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Aggressor Adventure Travel
Rock Islands Aggressor :


Log Date: Sunday, Feb 08, 2015
Entry By: Tropic Dancer Crew


On Sunday we started our pickups, 4 guests were already on the island, and the majority came in on the 9:10 pm flight. In total we welcomed on board 16 guests, A group of 14 people from A1 Scuba in Colorado, and 2 people from Austria. We started with a quick introduction to their cabins. Then on the dive deck, everyone set up their dive gear. Most of the guests then wanted to head to bed after their long flights, so we opted to start the briefings tomorrow morning.


     Early Monday morning we started up the big boat early headed into Malakal Harbor. After breakfast we covered the Vessel orientation and safety briefing and then the general dive briefing. We then handed out the Nautilus Lifelines and headed down to the dive deck. We checked certification cards and loaded everyone gear to the skiff. Our first dive was at the Helmet Wreck or also known as the Depth Charge Wreck. This wreck is so named due to the couple stacks of WWII helmets found in the first cargo hold as well as the depth charges in the first two cargo holds. We entered the water and everyone did a weight check and soon started their descent. We stopped in the first cargo hold, saw the helmets, and continued down towards the bow of the wreck. In the middle cargo hold we saw more depth charges we swam through the cargo hold to the forward cargo hold and saw the airplane motors. At the bow of the wreck we found the banded messmate pipe fish around the anchor wench. On the way back to the stern we found a couple of signal gobies on the silted deck. We then spent the rest of the dive looking over the artifacts that have been collected and placed out on the stern. After the dive, during lunch, the big boat moved out of pinchers and straight to Ulong. After lunch we covered the last power point presentation on how to use the reef hooks and our nest dive was at Siaes Corner. We entered the water and drifted towards the hook in area. Along the way we had a huge school of orange spine surgeon fish pass by the group with about 40 sharks following them. We made it to the hook in area and hooked in. We stayed there for a while but there were no sharks, we guess that they were all following the orange spines. We unhooked and spent the rest of the dive exploring the plateau. For dive four we headed out to Ulong Coral Garden. We started the dive from the furthest mooring from the mouth and drifted along the wall. We had some sharks in the blue and a couple beautiful anemones that were balled up feeding. We saw the school of horse eyed jacks and the one giant clam. The current was now incoming and we ended the dive drifting into the channel. Dinner was soon ready after we arrived at the big boat, after we watched a fish ID presentation on the most common fish we see here in Palau.

     Tuesday morning we had an incoming current and went to Ulong Channel. We entered the water and drifted along towards the hook in area. We hooked in at the mouth and watched as several gray reef sharks passed by in front of us. We then unhooked and drifted into the channel. Everyone enjoyed drifting down the sandy bottom channel past the lettuce coral and we ended the dive at the giant clams. For dive two we headed out to Sandy Paradise. We found the three leaf scorpion fish and saw a large school of barracuda and the big eyed crescent tail fish. Towards the end of the dive we found two octopuses around one coral head. After the dive, during lunch, we moved the big boat to the German Channel area. Dive three was at Turtle Cove. All the guests enjoyed the relaxing drift along the wall and spotted several nudis and even some sharks in the blue. We also saw the square spot anthias and the corner was full of marine life, school of snapper, ruder fish, and horse eyed jacks. For the forth dive we headed to Big Drop Off. We entered the water from the mooring lines and drifted along with the wall on our left. A couple of sharks passed us by in the blue and we found some macro life on the wall. In the large bush of black coral we saw a long nose hawk fish as well. After dinner we went back to Big Drop Off for the night dive. At night all the cup coral comes out to feed and the night critters can be seen walking around on the wall; crabs, shrimp, and some basket stars out filter feeding.


     Wednesday morning we started the day with German Channel. The current was incoming, we entered the water on the Koror side of the channel. We stopped at the red anemone for photos then sat down around the cleaning station. No mantas came in to be cleaned, so we headed across the mouth of the channel, and found a Feathertail ray lying in the sand. We then found the ornate ghost pipe fish and had a manta do a couple of pass bys over top of us but it didnt stay. For dive two we went to Blue Holes. We entered the water for on top the plateau, and descended down into the chamber. We took photos, saw the disco clam, then exited and made it down to Blue Corner. We were low on bottom time so we just decided to drift across the plateau with the napoleons following us for the rest of the dive. After lunch we headed to Ngedebus Corner. All the guests enjoyed the drift around the corner, we saw a lot of macro life, and at the corner we saw sharks, and schools of fish. For the fourth dive we headed to New Drop Off. It was an incoming current and it was moving. We drifted along the beautiful wall and hooked in on the corner. We had several sharks in front of us the whole time we were hooked in. We spent most of the dive at the hook in due to the strong current, then unhooked and shot across the plateau. To end the dive we had two large spotted eagle rays swim underneath us. After dinner the night dive was at Turtle Cove. During the dive we saw a couple of turtles, nudis, and some basket stars out filter feeding in the mild current.


