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Rock Islands Aggressor :

 

Log Date: Sunday, Feb 05, 2017
Entry By: Rock Islands Aggressor Crew









 



Sunday afternoon we started our pickups and welcomed on board 18 guests from the U.S. We started with an introduction to their cabins and on the dive deck everyone set up their dive gear. We checked cert cards and headed up stairs for the vessel orientation and safety briefing. After the briefing we sat down to dinner. After dinner some guest went to sleep and some still mingled with the crew and friends.

 

Early Monday morning the big boat started up and headed straight towards Ulong Island Area. We served breakfast and covered the general dive briefing and Reef Hook Briefing. After we headed downstairs to the dive deck, we checked our nitrox percentage and loaded the guests gear on the skiff. Our first dive of the charter was at Sandy Paradise. We entered the water, checked our weight and descended down to the sandy bottom. We then swam along where the sandy bottom meets up with the sloping coral garden. We found the out rock cropping with hundreds of glassy eye sweeper. On that rock out cropping we saw three Leaf scorpion fish and a Mantis shrimp. We continue swimming shallow on the right and saw lots of school of fish like, school of Barracuda, school of Jacks, school of Scad and Fusilier too. Some white tip Shark resting at the bottom and gray reef Shark swimming. For our second dive we head down to famous Ulong Channel. We tied up to a mooring and do our entry. There was strong surface current but we did manage to swim down to the wall. We hooked in at the mouth of channel but did not stay too long because we only saw few shark. We drift into the channel and as we go in further the current pick up. We saw school of Crescent tail, beautiful coral formation especially the big patch of Lettuce coral and end our dive with two Giant clam sitting side by side. After lunch we go to Siaes Corner for our third dive of the day. The current was mellow and we did the wall on our left side. We saw a big school of Gray school together with School of Moorish idol at the beginning of the dive. When we reach the corner we still hooked in even though current is light and still saw lot of shark and fish. We drifted to the shallow on top of beautiful coral garden after hooking in and do our safety stop while watching variety of tropical fish to end our dive. Our last dive of the day was at Ulong Coral Garden. We started the dive above the coral garden and went along with the shallows on the left. We found several anemones and some of them are balled up. There are big Marble Grouper too hiding underneath big Coral Head. We came back to the boat and have dinner and after dinner we watched movie OCEANS.

 

Tuesday morning our first dive was at the famous Blue Corner. The current was a light outgoing current and we started the dive from the far mooring. When we reached the hook in area the current switched and we swam across the top of the reef to hook in on the other side. While swimming across the top of the reef we saw three Baby Eagle Ray, some Turtles. When we reach the hook in area at incoming side of the wall we saw big school of jacks and more sharks so we hooked in and watched the show.. For dive two we headed out to New Drop Off. We started our dive at the incoming side doing live drop entry. When we hit the water we descend immediately and proceed drifting with our wall on our right hand side. We reach the hook in area with raging water. We hook in for a long time with several sharks and school of fusilier in the blue water. We drift on top of the plateau saw octopus and when we reach other side we start to ascend and end our dive. Our third dive of the day was at Turtle Cove. We entered the water and went right to the hole to the cavern, some went right to the wall and enter the small cavern and saw Disco clam. We then continued our dive wall on the right with lots of beautiful color of soft corals and sea fans. When we passed the corner the current shoot us so we end our dive far from where we started. For dive four we went to Big Drop Off with only two divers. To start off the dive the current was incoming and it was light. We started exploring the wall on our right hand side. We saw Napoleon Wrasse, couple Morays, lots of lion Fish. Before the dive end the current switched to out going and end our dive exploring the swallow on our right. We came back to the boat with our drink order waiting for us. After dinner we watched the documentary of Palau during world war II.

 

Early Wednesday morning we fired up the engines and headed down to Peleliu, we dropped anchor in Camp Beck, aka South Dock and our first dive of the day was at Peleliu Corner. Water was rough because of the wind pick up coming from South West Direction. We start our dive at incoming side and drifted wall on our right hand side. There is not much current so we decided not to hook in instead just drift along the edge of top of the reef, saw sharks, turtles, barracuda and come up because we don’t have much time for our bottom time. For dive two we headed out to Barrack’s Point. This dive site is a beautiful sloping coral garden in the middle and both walls at the end. So we started the dive doing a live entry because there is no buoy around the area .WE drifted with our wall on the right and came up to beautiful sloping coral garden. We saw lots of tropical fish with lots of turtle both Hawksbill and Green sea turtle. For dive three we went to headed out to Barrack’s Point. During second dive seven guests went out to do Peleliu land tour about WWII, instead of diving. They spent a couple of hours on a guided tour of one of the bloodiest battles of the Pacific, learning about the war and Peleliu then and the island life today. After the dive we picked up seven of the guests from the land tour and have our lunch. For our dive three we headed out to Orange Beach Coral Garden. This dive site is a beautiful sloping coral garden that was the landing beach during WWII so artifacts can be seen mixed in the coral garden. We started the dive in front of the channel to South Dock and went with the shallows on our right. The current switch so fast and we end up turning the opposite direction doing shallow on our left. We saw a big bomb in the sandy rubble area. We saw the piles of bullets, crocodile fish and juvenile ribbon eel and spent the rest of the dive exploring the coral garden. We move the big boat after the dive to German Channel area again from South dock Peleliu and did our fourth dive to Barnum’s wall. The current was a light incoming so we started wall on the right hand side. It was nice and easy dive a good way to look for critters that we saw like nudis and anemone fish. After the dive we come back to the big boat and have our dinner. The guests watch the slide show of fish after dinner on what to expect and see in Palau waters.

