November 22, 2003

Bundaberg Liveaboard - Day 3: Lady Musgrave Island

Last day of diving. We have to leave around 9AM back to Bundaberg so we jump in the water around 6AM for the first dive (this is how it should always be). Turtles are everywhere around the boat. When leaving, we were able to see a couple of manta rays again, but sadly none underwater. The return to Bundaberg was made nice by a couple of dolphins that came to follow us and jump around for at least one hour while the boat was running over 10kt !

Overall, I'm quite pleased with the liveaboard. The conditions were great, the food made by Michael was absolutely great, Denis has been great onboard and was frustrated as I was by the diving restrictions.

If I could find 8 other experienced divers, I would charter this boat without any hesitation for a 6-day trip. That would mean unlimited diving in all sort of conditions and we would get the most of the drift dives around Lady Musgrave which are obviouslly magnificent. It is crystal clear that what I did on this liveaboard was only kindergarten diving and we barely scratched the surface of what the diving can be like here.

Should you be interested in the diving here, drop me a note. You would have without a doubt a better diving than anywhere around Cairns at the fraction of the cost.

Sadly, Queensland regulations are a hassle for divers. The backpacker market is absolutely huge and most people diving are not interested in it but rather do it to come back home and say 'I have been diving the Great Barrier Reef'. The certification process is miserable and so is the diving quality. It comes of no surprise that just like Koh Tao, there are many diving incidents in Queensland. This leads to hyper-restrictive regulations which are necessary to prevent dropping newly open water divers that suck a tank in 20 minutes in perfect conditions in a middle of a strong current.

What can you expect when most of the instructors are also backpackers and that thought it could be nice to stay around for while and that came straight from Open Water to Instructors, diving in clear water with no current ? Most of them are obviouslly not even interested in diving.

#09: Location: Musgrave, SI: , Max. Depth: 12.1m, Time: 43min
#10: Location: Musgrave, SI: 2h04min, Max. Depth: 14.7m, Time: 42min

Chromodoris sp., chromodorididae nudibranch Chromodoris sp., chromodorididae nudibranch Coral reef in Lady Musgrave Island Scorpionfish Coral reef in Lady Musgrave Island Shovelnose ray (guitarfish) unindentified nudibranch Shovelnose ray (guitarfish) Coral reef in Lady Musgrave Island Coral reef in Lady Musgrave Island Coral reef in Lady Musgrave Island Sea cucumber Turtles getting curious on what's happening on the boat Dolphins accompagnying us on our way back to Bundaberg Dolphins accompagnying us on our way back to Bundaberg Dolphins accompagnying us on our way back to Bundaberg Dolphins accompagnying us on our way back to Bundaberg Dolphins accompagnying us on our way back to Bundaberg Dolphins accompagnying us on our way back to Bundaberg Dolphins accompagnying us on our way back to Bundaberg Dolphins accompagnying us on our way back to Bundaberg Dolphins accompagnying us on our way back to Bundaberg The result of coral spawning The result of coral spawning

 
Posted by stephane at November 22, 2003 12:59 AM
Comments

hi stephane,

erlend and i are checking out your fab photo's, thanks. Personally, i would like it if you could in the list of photo's above describe the animal/ shot- for the ignorant (and blissful!).

of course, if you do get that boat up north, we/i would be interested, should the presence of such meagrely experienced "divers" ( i presume) not be overly burdensome.

drop me a line if you feel like it, or want someone to hang with in brisneyland. otherwise- happy travels!

ciao, barb.

Posted by: barbara on November 26, 2003 07:51 AM

Hi Barbara,
I had the reply of David James about the boat. Chartering it would cost A$11,500 + A$18 reef tax per diver, all for a 6-day trip and they could take divers up to llwelin reef that haven't been fished for up to 20 years and were only a few have been diving (dixit David James). I put someone else more used to deal with that to take care of it, but obviouslly this won't be in the pipe before next year.

As for the comments, I'm not sure what you want. Comments are already available along with camera settings, except for those damn birds where I just wrote 'birdlife' as I was not sure which was a tern or a noddie.

Posted by: stephane on November 26, 2003 08:07 AM