3 Day Cod Hole and Ribbon Reefs
A beautiful Sunny Monday Morning In Cairns as Spirit of Freedom was dicked on the whalf waiting for the 11 guests to embark on their 3 day Cod Hole Adventure. The Weather was looking very good with only 5-10 Knot winds. Once everyone was on board we headed out to Norman Reef, Playgrounds, were we jumped in for 2 dives. Exploring the Outer reefs of Cairns, most of the guests it was their first dive on the GBR.
Tuesday was a big 5 dive day, starting things off at our faithful site… Steves Bommie on Ribbon Reef #3. With a bit of current running through it was filled with many types of schooling fish, Jacks, Barracuda, GT and Fusiliers. Then onto Crack A Jack RR#5 for another Pinnacle Dive. Also once again being a pinnacle it attracts a lot of fish life. With really nice conditions out on the reef, we then decided to be a little adventurous and discovered a new site! I jumped into check out the potential at the top of RR38/bottom of RR#9, there on that outer edge of the reef lies an awesome wall with coral bommies along the way, the coral life was looking supreme. All a long the wall were tones of Nudiebranchs. We dubbed it Nudi Rudi!! We then headed up to RR#9 ¾ for a double dive at Monolith, the afternoon dive we enjoyed the wall and the massive expanse of amazing Pavona Coral. The once the sun had set we jumped in for our night dive. Greeted by plenty of Grey Reef Sharks and White Tips and GTs cruising around. An exciting and intense night dive for first time night divers; Paul, Aileen and Nath.
Once again with great conditions an really big tides we decided to do something a little different; a Live Drop and drift dive at Vertical Gardens Southern Wall. With a ripping current of 4/5, we were flying!!! Zipping past off the amazing Gorgonian sea Fans and corals. An almost effortless dive which involved little to no kicking unless you spotted something you wanted to look at on the wall for longer than a few seconds. Then we headed over to Lighthouse Bommie for a chilled one, cruising around the busy and colourful pinnacle.
After lunch we steamed up to RR# 10 for our dive at The Cod Hole! The weather has not disappointed and we had almost glass out conditions with good visibility. We all jumped into greet our Potato head friends…. The famous Potato Cod. 2 Cods showed up to the feed, the guests enjoyed an up close and personal experience with these friendly creatures. To round things off and keep the excitement of adventure, our skipper Ross decided we check out a site we don’t usually get to dive unless all the variables match up. With low winds, good timing and out going tides, we jumped in at Black Coral Bommie in between RR#10 and Lizard Island, a small pinnacle rising up from 20m to about 5m, literally covers in Black Coral, Feather Stars and Glass Fish EVERYWHERE. We spotted many Nudibranchs and during our safety stop the top was covered in different species of Anemone Fish, literally covering the top. Don’t worry guys we have found Nemo and all his family, cousins and friends!!!
We then headed for Lizard Island where we would enjoy a stunning sunset and watch the moon rise. Tonight was a special event as it was a Super Blue Blood Moon Eclipse. This trip was full of adventure and that’s what we are all about our here on Spirit Of Freedom.
Until next time… No Troubles… Just Bubbles
Trip Director SOF