Thursday morning we decided to come back to Blue corner. We started the dive at incoming side of blue corner, drifted along the wall on our right and come up to hook in area, watch the show several minutes with shark and school of jack and fish. After hooking in we drifted on top of the reef saw a lot of fish and slowly ascend when we reach the other side of the wall. For our second drive we go to Big drop off do a mooring drop and check the big ball and chain to start with. Then drifted along the wall on our left hand side. Nice and easy dive. We saw critters on the wall, nudis, long nose hawk fish and several turtle swimming in the blue! Come back to the boat and have lunch and after lunch for third dive we gone to German Channel. Started in Peleliu side with a mild surface current. Then we check out both cleaning station but did no luck to saw Manta. We saw sharks, tuna, bait ball though and drifted inside the channel. Channel itself is beautiful because of the coral formation from soft coral to hard coral. For our fourth dive we headed to Fern’s wall explore the beautiful wall with lots of different color of soft and hard coral current with so we turn around at some point. Stay longer in the shallow area where we saw lots of fish and anemones. We are lucky to saw a rare species of ray called Ornate Eagle Ray, Whip tail ray and Manta. Come Back to the boat and have wonderful dinner.

 

Friday morning we did German Coral Garden. We started the dive dropping on top of Red anemone. Went to Koror side cleaning station and sat several minutes. After waiting and no Manta show up we drifted to shallow on our right hand side. There we saw bunch of turtles, school of blue lined snapper together with school of goat fish. Almost end of the dive we saw feather tail ray. For our second dive we went out to Fern’s wall. Drifted wall on our right looking for critters like flat worm, anemones, Nudis, Disco clam and to the blue several shark and spade fish swimming along. Ten minutes before end of the dive the current switch on us and decided to turn around and go with the flow. For our third dive we went over Carp’s Corner a small corner yet not a hook in dive. Beautiful wall covered with soft coral and sea fans easy and relax dive. For our last dive in outer reef we went back to German Channel. Started the dive to Peleliu side from there we check the cleaning station did not stop and check because there was a group of diver already so we continue and sat down Koror cleaning station. On our way to Koror side cleaning station we saw school of black snapper, sharks, Jacks and barracudas. Nothing happens so we decided to drift inside the channel. We saw a Manta from the distance real quick because it just passed by, drifted inside the channel and do our safety stop. Back at the big boat we sat down to a final supper that consisted of a prime rib feast. We also had some great extras, roasted potatoes, mixed veggies, and Yorkshire puddings. For dessert we had a banana cheesecake. We then moved over to the couch to watch our video of the charter put together by our video pro Jim while the boat was under way back to Malakal Harbor. Everybody enjoyed this look back at the week of diving.

 

Saturday morning we started with one last wreck dive at The Iro. This wreck is a tanker ship during WWII r sank in rock islands western lagoon during the American bombing run of Desecrate One in March 1944. We did our back rolls into the water, and descended down to the bow. We stay on top of the deck exploring the wreck so the beautiful and big structure of the king post and superstructure. When we reach the stern and seen the big gun we came up and check the tripod with big patch of tomato anemone. We spent several minutes watching and taking photos of the anemones and proceed to the bow and surface. Our last dive of the charter was at Chandelier Cave. Ten people went to the dive but one stay outside just to check the mandarin fish and some cool critters. Some went into the first air pocket but then come out and the rest continue the dive into the cave system. When they are finished exploring the cave they come out and explore the coral garden outside. We saw mandarin fish, razor fish, signal goby, pajama cardinal and lucky to saw a sea snake too. 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 some guests went ashore to try to check emails. 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 the guests received their copies 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 after they finished dinner we picked them up from the dock and returned to the boat for the night. Some decided to stay and have Pizzas on the boat. One guest have a flight midnight so we dropped him to fisheries at 10:00 pm and the driver picked him up to transfer at the airport. Four guest leave too at 2:00am and transfer to airport.

 

Very early Sunday morning we took 13 guests ashore to be transferred to the airport for their flight home and later the remaining guests woke up to continental breakfast and just before 8am we started loading luggage on the skiff and said our goodbyes as we took the guests ashore to transfer them to their hotels so they could spend a couple extra days 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, until then safe diving…