     Thursday morning we woke up early and moved the big boat down to Peleliu. After we tied up the big boat in South Dock, our first dive was at Peleliu Corner. We checked the current and it was an incoming current. So we did the Express. We entered the water and went wall on the right to the hook in area. We had a nice encounter with an octopus crawling along the reef. We hooked in and had a couple of sharks in front of us. We then unhooked and rode the current all the way to the corner. We then started ascending to come and do our safety stop and we saw the large school of G.T. at the corner. After the dive 15 guests went on the Peleliu WWII land tour to explore the sights of one of the bloodiest battles of WWII. The one guest that didnt go on the tour decided to take a nap and not do the second dive. After lunch dive three was at West Wall. We entered the water and found a rare nudi and got some great photos. Then we found a beautiful scorpion fish and in the swim through we found 2 robust ghost pipe fish trying to blend in with the sea grass. We ended the dive at the beautiful red anemone on top the plateau. After the dive the big boat left south dock and slowly headed back to German Channel. We dropped the skiff for one last dive in Peleliu at Barracks Point. We saw some big schools of fish, giant clams and around 12 turtles. The night dive was at German Coral Garden. We found several shrimp and some cone shells out wondering the reef.


     On Friday morning we woke up and started the day with Blue Corner. The current was nice and incoming. We hooked in at the 45 foot hook in area and enjoyed the show. There were sharks in front of us, the napoleons swam in and out of the group, and a large dog tooth tuna that was trying to feed on the horse eyed jacks. We then unhooked and went down to the 60 foot hook in area. We had more sharks in front of us while we were hook in there. We then unhooked and explored the plateau seeing some turtles and blue lined snapper. Most of the guests said that this was the best dive of the charter. For dive two we headed back to German Channel. Our guests wanted to see mantas, this time we started from the Peleliu side of the mouth and on our way to the cleaning station we found a different ornate ghost pipe fish. We sat down in the sand around the cleaning station and waited. No mantas. We then headed across the mouth of the channel and found two more ornate ghost pipe fish and a short nose pipe fish. We sat down around the Koror side cleaning station and waited, but still no mantas. We ended the dive by drifting into the channel. After lunch for dive three, we went back to Blue Corner. We hooked in on the outgoing side and had several sharks in the blue. The current then died off, so we unhooked and made our way to the tip of the corner. We spent the rest of the dive with the school of blue lined snapper and the napoleons. For dive four we headed out to Ferns Wall. We drifted along the wall and saw several turtles, and in some cracks in the reef we spotted a couple of lobster. When we returned to the big boat we started moving into the rock islands to get closer to Jelly fish lake for tomorrow. Soon after we sat down to chef Manis final supper of turkey, honey baked ham, mashed potatoes, and more. Then we watched a short documentary on Jelly Fish Lake and most of the guests were soon off to bed.


     We woke up Saturday morning with the big boat in the rock islands. We were totally surrounded by the islands and could hear all the birds chirping as they too were waking up. Our first excursion was Jelly Fish Lake. We tied the skiff up on the outside and started our hike over the hill to the lake. We entered the water and after a short swim into the middle of the lake we were surrounded by millions of jelly fish. Everyone enjoyed this time in the lake, with an estimated 13 million jelly fish. After the lake we took the guests on a rock island tour, we first stopped at the famous limestone archway, then some WWII sites as we made our way back to the big boat. We had a quick turnaround and headed out to Chandelier Cave. We surfaced in all four air chambers to take photos of the stalactites and in the fourth chamber we had something very special happen, Helmut, one of guests proposed to his girlfriend Susanne and she said YES!!! Everyone was very happy and once we got the word we got the champagne ready as they arrived back to the big boat from the dive and we had a toast to them. After an afternoon of cleaning, drying and packing scuba gear, we gathered in the salon at 6pm for the cocktail party and watch a photo slideshow of the week and soon after all the guests headed off into town for dinner. After dinner the guests came back to the boat, and we said our goodbyes to the 14 Americans as they headed to the airport to go for another week of diving in Truk.


     Sunday morning the 2 guests woke up to continental breakfast and at 8am we said our goodbyes as they headed off to their hotel. We would like to thank all of our guests for joining us this week aboard the Tropic Dancer, hope to see you all again soon…


          -Tropic Dancer Crew