Thailand Aggressor Captain’s Log 30 Dec-6 Jan 2018
*Air Temp. 30c
*Water Temp. 28c
* Visibility 20m
Cruise Director: Clive
Deck hand: Rong
Deck Hand: Bank
Sunday – Zodiac, Boulder city, West of Eden , Anitas Reef x2
Monday- Elephant Head Rock, Deep Six, Elephant Head Rock Stonehengex2
Tuesday- Three Trees, Christmas point, Koh Bon Ridge, Koh Bon Bay x2
Wednesday– Koh Tachai pinnacle 1 Koh Tachai Pinnacle 2, Koh Tachai pinnacle, Koh tachai Reef.
Thursday : Richelieu rock x4
Friday – Koh Bon North ridge , Koh Bon West ridge.
Guests arrive to Thaplamu Pier and board the Thailand Aggressor via dinghy by 5:00pm. With the crews help, our divers set up their gear and head to the main lounge for the weekly overview followed by a 5 course family style Thai dinner.
What a nice wake up, an amazing sunrise on the last day of the year. Our guests had the dive safety briefing and then a briefing about what and where we would be going this week. We all kitted up and headed for our check dive at zodiac this reef offers the chance to slowly get back into diving as a few guests had not been in the water for a while, we enjoyed the dive with stingray spotted and a giant moray under a rock, we next headed south to Boulder city and saw many unicorn fish and again a giant moray peering out of a crack. We then headed up to island 7 to west of eden and visited our resident mantis shrimp. Some guests saw Dogtooth tuna passing. On the fourth dive we saw 5 stingrays all feeding in the sand. Our night dive was also at anitas reef and our guests found crabs and lobsters. Back aboard we settled down to a documentary and wished each other a happy new year and headed to bed….
Happy New Year from Thailand Aggressor! We kick off the year 2018 with a dive at one of our favorite spots, Elephant Head. Divers enjoy spacious swim throughs and a few of our resident creatures including the blue ribbon eel, the pygmy pipehorse, and the green sea turtle along with a variety of other marine animals. Next we head over to Deep Six and have a relaxing drift dive along the large boulder walls covered in green tube corals surrounded by schooling bannerfish. After a hearty lunch of pad thai, green curry, and shrimp tempura some guests have a nap while others sunbathe on the top deck before our next dive at Elephant Head. The third dive is even better than the first as currents had calmed a bit and the visibility also improved and we saw no many schooling oriental sweetlips, snapper, and fusiliers. Our final day dive is at Stonehenge which is very nice then back to the boat for another delicious meal. In the evening we finish our day with a night dive at Anita’s Reef and a cup of hot cocoa & Kahlua. What a great way to start the year!
We had moored night on the east side of island 8 and saw a great sunrise, we headed north to 3 trees and had a very nice drift dive our guests saw many groupers that were sleeping and they also got many great photographs of the huge barrel sponge that dominates this site, for our second dive we moved the boat to the north tip of island 9 and dived at Christmas point, this site is mostly a drift dive with the last part around the bend and is a good spot for hunting for nudibranch whilst on the safety stop, we found a few different species including the flabalina. We then head north to Koh Bon, a small limestone islet consisting of a main ridge where many fish gather around the cleaning station. We do one dive at the ridge and enjoy the nice soft corals covered in glass fish and home to many marbled grouper and Maldivian sponge snail. The fourth dive is in the bay where we slowly meander around the sloping coral, enjoying the clear visibility and tranquil underwater atmosphere. One group even saw a Napolean wrasse. After dinner, we complete the evening with a night dive in the bay and enjoy many nocturnal creatures including cuttlefish, huge hermit crabs, and free swimming moray eels.
Continuing north, we arrive bright and early to Koh Tachai where we spend the entire day. Guests chose if they dive the reef or pinnacle depending on their personal preferences. The pinnacle is completely submerged and due to its location, has become a magnet for nutrients in water which has resulted in a plethora of soft corals and brings many fish. In the coral gardens we find beautiful nudibranchs, anemone fish, and porcelain crabs. Above us is a massive school of chevron barracuda as well as hunting blue fin trevally and a couple giant trevally. All that combined with schooling blue and yellow fusiliers completes an absolutely stunning site to see. Some chose the sloping coral reef which runs alongside the island itself, and were content to find clear blue waters, and nice ambient lighting in the shallows. There were moray eels and many variety of butterfly and surgeon fishes. Afterwards, we have a delicious dinner of Japanese pork and miso soup and also celebrate a special anniversary of two of our guests. Another wonderful and unforgettable day in the Andaman Sea.
After a good nights sleep at the Surin Islands, we cast off the mooring line and made our way to Richelieu Rock, the rock lays about 7 nautical miles east of surin and just breaks the surface at low water, We planned to spend the whole day here as the conditions both above and below water were excellent, the first dive was the deepest and we took our guests to see the resident sea horse this is a rare species for us to find it is a thorny sea horse and the only one we know of in the area. On our second dive we headed to the south pinnacles and had some great encounters with a school of Trevally that were patrolling the reef. On our third dive the viz improved again and was at least 75ft we could see a long way off from the rock and saw yellow tail barracuda and a cuttlefish in the mid water. On our fourth dive we heard one of our guides banging his tank with joy and as we approached we saw him give us the sign for Harlequin shrimp, wow what a find that was the little critters were feeding on a starfish our guests got video and also some great shots, it was so nice to see these very rare shrimps, lets hope they stay in the same spot for next week, after a fab day of diving we settled down to some of our guests movies from other trips then headed off for an early nite.
We had slept at the island called Koh Tachai and moved the boat early in the morning to Koh Bon island, we elected to drop in the bay and our divers saw octopus and also a rather dead sea snake maybe this was the left overs from a moray out hunting last night. On the second dive the current picked up a bit so we did a drift dive on the north side it was a fast dive with most divers seeing the whole of the reef, on the drift we saw an octopus and a small Napolean wrasse also sighted was a very large grouper that must have been at least 4 ft long and around 150llbs in weight, the end of the trip had ended well and we all got back in the dinghy and headed back to the mother ship for our cruise back to our home port and our end of trip BBQ and video show….
We wake up around 7 and guests are served their usual made to order hot breakfast as crew loads up the luggage. By 8:00am we head to the pier by dinghy where our transfers are waiting to take everyone to their next destination. A huge thank you to our Aggressor divers for another amazing week on board. ‘Khap Khun Krap’ and See you next time! And a Happy New Year to all