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Log Date: Sunday, Oct 11, 2015
Entry By: Tropic Dancer Crew



Our guests for the weeks started arriving to the Tropic Dancer around 4:30pm on Sunday afternoon. We had 15 guest from the USA Ronald, Nathalia, Howard, Jesse, Jim, Margaret, Mark, Madeline, Amity, Connor, Jim, Scott, Hoyle, Lauryn, Lauren and last but not least Ichiro from Japan. We started with a quick introduction to their cabins and then on to the dive deck were everyone started to set up their dive gear in anticipation of a wonderful week of diving. Once their gear had all been set up we all enjoyed our first of many fabulous dinners prepared by Chef Cam. Afterwards Ben the Cruise Director gave the Safety Briefing before heading off to bed for a little rest before starting our week of diving.

     Early Monday morning we moved the Tropic Dancer to our mooring at Ulong Island. After breakfast Conor covered the general dive briefing before the first dive our first at Sandy Paradise. The divers jumped in the water did their initial wait checks and began their descent on to this beautiful coral garden were our guests were introduced to the beauty of diving in Palau. We had and octopus put on a show for us dancing from coral head to coral head just amazing. Our second dive and the first hook in dive of the charter was at Siaes Corner and it was great sharks, barracudas, Napoleon Wrasse and schooling reef fish were all present and accounted for. After a great lunch our next dive was at Ulong Channel as we swam down the wall heading to the mouth of the channel we came across two large schools of jacks and barracuda as well as several sharks roaming the edge of the reef. We hooked in at the mouth of the channel for about 15 minutes before heading in the channel where drifted with a nice current to finish our dive. For the last dive of the day we pushed it back a little so it would be a dusk dive. The divers headed out to Ulong Coral Garden a slopping hard coral garden. Here we came across thousands of little glassy eyed sweepers, lion fish, and nudibranchs. After the dive guest enjoyed a delightful dinner, a couple of drink and reminisced over a great day of diving.


     On Tuesday morning we started the day with a dive out at Blue Corner. With a mild outgoing current we started with the wall on our right as we approached the hook-in area divers readied the reef hooks and all found suitable spots to hook in, the current was mild so spent about 30 minutes hooked in before drifting across the plateau for the remainder of the dive finding turtles, octopus, scorpionfish and large school of barracuda. For dive two of the day we headed to blue holes. We entered the water and swam over on the surface to the four holes on top the reef and descended down into the cavern. The ambient light that filled the cavern from above made for beautiful photos. In a crack in the wall we spotted the disco clam and as we put our dive light on it you could see the electric blue pulse across the mouth of the clam. We then exited the cavern and drifted down the reef towards Blue Corner. At the corner there was no need to hook in we just drifted across the plateau and started our ascent with the napoleon wrasse following us the whole way. Dive three was at New Drop Off. We started the dive from the incoming side of the corner. The current pushed us along quite well and we reached the hook in area. The current was moderate and all of the guests hooked in. We stayed there for a while watching a few gray reef sharks off in the blue, schooling barracuda and Jacks. After about 40 minutes we un-hooked and drifted across the reef finding juvenile lion fish, turtles as the resident Napoleon Wrasse followed along. Dive four was at Turtle Cove, We entered the water and swam over on the surface to the hole on top the reef, descended down and out along the wall. The wall is covered with soft coral and sea fans, we even found a couple of nudibranchs. At the corner we came up on top the plateau and watched the sharks, school of snapper and rudder fish. We continued along and saw a couple of turtles and a scorpion fish. After a wonderful dinner we headed out to German Coral Garden for our night dive. It was a very relaxing night dive we spotted a huge Plourabranch (a nudibranch the size of a dinner plate), some smaller nudibranchs, some sharks, and a hiding octopus.


   Wednesday dive number one we were off to Big Drop Off, All the guests enjoyed the drift along the wall; we saw a lot of macro life, nudi’s, a couple of turtles and sleeping white tips on the sandy bottom. For dive two divers drop in at Turtle Cove where we started the dive by dropping down the hole on top the reef and out along the wall were we head two large gray reef sharks checking all of the divers out for a good fifteen minutes of the dive. Towards the end of the dive we travel up to the top of the wall finding two small hawksbill turtles munching away on the some soft coral. For the third Dive of the day we headed in to Wonder Channel where we did a dusk dive at Clam City. At clam City we seen a ton of nudibranchs, flatworms and of course Giant Clams. On our safety stop we were joined by a group of squid who put on a show for us as we waited out our three minutes.


Late Wednesday night we moved the big boat to Wonder Channel to hide from the forecasted high winds on Thursday. Our first dive on Thursday morning was at Neco Channel. It was a moderate current and visibility was around 40ft. We spotted turtles, nudis, pipefish and much more. The second dive of the day was at Caroline’s Reef and the current was a little bit crazy, this dive was more of a ride then a dive. We were pushed up, down, backwards and forwards most of the guests thought it was quite fun. For number three we headed over to Wonder Channel which was basically a repeat of dive two once more a lot of fun. We spotted Pipe Cleaner Nudibranch, Banded Pipefish, turtles and schooling reef fish of all colors. Dive four was actually not a dive but a snorkel at the world famous Jellyfish Lake. Jellyfish Lake is a land locked marine lake with approximately 13 million non-stinging Jellyfish. The fifth dive and our night dive was at the Rose Garden a slopping coral garden in the inside lagoon. Our guests spotted many nudibranchs, lobsters, squid, flatworms and crabs hiding in the rocks.


Early Friday morning we moved the Tropic Dancer out of Wonder Channel and back out to the German Channel area. Our first dive was at German Channel. It was towards the end of the incoming current and the visibility was great. We entered the water on the Koror side of the channel and stopped at the red anemone. We also were lucky enough to spot a thin ghost pipe fish right next to the red anemone. We then headed to the Koror side cleaning station. There was a manta getting cleaned as we arrived, most of the guests were able to see her, while she did one last circle over the cleaning station and left. We waited around to see if she would return but didn’t so we headed across to the Peleliu side cleaning station. There we had a great show with two mantas. Then the current switched and we got pushed out of the channel and did our safety stop. For dive two we went out to Ngemelis Wall. We saw a couple sharks and some nudi’s. For dive three we headed out to Barnum’s Wall. We photographed the beautiful anemones and had a swim with a turtle. For dive for we went back to German Channel. This was the start of the incoming current so the visibility was not as good as this morning but we still saw two mantas, and a mantis shrimp. After the dive the big boat started heading back to Koror. For the final meal we had a Thanksgiving day feast prepared by Chef Cameron and before everyone went into a food coma guest watched the Video of the Week.  

We woke up Saturday morning and our first dive was at The Iro. We had a nice encounter with an octopus along the deck of the wreck and all the guests enjoyed the red anemones with the tomato anemone fish. As we headed back to the bow of the wreck we saw a group of squid. Our second dive we headed out to Chandelier Cave. We surfaced in all four air chambers to take photos of the stalactites and outside the cave we found the mandarin fish and three spiny-devil fish so ugly their cool. We also saw a banded coral snake. After an afternoon of cleaning, drying and packing scuba gear, we gathered in the salon at 6pm for the cocktail party and watch a photo slideshow of the week and soon after all the guests headed off into town for dinner. Sunday morning we said our goodbyes as the guests headed off to their hotels. We would like to thank all of our guests for joining us this week aboard the Tropic Dancer, hope to see you all again soon…


         -Tropic Dancer Captain and Crew