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Reef Report for Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Local Diving is Nearly Always Excellent Underwater
on the Great Barrier Reef

While until today the weather has been full of clouds and winds the past 10 days, recent reports we have received from DiveTheReef clients have demonstrated that whatís under the water is what matters most, and that trips on budget-oriented dive boats still offer five-star dive and snorkel experiences.

We recently heard from two couples who had chosen to dive with Cairns Dive Center, on their 2-day/1-night Great Barrier Reef trip. This trip is one of the least expensive liveaboard trips offered in the area, but underwater everyone I still visiting the same Great Barrier Reef.

Heidi and Tom wrote that "The trip to the reef was incredible, everything we wanted. We saw corals of every color, giant clams, sea turtles, rays and lots of beautiful fish. What an incredible variety of coral and wild life!

As far as I am concerned snorkeling was more spectacular than diving. Everything was so shallow. You could just float above giant fields of coral and continue to find different surprises in every nook and cranny."

Heidi wrote that as experienced snorkelers they found it easier to snorkel as a pair, rather than go on the guided snorkeling sessions. "We found it best just to go off by ourselves. There was a dive briefing before each trip so we had a layout of the area and didnít need the extra help of the crew that accompanied the snorkeling group.

The staff was extremely friendly and helpful. The cabin was great; a real nice size, with a personal bathroom, and the window made it feel bigger."

Kelsey and Chistophe were on this trip a few days later, and filed this report:

"We really enjoyed our time on the reef. It was a great snorkeling experience and we loved diving for the first time, when we took an Introductory Scuba dive.

We saw so many things, most of it we didn't know the names of, but we could identify black-tip reef sharks, sea turtles, clownfish, pufferfish, and moray eels. The reef was incredible. The diving trip was the highlight of our whole vacation in Australia."

Visibility on the Reefs near Cairns has been about 15m at most locations. Out on the Ribbon Reefs itís been 25 metres lately, and the spectacular visibility conditions at Osprey Reef in the Coral Sea has been the usual amazing 30 metres! Water temperatures have been steady at 23 degrees C. Weather forecasts are calling for winds from 15 to 20 knots, mostly sunny with the odd patch of clouds every now and then. Might just be time to pack the sunscreen and head out to the Reef!

More Information:

Cairns Dive Centreís 2-day/1-night Great Barrier Reef trip

Ribbon Reefs dive trips index

Osprey Reef dive trips index

(C) DiveTheReef The weekly reef report is written by Joel Groberg of DiveTheReef.com, who compiles them from the many conversations he has with dive staff in the area, as well as† many other local sources in the dive community.

Index of all reef reports.

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