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S.S. Yongala and Wheeler Reef

Thursday, 9 September 2004 | link | tag | / Diving / Australia / QLD - Great Barrier Reef
Fantastic diving in the Great Barrier Reef again, the coral was in excellent condition and there was lots of life out and about.

First port of call was Wheeler Reef. Made up of mainly small to medium bommie clusters and meandering sand paths it was very easy to get lost, though with the amazing visibility we didn't do too badly.

Towards the end of the day, we found a large school of fusiliers being mercilessly picked off by a big school of black trevally. Absolutely huge fish, some nearly 2 metres long. White tip reef sharks cruised along underneath the carnage, picking up stunned near misses.

S.S. Yongala was an absolutely amazing dive. 110 metres of wreck, lying on its side in 30 metres of water covered from bow to stern with soft corals, sea fans, spongues and plant life. Green turtles, Qld Grouper and Coral Trout where everywhere. Black Trevally and white tip sharks cruised nearby and shovelnose and huge bull rays glided effortlessly along in the current.

A wreck is a bit difficult to dive, and often we found the current in the shipping channel a bit daunting. Mostly we were mored on the down current side, so you initially swam into the current to the far end of the wreck, turned around, and flew back to the start.

S.S. Yongala is easily the best diving on the GBR I've done so far.