 1/2 way down a weighted rope and I sat on the bottom in 13 meters of water about 10 meters away. At first they were shy but soon gained confidence gliding close by to check me out and I got some excellent pics. The boat swung around moving the carcass about 15 meters away from me and several seized the opportunity for a free meal. Then the biggest one headed straight for me giving me a great head on shot..then he kept coming & coming…a shake of the camera did nothing to deter him but when the second thrust clipped him on the nose with the strobe it shocked him into a hasty & total retreat. I’m sure to the shark the flashing camera and reflecting lens and strobe appeared like another fish meal on the end of my Hookah line!! Anyhow I’m glad he spared my expensive camera and my hand that was attached to it.!!!