Indo Siren diving Komodo

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Swiss Antics in Komodo

PICT0457Whoever said the Swiss were very serious people have never met the group that joined the S/Y Indo Siren in Bima Bay on 3rd of June!  I must say they have certainly broken the record for pole dancing! Entertaining us on the first day before we had even had breakfast!!!!  This set the tone for the rest of the trip!  Constantly entertaining us with a very competitive card game going on and the winners cheering and running around the boat in triumph when they win!!!  During our checkout dive on Unusual Suspects we saw the thorny seahorse as well as a couple of rather large crabs mating!  The party started the minute they were all out of the water with some not even having time to change out of their speedos!  At midnight the party police (Stephan) came around and told everyone it was time to sleep …. Which a few listened to but most ignored!

Pigmy-SPDay two and it was some time for serious diving so we hit The Estuary with a little current but then over at Hot Rocks the guests experienced the first of many of Komodo’s current extravaganzas!  Most divers however did manage to find a little protection and enjoy this very beautiful and fishy dive site, seeing a black ribbon eel, as well as Bargibanti pygmy seahorses. We then headed over to Gili Banta for our next two dives.  Firstly Swiss Dream; which seemed very appropriate for this group; followed by a night dive on the very special Small World. Star gazers, flying grunards, Indian Walkman (devil scorpion fish), bobtail squid, marbled octopus, mimic octopus and so much more!  A little more partying as it was Adrien’s birthday and Angela’s 400th dive. The wine was flowing as we moved the boat over to N. Komodo to anchor for the night.

mantaA gentle start was required for day #3 at Coral Garden and then we headed over to Gili Lawa Laut for some more adventurous diving at Crystal Rock and Shot Gun!  No eagle ray this time on Crystal which was a real shame however some did spot a Manta Ray as well as a number of white tip sharks, large Napoleon wrasse and many schooling fish.  This trip at Shotgun we finally got a little current and everyone enjoyed the ride! The following day it was back to Crystal Rock and then on to Castle Rock to hook in and watch the show!  We were graced with a couple of grey reefs as well as many white tips, giant trevally hunting and fish everywhere!  Then it was time to move southwards and enjoy a gentle drift along Tatawa Besar reef where Leo and Stephan spent half of the dive filming a giant cuttlefish.  Our night dive was a muck dive at Pink Beach where the water temperature dropped a couple of degrees!  This was the beginning of the cold waters which we were yet to enjoy during out journey south!  Demon scorpion fish, bobtail squid, crocodile fish, cuttlefish!  Muck dives are a beautiful thing ;0)

MUSTARD komodoDragonIn the morning we went for a walk with the Komodo Dragons! Leo was making a documentary so the walk was a little longer than planned but no problem we still managed to squeeze in 3 dives – the first two at Padar; Tiga Dara and Secret Garden.  Visibility was not great and the water temperature dropped even further but a lovely couple of dives none the less! We were building up everyone for the chilliness of Nusa Kode which was our next destination!  Torpedo Alley was waiting and yes the torpedo rays and the bobbit worms were there!  But a little more shy this time not wanting to come too far out of their holes!

ZebraUrchinCrabA rather overcast start to the day and a little windy, but it did not take away from the beauty of our first two dives on Cannibal Rock and then Crinoid Wall.  The sun peaked out for us on dive 3 on Yellow Wall where we found the very special and very tiny, lady bugs!  In the afternoon it was time to feed the dragons again and for Leo to get some action shots!  We had a few close encounters but they were not really aggressive like a couple of trips before!  We followed this with a sunset dive back in Cannibal Rock; Never a disappointment! Who says diving the same dive site is boring?  Cannibal Rock for the 3rd and final time in the morning was full of surprises with a giant frog fish, eagle ray, zebra crabs, peacock mantis shrimp, painted lobster and fish fish fish!!! In the afternoon it was time for some BIG Stuff!  Manta Alley had up to 15 mantas hanging around being cleaned and the currents weren’t too crazy.  For the second dive on Manta Alley, dolphins escorted us to the dive site. A good day for all!  And only a few hard core divers were keen to dive the Phinisi Wreck at Lok Sera that evening.  I don’t blame them, 4 dives in 24C is enough to put anyone off.

Nudi-LeopardChromodorisEarly the next morning we made our way up to Current City and Batu Bolong! When we jumped in the currents weren’t looking too hairy but they certainly picked up during the dive!  However, there were still plenty of protected areas to dive and be visited by the very inquisitive Napoleon wrasse that live there, as well as a banded sea snake that kept popping up for air and of course my favourite the hairy squat lobster! Next a chilled drift dive back at Tatawa Besar before heading back over to Gili Lawa Laut for some Castle Rock action! There were still masses of fish, white tip sharks as well as an octopus and another banded sea snake! We headed to an island just outside of Labuan Bajo for our night dive at Cape Bidadari.  No ribbon eels but lots of large pink whiptail rays in the sand, sepia and pygmy cuttlefish, nudibranchs and crabs galore.  Ben celebrated his 800th dive with us but unfortunately they had already drunk all of the wine on board so we had to wait to celebrate the event at the end of the trip!  The swiss love their wine!  More than 3 months stock gone in one trip!  Impressive!

PICT0439Time flies and for the last full day of diving it was back over to Shot Gun, Crystal Rock and Castle Rock before heading back to North Komodo to Coral Garden for our night dive!  On the way over we put the sails up and cruised around for a short while.  For the final day we returned to Swiss Dream followed by K2.  Thanks boys for soaking me before you went diving!  I was really really missing the water!!!!  Oh and also for throwing me in the rinse tank!  This is definitely a trip I will remember!  You are all totally bonkers and we love it!

A BBQ, movie clips from the trip and then the last night party got well on its way with crew and guests dancing the night away until around 2am!  We are all missing your fun-loving spirit already and hope you will come and see us again soon!!!

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