8 DAYS OF PERFECT REEF WEATHER
We’ve had 8 perfect days on the outer reef with amazing weather…. quite warm , very little wave action and only 5 – 15knots of E – NW winds. Susan and I had a beautiful time together exploring some new reef areas in isolation.
Faraday Reef ( 4 days) about 58nm NNE of Townsville this reef gives very good protection from SE thru to NE winds. We anchored in about 15 meters almost up again the main reef body with plenty of swing room. In between the bommies that make it to the surface the bottom is littered with bommies & trenchers that come up to about 4-6me from the surface, so not enough to be a boating danger but great for diving and snorkeling, etc. The coral and fish life is reasonable. Susan loved the small turtles, patrolling white tip reef sharks and the Nemos on top of the bommies. I saw a unusual school of about 200 black surgeon fish maybe getting ready for up coming spawning. First day diving I drowned my expensive underwater camera by some how not closing the casing properly…BUMMER… but Susan had her point and shoot little camera so we still had under water photo pic fun. Visibility was 18 – 25 me.
Myrmidon Reef (2 days) is about another 12 miles further north than Faraday its a tight but well protected anchorage (S, E & N) in the cut away in only 8 meters of water. Have been here several times before but I was keen to drift dive the Northern wall section which drops down to sand in 20 meters before it starts a prolonged deep fall down toward the continental shelf ….so I was hoping for something exciting but alas all a bit below average with 15 – 18 me visibility and only modest reef fish, below average coral & a few big GT’s , the most exciting thing was when a large turtle and I nearly bumped into each other when we both rounded a corner together. The second day we snorkeled and then I spent 2 hours on the Hookah searching for a giant groper and Mario Wrass I had seen here before…but no success.
Coil Reef (2 days) having recently had such a good time there and with the winds moving more NNW we were keen to snorkel and dive here again and we were not disappointed. A highlight was a school of 50 big Bump headed Parrot fish which maybe were getting into breeding mode amongst a magnificent field of cathedral organ coral. Lovely coral everywhere and this time I also got to hookah dive the NW end . Where it dropped of deeper at the end of the reef I again was visited by some beautiful Grey Sharks..fast sleek and flighty they are so different to the smaller white tips which are so docile during the day. Also GT’S & Mackerel were zooming around where it falls of deeper. There are also plentiful Unicorn fish around as well with their ever present bump headed funny smiles. Definitely now one of our favorite places but needs to be fairly calm and lots of care needed with quite strong currents in all directions!! Visibility 20 – 25 me.