Wobbegong firsts and plenty of pygmies
Wobbegong firsts and plenty of pygmies…
On the 2nd of May our guests from America arrived early morning for our last regular trip through Raja Ampat this season. On the boat they enjoyed a breakfast and after the administration and the other usual duties we left late afternoon to Misool. With a smooth crossing we arrived right on time for a check dive in Daram, though its time to check weights and get comfortable in the kit again everyone had an eye for the beautiful scenery. We made our second dive on one of my personal favorites, Magic Mountain; a great dive and for many of our guests their first wobbegong shark sighting – some spotting them for themselves. Great job guys!!! Third dive of the day was on Boo Windows; another favorite. After enjoying the “windows” we found some pygmy seahorses and a few more wobbegongs….
Unfortunately that evening one of the guest was taken ill and after contacting DAN we arranged an emergency evacuation to Sorong, accompanied by his wife and Iwan from our crew. The other guests decided no night dive because there were more important things on our minds and the evening was somewhat somber. But the next day the best news arrived the guest was ok and steady and after an initial examination he was happily resting in the hotel. (for respect of privacy we do not disclose his medical information). So with lighter hearts the rest of us all enjoyed our dives at Fiabacet. 6th of May we travelled to Wayal Batan. First dive we made in Gorgonian Passage, enjoying the scenery of the many Gorgonians in various sizes and colors. Next dives on Wedding Cake and Barracuda Rock were also great. After the third dive we took the dinghies out to the beach for some relaxing floating and swimming. Moored up in front of Farondi Beach we dived Antichovey the following morning. This submerged reef with 4 pinnacles offers an abundance of marine life but the highlight was the “octopus-show” on the plateau. This octopus stayed out all the time with just 2 tentacles reaching into its hidy-hole almost as if saying “ I am not leaving here this is my place!!!” At Wagmab Wall we found the school of Sardines and saw a squadron of devil rays coming in to hunt. Spectacular!!! Next day we made a short trip to Balbulol for 2 lovely dives on Baby Rock and Two Tree Island, followed by No Contest and a lagoon tour. Then it was time to say a fond farewell to Misool and make our journey up to Waigeo.
After a smooth ride we start our diving at Mayhem, complete with Wobbegongs, big school of bumphead parrotfish and so much more. Citrus Ridge with its beautiful coral laden reef followed whilst in the afternoon we visited and dived Arborek Island & Jetty. Everybody enjoyed the giant clams, dence cloud of fish, the beauty of the soft corals and of course the children who jumped in to give us a high five – swimming down 4m! Nightdive also turned up a blue ringed octopus. Manta Sandy was on the schedule for the next day giving us just two mantas but its really quality not quantity as these two stayed around for the entire dive, almost posing for the eager photographers and getting up close within just half a metre! The second dive was more of a macro focus finding seamoths and other critters. Then in the afternoon we were back to adrenalin pumping with strong currents running through the Dampier Strait seeing grey reef, black and white tip sharks, wobbegong and huge schools of fish.
Last day of diving on this Indo Siren trip and the motivation had started to wain as guests began to think of their trip home, coupled with some with heavy rain it was a challenge to get the divers into the dinghies for the dive at Blue Magic. But after the dive it was a complete different picture- ok it was still raining but all divers were now singing and cheering with one stating it was his best dive EVER Great stuff on the dive but highlight was the huge manta getting eye to eye contact with them. We rounded off the trip with a dive at Mioskon for more wobbegongs, pygmy seahorses and fish schools on the way back to Sorong we hoisted our 7 sails and cruised into the harbor for the final time this season. Thanks guys for the great trip and a lot of respect for all of you but especially John diving every day with his 75 years!!!!!