Agent Login Press
Aggressor Adventure Travel
Rock Islands Aggressor :

 

Log Date: Sunday, Nov 20, 2016
Entry By: Rock Islands Aggressor Crew









 



Sunday afternoon we started our pick-ups and welcomed on board 15 guests from three different places around the world. 11 guests from Poland, 1 from Germany and our last three from the US. After a quick introduction to their cabins they set up their dive gear, got checked in, and headed upstairs for the vessel orientation and safety briefing. Dinner was soon ready following the briefing and we sat down to a great dinner prepared by our chef Andy. Later from the late flight we welcomed on our last 2 guests from Germany. We showed them their cabins and covered the safety equipment and soon everyone was off to bed.

 

We woke up early Monday morning and after breakfast we covered the general dive briefing, checked our nitrox and load onto the skiff and went for our first dive at the Helmet Wreck aka Depth Charge Wreck. This unidentified Japanese WWII sub chaser sank in the harbor in March 1944. We did our back rolls into the water, checked our weight, and descended down to the wreck. We entered the first cargo hold; saw the three stacks of helmets and the depth charges. In the middle cargo hold we saw more depth charges the large anti-aircraft search light and swam through the old partition to the forward cargo hold with the airplane engines and generator. On the bow of the wreck we saw the Nippon Brewing Company bottles and turned around and headed towards the stern. We spent the rest of the dive looking at the artifacts that have been collected and placed around the stern gun. After the dive the big boat moved out of Malakal Harbor and into the Western Lagoon. Our second dive was at The Iro. We descended down the mooring ling to the bow of the wreck saw the bow gun and swam along the deck of the wreck to the stern and circled up the last king post to see the colony of tomato anemone fish. We then swam across the wreck in the shallows. After lunch, we covered our last briefing on how to use reef hooks and our third dive was at Siaes Corner. We started from the above the coral garden and drifted down the coral garden to the hook in area, hooked in and watched the show. We saw sharks, barracuda, we the unhooked and explored the top of the plateau finding a turtle, and lots of tropical fish. Our last dive of the day was at Sandy Paradise. We entered the water and descended down along the coral garden. We saw some beautiful anemones; found the three leaf scorpion fish around the rock out cropping with the mantis shrimp in the sand. We also saw a couple of sharks in the blue.

 

Tuesday morning our first dive was at Siaes Tunnel. We entered the water and descended down to the entrance of the tunnel at 90 feet. We spent some time exploring the sides of the tunnel and found the decorated dartfish in the sandy bottom by the exit but the current was a strong outgoing and it pushed us right through the tunnel. We exited and swam along the wall seeing a couple of sharks in the blue and lots of anthias on the top of the reef. Our second dive was at the Famous Ulong Channel. We started the dive from the moorings outside of the mouth, descended down to the beautiful coral garden and slowly drifted along the wall to the mouth of the channel. We first came across a large school of horse eyed jacks swimming in a beautiful formation. At the mouth of the channel there was no need to hook in the current was so light. We decided to lightly drift down the channel. We saw the big patch of lettuce coral and ended the dive at the giant clams. During lunch the big boat moved over to the German Channel area and our third dive was at New Drop Off. The current was outgoing and it was light. We spent some nice time exploring the wall before the hook in area: soft corals, sea fans, and schools of pyramid butterfly fish. We reached the hook in area and hooked in for a while but there was not much action so we unhooked and explored the plateau seeing a couple of turtles on top the reef. We spotted a peacock flounder on the reef. The current then switched, we turned around and went the other way. Our fourth dive was at Big Drop Off. We started the dive away from the moorings and the current pushed us wall on the right. We first passed by the ball and chain left by the Germans during their occupation of Palau from before WWI and also saw a lot of macro life including an orangutan crab, nudis and more. Back at the big boat we had a quick turnaround and went for the night dive at Big Drop Off. During the dive we saw a couple of white tip sharks out hunting, macro life and a large grouper out using our lights to hunt. Once we returned to the big boat dinner was soon ready and after the gusts were off to bed.

Wednesday morning our first dive was at the famous Blue Corner. We started the dive from the incoming side of the corner and drifted along the wall to the hook in area. We spotted several sharks in the blue and the big school of snappers. The current was light so we didn’t hook in. The current then felt like it was switching so we spent the rest of the dive on the plateau exploring. We saw the three spotted eagle rays, a couple turtles and the large school of horse eyed jacks. For our second dive we headed to German Channel. We started the dive from the Peleliu side of the channel, entered the water and descended along the slopping bottom. As we were heading to the Peleliu side cleaning station, we had a manta swim up from behind us heading towards the cleaning station, so we followed it, before we arrive there, a feathertail ray passed by going the other way but the manta made it to the cleaning station and put on a great show. We stayed there for over 35 minutes as the one manta went round and round. A larger manta came in also for two quick passes over the cleaning station but took off. The the manta left so we headed tot eh middle of the channel and drifted in but before we started our safety stop, a feathertail ray came swimming out the channel. After lunch dive three was at Turtle cove. We entered the water swam over to the hole on top the reef and descended down and into the small cavern. We saw a couple of disco clams and exited out along the wall. We drifted all the way to the corner and came up on top the plateau finding a leaf scorpion fish and some turtles. This corner is a place to stop and see all the marine life that hangs out there, jacks, rudder fish, and tropical fish and more, it’s a perfect spot to end the dive. For our fourth dive we headed a short way off the big boat to Ngedebus Coral Garden. We did a live drop and descended down to the beautiful slopping coral garden. We saw some beautiful anemones and in total found three crocodile fish, one by itself and two together further down the reef. After a surface interval the guests went for the night dive at Turtle Cove. We started the dive from the mooring and descended down to the wall, we didn’t descend down the hole on top the reef because right under the mooring this wall comes to life at night with all the orange and yellow cup coral coming out to filter feed at night. Also the divers saw banded coral shrimp, basket star fish and two huge slipper lobsters. We then returned to the big boat, had a great dinner and headed to bed.

