Wrecks or “Artifical reefs”?
Wrecks or “Artifical reefs”?
The Truk Siren welcomed her guests late at night in Weno. After a few snacks and the cabin assignment everybody went to bed to get ready for the week to come. Since everybody arrived late, Cruise Director Leo was very nice and started the diving day at 8 am with a big breakfast, the obligatory briefings and the life jacket drill, before diving the stunning wreck of the Kensho Maru with its impressing engine room. Since this is one of the larger wrecks here we opted for two dives before moving to the largest wreck inside Truk Lagoon, the Heian Maru. Normally we don’t do night dives often here, but the Heian is a very easy dive with the wreck starting in just 12 mtr.
The first dive this morning was the Heian Maru, after our guests did yesterday a night dive here already, today was more time to explore the insights of the wreck with a great engine room. We decided today that we turn the world to its side since all the wrecks today laying on the side on the sea floor. The next wreck for today was the Yamagiri Maru, a quite large vessel with a large engine room and 14 inch shells in one of her 5 cargo holds. Since it is such a large vessel we stayed for two dives so that we could explore the wreck properly without feeling rushed. For the afternoon we moved closer to shore for some more protection, but the great thing about Truk lagoon is that there is such an amount of wrecks available so we choose the Kiyoshumi Maru. The thousands of Jelly fish who have been a bit annoying during the day magically disappeared and everybody had a great dive exploring the cargo holds but also the great coral grow in this “artificial reef” .
The following morning and Captain Daeng moved the Truk Siren around Tonoas Island to the little bit more exposed wreck of the Nippo Maru. This was so far the deepest wreck of the week with the deck laying in 34 mtr, however other the wrecks from yesterday the Nippo was not on repair anchorage which means that the cargo is more interesting, a small battle tank sits on the deck and a few gas masks are scattered around. The exposed situation also attracts a fair amount of fish live including a beautiful school of big eye trevallies. For the afternoon we choose one of the most beautiful wrecks here and a favorite of the dive crew, the Fujikawa Maru. Fully overgrown with corals and zero fighters in the cargo holds as well as anti aircraft gun at the bow, everybody came back to the Truk Siren with a big smile on their face. For the sunset/night dive Leo picked something different after all the ship wrecks and the Betty Bomber was the right choice, easy accessible in just 18 mtr it was perfect for dive number 4.
All guests were ready the next morning for another new wreck, the Rio de Janeiro Maru, again a very large vessel with 140 mtr in lengths and full cargo holds and a great engine room. We scheduled 2 dives here before Captain Daeng drove the Truk Siren around Uman Island to the Sankisan Maru wreck for the afternoon. The Sankisan is actually just half a wreck since the stern half of the ship got destroyed in an secondary explosion which left a deep crater in the sea floor. For many visitors of Truk lagoon, the San Francisco Maru is the highlight. The good visibility gave us the opportunity to dive the deepest wreck on our itinerary. Commonly known as the 1 Million dollar wreck, the San Francisco Maru lays in 65 mtr of water with the deck at 47 mtr., the most experienced divers of our group had a chance to see the cargo holds with mines, torpedoes and trucks. A very common subject for underwater photographers is the bow gun and the three battle tanks which stand on the deck next to cargo hold two. After only 12 minutes on the deck we started our ascent in order not to get too much decompression time. The other half of our group of divers choose a dive on Shark Reef instead of the wreck and we used our comfortable 29ft skiff to swiftly bring them to the reef whilst the Truk Siren stayed moored up on top the wreck of the Francisco Maru to offer the support and also to have the decompression bar as a safety hanging under the Truk Siren.
After the big breakfast to get the energy back we headed back to the Fujikawa Maru, however since the group who has been diving the Shark Reef was so excited about their previous dive, we offered again the option to repeat this dive. For the night dive we headed back towards the Kenshu Maru with her great corals. The last diving day started with another one of my favorites in Truk Lagoon, the Shinkoku Maru. This wreck is covered in amazing soft corals and we always do at least two dives on her. Before lunch we said good bye to our non American guests Selina from Switzerland and Martin from Germany. The rest of us had the final dive at the I-169, a Japanese submarine. The rest of the afternoon was spent resting and getting massages, reading and chilling out, watching videos of the week and planning further adventures.
From all of us here at the Truk Siren thank you again for joining us for a great week of wreck diving.