Log Date: Sunday, Feb 07, 2016
Entry By: Palau Aggressor Crew
Palau Aggressor II Boat Report
January Feb 7-14, 2016
2nd Capt/Photo Pro: Casey
Video pro/Divemaster: Ernan
Divemaster/Skiff Driver: Joe
This week we have a group tour of 15 passengers, 13 divers and 2 snorkelers. After the usual setting up, settling into individual cabins and the safety briefing, everyone sat down to our welcome aboard meal prepared by Chef Ronnie.
Come Monday morning Feb. 8 we began our diving on the Jake’s Sea Plane where it is shallow and calm. After this checkout dive we went to the Helmet Wreck and enjoyed the many WWII artifacts this wreck provides. They include a gun, gas mask, zero engines, helmets and a large number of depth charges. For dive 3 and 4 we went to German Channel and saw a number of grey and white tip reef sharks, manta rays, octopus, jacks, a large napoleon wrasse and a great variety of tropical fish throughout both dives.
Tuesday morning we cruise to Peleliu and anchored at Camp Beck. The first dive took in the pristine hard coral garden at Barracks Point where the group saw turtles, giant clams, schooling snappers and sweetlips and a variety of butterfly fish and angel fish. Following the first dive the whole group opted to do a land tour of Peleliu which featured the history of the WWII battle for this small island. After lunch we dove Orange Beach where the current was moderate and the fish were active. Schools of barracuda, turtles, crocodile fish, along with some WWII artifacts were the highlight of this dive.
Wednesday had us back in the German Channel region and we started with diving fabled Blue Corner and ended the day with a dusk dive at German Coral Garden. In between we dove Blue Holes and Canyons. Highlights from these dives included many sharks including a thresher shark. A number of turtles, large schools of Jacks and barracuda, pygmy sea horse, a flame scallop with an electric pulse, schools of pyramid butterfly fish, orange fin surgeon fish, and far too many turtles to count.
Thursday we dove Blue Corner, New Drop Off, Turtle Cove and finished with a dive on the north side of German Coral Garden. Visibility for all of these dives was from 60-100 feet with water temperatures in the 78-80 degree range. Highlights included many grey and white tip reef sharks, schools of jacks and barracuda, several turtles and one manta ray. We also saw a great variety of colorful angel and butterfly fish, schooling bluestrip and yellow tail snappers, bumphead parrot fish, napoleon wrasses and a lot of soft corals and pristine hard corals.
Friday was our last day of diving the outer reefs and put us at Ulong Island where we started at Ulong Channel. Here we had an incoming current which brought in a number of sharks and schooling fish. after spending about 25 minutes hooked in at the mouth the group drifted down the channel and enjoyed the ride past a great variety of marine life which included a large school of glass eye fish, more sharks, several titans triggerfish, butterfly fish, and two giant clams. Dive 2 was at Siaes Corner where the current was light. This dive featured both hard and soft corals along with a lot of fusiliers, purple anthias, angelfish, turtles, clown trigger fish and a school of barracuda and jacks. Dive 3 was at Sandy Paradise where we saw two leaf fish, a mantis shrimp a crocodile fish and several bumphead parrot fish. On dive four at Ulong Coral Garden we had excellent conditions and saw a bit of everything including an extended octopus show which included flashing colors and textures```` by the octopus. Other highlights included a giant clam, several anemones with resident fish, schools of glass fish, barracuda and jacks and several sharks all amongst the pristine hard corals this site offers.
On Saturday we started with a snorkel at Jellyfish lake and ended with a dive at Chandelier Cave. Both of these are very unique opportunities that the group really enjoyed.
We wrapped up the week at the traditional cocktail party and would like to thank the entire group for a great week of diving and cruising the beautiful islands of Palau.