Palau Aggressor Charter November 12-19th, 2017
Water Temp: 80-85 deg F
Air Temp: 85-90 deg F
Crew: Dan, Shea, Herence, Dustin, Hector, Ernan, Jun
On Sunday we welcomed aboard 15 divers from around the World. The crew helped to set up the guests dive gear, and make sure everything was ready, after which we gave an orientation to the vessel and safety briefing, before sitting down to dinner prepared by Chef Shea. After dinner we made some final preparations and then hit the sack to get a good night’s rest, ready for the week ahead.
Monday we did our “check out” dive on the Helmet wreck, a Japanese sub chaser that was sunk in WWII during the Desecrate One operation. Decent vis, and we found some Crocodile fish, twin spot gobies, and some Sake bottles and other artifacts from the period. At 1030 we did a second wreck, The Iro, another casualty of the war. Tomato anemones cover the stern king posts, and a bunch of Squid around the mooring line and an octopus made for some nice photos. We had finished lunch and the Palau Aggressor was now moored at German channel. Our third dive was Barnums wall then it was the famous German channel look for some Mantas, no luck today, but we did see an Eagle Ray and several Sharks at the cleaning station.
Our first dive on Tuesday was at New Drop Off, our first “hook in”, we had a mild current so after a brief hook in we drifted across the huge plateau where we found some Turtles and Moray Eels. Dive two at Turtle Cove where there were hundreds of schooling jacks and snappers and a very large school of barracuda hanging around the edge of the very colorful soft coral covered wall. Our third dive was at the world famous Blue Corner and another opportunity to hook in. As we cruised down the wall on the way to the corner we passed quite a few reef sharks and just before arriving to our hook in spot we were greeted by the ever curious and friendly resident Napoleon Wrasse.
Wednesday, the engines fired up early and we motored south in the gentle swell as the sun came up over the islands. With the big boat safely anchored at Camp Beck, on Peleliu Island we headed out for dive number one, Peleliu Cut. Dive two at West Wall, produced a couple of Turtles and great vis! Orange Beach was not only the site for dive three, but also the code name for one of the beaches that the US Marines assaulted during WWII. 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. Those that are interested can join the land tour which takes in the Museum, and the cave system that the Japanese soldiers took refuge in while the Island was shelled. Dive four was at Barracks Point, and while the guests enjoyed the reef wall, Captain Dan moved the big boat back north. Then we did our night dive at Ngesebus Coral Garden.
Our Thursday trip to Blue Corner had a nice current and even more sharks than the previous day. After watching the sharks put on a show we drifted across the plateau again to find a few turtles and the school of barracuda, and as predicted the friendly Napoleon Wrasse, it’s probably about time we started thinking of a name for him. Our fourth dive of the day was at German Channel and today we were blessed with a Camy , one of the resident Mantas at the cleaning station.
Having made our way over to Ulong Island in the night we started Friday with an exciting dive watching the Bumphead Parrot fish spawning at Sandy Paradise. We then went to Siaes Tunnel to try and find some of the rare critters that call it home, including Frog Fish, Pygmy Seahorses and Decorated Dart Fish. We did a fun drift after lunch at Ulong Channel which ends with a spectacular patch of Lettuce Coral and some Giant Clams.
Our first dive on Saturday morning was at Chandelier caves which comprises of a series of air chambers running back into the rock islands. Surfacing inside the air pockets divers can take out their regulators and breathe while checking out the stalactites and crystals. Out the front of the caves is a good spot to see Mandarin fish darting around the coral rubble and a spiny devi8l scorpion fish. The last dive of the week was at the “Jake” sea plane. Once used for aerial reconnaissance this Jake now sits in a coral garden in about 50ft of water. It is great for Photographers as the plane is largely intact and would have to be one of the most photographed underwater plane wrecks anywhere.
After breakfast on Sunday we said our farewells as the guests departed for their various hotels, and onward journeys. We have had a good week of sightings with Mantas and heaps of Sharks, and everyone had a good time. We wish everyone safe travels and hope to see ya’ll again soon on the Palau Aggressor II. Keep blowing Bubbles!