 

On Thursday we fired up the engines bright and early and headed down to Peleliu, we secured the big boat in Camp Beck or aka South Dock and our first dive of the day was at Peleliu Corner. The current was incoming and it was nice. We entered the water and drifted along the wall and hooked in at 60 feet. We had a bunch of grey reef sharks passing by in front of the divers we spent most of the dive at the hook in area, then unhooked and drifted across the plateau. As we drifted over the other side of the corner some of the guests spotted the large school of giant trevally. For dive two we went out to West Wall. The current was incoming and it was light. We started the dive from above the red anemones and drifted along the wall finding nudibranchs, beautiful yellow soft corals and saw some sharks in the blue. In the middle of the dive the current switched so we turned around and went the other way. After lunch the third dive was at Orange Beach Coral Garden. We started the dive far down from the entrance to Camp Beck and descended down along the slopping coral garden. The current was outgoing and we drifted along the coral garden finding a crocodile fish, a sea snake, and a bunch of turtles. The current slacked off so we didn’t make it all the way down to the artifacts. So the guests asked to repeat the dive to see the artifacts. So dive four was also at Orange Beach Coral Garden. The current was still outgoing and we started just a short ways down from where we knew where the artifacts are located, drifted down and saw the landing craft, the 1944 era Coca-Cola bottle, the piles of bullets, both .50 cal and .762. We then ended the dive over the large artillery rounds. After the dive, the skiff chased down the big boat, and we went out for the night dive at German Coral Garden. They started the dive at the furthest mooring from the mouth of the channel and headed out along the slopping coral garden seeing crabs, shrimp, a bunch of lionfish and more macro life.

 

Friday morning we started the day with a repeat dive at Blue Corner. The current was a light incoming and we started from the middle mooring closer to the hook in area. Right after we entered the water we noticed that the current started to switch to outgoing, we came up on top the plateau and swam to the outgoing side of the corner. At the other side we hooked in and had some great action as the current started getting stronger. There were at least 25 grey reef sharks off the wall gliding effortlessly in the current. We spent most of the dive hooked in but once we unhooked, we drifted across and saw the three eagle rays, the school of jacks, and barracuda. For dive two we headed back out to the Blue Corner area but this time did Blue Holes. We entered the water and descended down one of the holes on top the reef into the large cavern. We spent some time taking photos of the guests with the ambient light streaming down from above. We saw the disco clams in their cracks along the side of the walls, then left the chamber and headed out along the wall towards Blue Corner. The current was very light and we came up on the top of the plateau and spent the rest of the dive on the plateau of Blue Corner. After lunch, for dive three, we returned to German Channel. We started the dive from the Koror side of the channel, entered the water and swam over to see the beautiful red anemone. At the Koror side cleaning station we sat down and waited but no mantas. We headed across the mouth of the channel to the Peleliu side cleaning station where we had the great action last time and it was awesome. There were 5 mantas putting on a great show, one after the other, round and round, it was GREAT!!! We then headed back across the mouth of the channel to the middle of the channel and started heading into the channel to end the dive. Our fourth dive was at Barnums Wall. We started the dive above the wall and entered the coral garden. We saw some anemones, nudibranchs, and a couple of turtles also a crocodile fish. Back at the big boat, dinner was soon ready and we sat down to a great thanksgiving feast of all the traditional items, turkey, ham, cranberries, stuffing, potatoes and more. After our feast, we watched our video of the charter by our video pro Jim.

 

Saturday morning, back in Malakal Harbor, our first dive was at the Jake Sea Plane. We headed out to the dive site, and descended down the mooring line to the plane wreck. We spent some time exploring the wreck and the surrounding hard coral garden seeing a small school of razor fish and some nudi’s. For our last dive of the charter we headed out to Chandelier Cave. All the divers surfaced in the four air chambers saw the stalactites and crystal formations. Then on the outside of the cave we saw the mandarin fish. Back at the big boat the guests broke down their gear, washed it and hung it upstairs to dry. Lunch was soon ready and after settling the bills the guests enjoyed their free time. At 6pm we gathered in the salon for the beer and wine party while our photo pro showed his slideshow of all the images he took during the charter and all the guests received a CD of all those images to take home with them. After the party, the guests went into town for dinner at one of the local restaurants. At 10 pm we took 4 guests to the airport to catch their flights home.

 

Sunday morning the remaining guests were able to sleep in a while and at 7am we had a continental breakfast ready and at 8am we took them ashore to be transferred to their hotels to spend at least one more day in Palau. We would like to thank everyone for joining us this week on board the Rock Islands Aggressor. Hope to see you all again soon, until then safe diving…

 

-Rock Islands Aggressor Crew