Palau Aggressor Charter January 1st to 8th 2017
Water Temp: 80-85 deg F
Air Temp: 85-90 deg F
Crew: Dan, Shea, Ripon, Hector, Joe, Herence, Editha
On Sunday afternoon we welcomed onboard our new dive buddies from around the World. Once they were checked in, and helped to set up their gear, the guests were given a safety briefing from the Captain followed by a delicious dinner, prepared and served by Shea and Editha. Afterwards it was then time to get a good night’s sleep. You need to be well rested before beginning a wonderful week of diving in Palau.
Our first dive on Monday morning, after we departed the dock was on the Helmet wreck, one of the casualties of WWII. Unlike many wrecks in Palau, which were salvaged after the war, the Helmet wreck wasn’t discovered until the eighties. As a result the divers can find many artifacts like sake bottles, weapons, cooking pots and gas masks on the wreck. . Dive two was at yet another famous wreck in Palau the much larger Iro, a fleet oil tanker, meeting its fate in the outer lagoon after heavy fire from both US submarine and airstrike attacks. Upon this massive five hundred foot tanker divers found can find octopus and on top of the massive king posts tower a large colony of tomato anemones and clown fish. During lunch the Palau Aggressor II moved down to German Channel, and our first dive on the outer reef was at Barnums wall, a beautiful slopping coral garden with turtles, schools of fusiliers, and if you’re lucky a Leopard shark. Our last dive for the day was at German Channel itself and we were lucky to spot large reef Manta being clean at the cleaning station.
Our first dive on Tuesday was on the World famous Blue Corner. Sharks, Barracuda, Jacks, Napoleon Wrasse eagle rays, and so much more, easy to understand why this dive site has the reputation it does as it never disappoints! With plenty of Sharks hanging in the blue water it made for an exhilarating start to the day. Dive two at Turtle cove allowed us to drop into the chimney on the reef, which exits on the wall at about 90 feet, a couple of this weeks divers opted to do their DEEP specialty course and sitting on the sand at the ext made a perfect spot to do some skills! Afterwards we explored the most amazing reef top, which is like swimming in a huge aquarium.
Our first dive on Wednesday morning was back at German Channel, and this time the early risers were rewarded with a special treat of three Mantas at the cleaning station. After breakfast we fired up the engines and we motored south in the gentle swell towards Camp Beck, on Peleliu Island. Peleliu was the site of some of the fiercest fighting in the Pacific, and the island still bears some of the scars that serve as a reminder to that time. With the Palau Aggressor safely at anchor we headed out for a land tour on the Island to take in some of the history. After lunch we went to Orange Beach, more Clown Trigger fish, Moorish Idols, and buried in the corals, some .50 Caliber rounds, and Mortar and Artillery shells.
Thursday our first dive was back to Blue Corner with a nice current and plenty of Sharks, which left the divers excited for more. No one was disappointed with the second dive at New Drop Off, after watching the shark show at the hook in site, we explored the Plateau and found several Turtles, which are so used to divers they usually stay put and pose for photos. The third dive after lunch was at Virgin Blue Hole, more of a tunnel than a cavern, exiting on the wall, we made our way through canyon like cuts in the reef and found a crocodile fish.
On Friday we went to Ulong Island, recently famous for being the host of Survivor Palau. Our first dive was at Siaes Corner, we saw some huge schools of Moorish Idols, Jacks, and more than 200 Grey reef Sharks, quite simply amazing!. Dive two was at Ulong Channel. We hooked in at the mouth of the channel, and hung out and watched the Sharks, Barracuda, Jacks and more. After we unhooked we drifted gently down the channel and spotted some interesting macro life like a beautiful tiny Flabelina Nudibranch. After lunch we went to Sandy Paradise and found some Leaf Scorpion fish and some Mantis Shrimp.
Kicking the day off with a dive on the Chuyo Maru, a Japanese wreck in the harbor, was a good way to wake up on Saturday morning, then after a quick break we loaded the skiff back up and the guests were shuttled over to Chandelier Caves. A small cave with three air pockets inside allows the guest to dive down into the dark but then surface every few minutes to take photos of the beautiful stalactites that hang from the ceiling. After exiting the cave we had a bit of time to explore the area just underneath the skiff. Mandarin Fish swim around in the coral rubble and the Scorpion Devil Fish slowly trudges along the bottom. Not a bad way to end a week of diving and relaxing aboard the Palau Aggressor II. The guests were quite famished after the morning excursion and were presented with a delicious lunch to fuel back up before heading to town for a few hours of exploring. Just after six o’clock the guests turned up in the salon and sat down for a drink with the crew. We all exchanged stories from the week and enjoyed a slideshow put together by the photo pro. After about an hour the guests were on their way to town for an evening of dinner and dancing off the boat.
Sunday morning at eight o’clock. Some of the guests will be returning home while others will continue their travels throughout the Pacific. Either way we wish everyone a safe trip and we cannot wait until you return to dive with us again. Thanks for the great week!!