Palau Aggressor Charter Dec 31 – Jan 7, 2018
Water Temp: 80-85 deg F
Air Temp: 85-90 deg F
Crew: Scott Editha, Ernan, Hector, Christian, Joe, and Shea
This afternoon we welcome 14 new divers and one sundeck diver to the vessel. They would come here from all over the world to see what Palau has to offer. After getting settled in the rooms and assembling the gear, we would give them a short briefing about the boat and safety. Then they would have their first dinner from Chef Christian.
After a good night’s sleep, the divers would all wake up eager to get in the water. First dive would be Sandy Paradise, a slopping coral garden that finishes off in a long sandy run to the deep. Here we would get to see the leaf scorpion fish, and mantis shrimp. Over the sand they would see schools of jacks, barracuda, and a few sharks as well. Next we would head to the amazing Siaes tunnel. A long and deep tunnel that holds the rare Helfrichs dart fish. They usually live much deeper but here in the tunnel they think they are deeper. Then the divers would travel along the wall seeing turtles Spanish mackerel, and lots of reef fish in large schools swimming above eels and nudibranchs. The next dive Siaes Corner is the first hookin dive of the week. We would swim along the wall to a point where the sharks and large schools of fish hag out. After hooking in we would fly there for a while and watch the action. The last dive of the day would be to Ulong channel. The premier dive site of this area. A beautiful hard coral wall leading up to a hookin with sharks and turtles. Then we Swim and slowly drift to the end seeing A huge lettuce coral wall, then a couple more sharks patrolling the site. Then finish off the dive with 2 100 plus year old giant clams.
This morning and every morning Chef Christian would serve us the best omelets, eggs, French toast sausage and bacon and waffles. After being filled up for breakfast we would head off to blue corner, one of the top 5 dive sites in the world. Here the divers would be treated to a fantastic wall dive leading up to the corner, after hooking in we would be treated to a friendly and curious napoleon wrasse, lots of sharks parading up and down the wall, a giant school of jacks, and red toothed trigger fish by the thousands (literally). Next after a little relaxation would be blue holes a site right down from the corner that has 4 large holes in the top of the reef leading to a big cavernous room with disco clams,, nudibranchs, and sea fans, then down the wall towards the corner where they would see lots of sharks more schools of travally and barracuda. After that would be a lunch buffet consisting of a large salad, a choice of meats, today it would be Mexican tacos day. A couple sides and some fruit. Nobody looses weight on these trips. Off to new drop off and another hook in dive where the guests would be treated to turtles, sharks and one baby eagle ray that fly’s effortlessly in front of them. For the final day dive we would take them to German channel, here the manta rays would put on a 50 minute display during feeding, swimming close, doing flips, and large angled turns back. This was a couple of the guest’s first sitting of a manta. The first night dive would be to turtle cove where the guests would slowly drift along the wall seeing huge groupers, lobsters, tons of shrimps, and beautiful yellow cup coral everywhere, a great end to the day,
Early in the morning we head down to Peleliu, a beautiful island in southern Palau, also the site of a deadly world war two battle. Some of the guests would go on a land tour during the second dive. There they would see tanks, planes, Japanese caves, a museum and the Japanese headquarters. But for the first dive we would go to Peleliu corner. A fast drift and the most advanced dive we have due to a strong current, but that current brings a lot of fun, and some of the larger sharks sometimes. Here we would see a few big reef sharks, eels, and schools of jacks. Next during the tour the remaining guests would go to west wall. A sheer wall that has barracuda and lets of small crabs, nudes, and scorpion fish. There would also be quite a few turtles checking out what the divers were doing. After lunch we would head out for a quick skiff ride to Orange beach. Here the guests would get to see a small landing vessel from the war, bottles, bullets and shells leftover. After that we would go to Barracks point. Here we would be accompanied by lots of turtles, sharks and travally. Then that night for the night dive we would see Ngedebus coral garden. A sloping garden that has lots of small shrimp, patrolling sharks, sleeping turtles. A perfect end to a great day.
Back to blue corner we head. Awe can never do a week without a second visit to this site. Again we would be treated to a show of sharks, barracuda and 1000’s of other schooling fish. Plus of course the friendly napoleon wrasse. Next we take the divers to see turtle cove during the day. First they would get to go through a small tunnel onto the wall. A cool way to start. Then travel along the wall seeing sharks big schools of fish, turtles, eels, and disco clams just to name a few. Then after a big lunch and a long nap we would head out to canyons, the divers would get to see one of the largest crocodile fish ever. A cool find. After that we head off back to German channel, this time we would see mantas many times during the dive, sometimes getting so close even the responsible people found it hard not to touch them. But nobody did and the mantas were spectacular. That night the divers would chicken out and choose a nice glass of wine and a cut-throat came of Uno, instead of the night dive.
For the last full day we would spend some time on walls. The first one would be Dexter’s wall where the guests would be treated to lots of turtles, and a gorgeous wall. After that we would take the divers to Ferns wall a site that would give us a sighting of a scorpion fish, turtles, sharks, and a beautiful sheer wall with the sunbeams shining through. After lunch we head off to Barnums Wall, where we would see a larger scorpion fish, nudibranchs, and some more turtles. This week has been packed full of turtles. The last dive of the day would be to Big Drop Off, a site where we would see a large ball and chain left over from the German occupation, just beyond that would be a nook in the wall with a couple snoozing white tip sharks. This sheer wall is full of life both on the wall and off of it. You never know where to look. That night Ernan would show his video of the week to the divers delight.
On the final morning we would go to the IRO Maru first thing. A 500 ft wreck with large guns, a cuttlefish, and on the kingposts we would see a couple small giant clams, and a plethora of anemones with some feisty tomato anemone fish. For the last dive of the week we head over to Chandelier Cave. Here we would hop from air filled cave to air filled cave seeing the stalactites. On the way out the divers turn the lights off to use the ambient light to make their way out. Once outside they would spend the rest of the dive looking for and at the elusive Mandarin fish. A beautiful multicolored fish that hides in the coral. After we get back the guests all clean up their gear with our help and then enjoy the afternoon. Some go into town or to the drop off bar to have a drink and some internet. The rest relax on the boat until the cocktail party that evening. After that they all go off the boat to enjoy their final meal on land.
It’s been a great week of diving stories and sightings. The guests were a pleasure and the weather wonderful. At 8am Sunday morning we hate to send them off. Bon Voyage and we hope to see them all again.