Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Let's Go Diving in Manly?

OK, so if you look back to a previous post you will see some pictures from a snorkeling experience down at Shelly beach in Manly, its a marine reserve known as Cabbage Tree Bay. This time we decided to take on the bay scuba style! With relos and family friends staying for the weekend in Manly we easily put together a crack scuba squad! One of our fine team members is an ex Navy Seal, experienced in missions from submarines! I wasn't too concerned with his abilities in 30 foot calm water conditions......although Mr PADI from the dive shop had concerns....crazy. Anyway after a lengthy process his PADI membership details finally came through, (left his card in USA) 1973 registered, instructor number 49! (they are in the 10's of thousands now). An old sea dog!

The day was HOT with blues skies,...naturally. No swell, or wind,...perfect conditions for visibility. Our only hazard was dodging all the topless sunbathers as we made our way along the beach to the waters edge....looking considerably attractive to them, in our fins and tank paraphernalia, not! Oh well, it was sea based creatures that we were in search of, not land based ones skilled in the redirection of male focus from progress.

Anyway - let's start the dive.....

The seas were angry that day my friend.... The tank air tasted stale, the masks tore at our hair, and the wild seas raced their merciless cold fingers down our necks......OK, maybe not so dramatic, and we were only in 10 feet of water to begin with, BUT it was cold and awkward to get our fins on without looking...special.

We set off on our adventure, gas bubbles trailing.......... Immediately we were presented with this amazing camouflaged monster of the sea! The FLATHEAD! 3 foot in length and nasty looking this beast is actually excellent eating! Sadly no take aways are allowed from this reserve.

He's got a pretty effective 'camo jacket'.

OK now this fish picture will kick off what I like to call, "Oh cool, a fine looking specimen of the 'Don't Know' fish species."

Yes, you guessed it, a beautiful Don't Know.

Now this fish I know. Rather than eating plants and small crabs it prefers Scotch. It's travelled some distance from the frozen lakes to be here, that's why it looks so disorientated.....trying to get used to being 'Down Under'.

A large Don't Know

This tiny Don't Know sea slug was only an inch long - but it's beauty was large. I'm thinking if Elton John lived in the sea....this would be him..... very colourful.

I think this is a large WRASSE, however I could be to avoid an ignorance 'outing' on the Internet....please meet Don't Know.

This guys looks like he means business...I didn't get much closer, I felt somewhat insecure. I don't know what he's called.

Dangerously sticking my head into a 'mini cave' I came across this! A six foot Wobbegong!!!
Yup, that right...a what? Seriously...did you go to school at all? You better google it.

Greetings from the resident Eastern Blue Grooper! He's HUGE! Think 50lbs.

Hey, my camera is NOT food.........HEY, MY ARM IS NOT FOOD! Jeeezzz.

That's right, another wobbegong!! I just like saying that name.....

If you look closely you'll see the outline of a scuba fin from one of our dive buddies from within the belly of this beast.

If you haven't googled it yet, wobbegong is part of the shark family AHHHHHHHH!!!!!!
Diving with sharks?....yes that's right, we're tough like that.

I think it's eyeing up my leg......oh please, eat my bad knee,

OK, I'm over you. NEXT!

A long blue Don't Know...but check out those sinister red/orange eyes. They're the devils work.

Cool coloured Don't Know.

You again? Another session at the sea floor buffet.

Long green Don't Know.....but AGAIN with those eyes?? Could we have accidentally swam into a fish Zombie zone?? Will Michael Jackson fishwalk past my camera, singing Fishller?

BIG GUY...thinking this is a rare fat lipped, white spotted Don't Know.

This is a HUGE sting ray! It kept rustling up the sand to hide itself after I kept finning the sand away so I could get a good photo. Seriously, models can NOT take any instructions! And...I'm spent.

Two types of sea monsters, both edible, one tasty, one with flesh marinated in Scotch. You pick.

Frozen lake sea monster asking for directions to the Krill Buffet.

Wait! Come back! didn't finish the promised the gossip on who the Grooper groped! You won't get a dime unless you talk!...... Don't you want to be famous on the Fishbowl?

The entourage.

Ted! I told you to put on SPF 30+......and don't lie to me that you did....

The Electric Cowboy of the sea.

Yeah..... Don't Know. Anyway, doesn't this one look stuck up? A fish snob.

Saw you at the beginning, YAWN.

Frozen Lake Scotch drinking sea monster adopting a new approach to Down Under worries.

Ahhhh, the prize of the angry seas. Such a rare rugged manly quality.....

You again? Did you change....seriously? Fish will do anything to get a shot at the 'Big Time' (land).

The close up, YES....YES...YES.......NO! and I'm spent.

The egg from a Port Jackson it.

This guy AGAIN??

These sea monster models are sizing each other up..... it's a tense moment....yup....IT'S A WALKOFF! (if you don't get this reference you need to see more movies)

No comment.

Hey, there's sunburnt TED sleeping the night out on his barnacle rock....poor guy....

Ladies, Gents and Gills, We have a winner!

Me? What? Something in my teeth...where? embarrassing. Excuse me, I just have to go powder my gills.

We end the adventure with an entourage of Don't Knows.


  1. That's fantastic! I love diving (am PADI certified) and you got some great pics...totally jealous as the last place I went diving was Cornwall...

  2. Very clever journaling along with the pictures, Monique. Your Dad, as usual, was shy around the camera. Ha! At least he is not saluting you in his normal manner. : ) Great photographs,Murray. Love, Mom

  3. Awesome pictures!!! You're up for National Geo by now aren't you??? Where's the Great White? Jared made us a GREAT movie of the trip,complete with sound. We'll try to figure out how to post it on Shutterfly! Thanks for the great memories... "we'll be back" Love ya and miss everybody! Kim and Mary

  4. Dont know specimens.... funny! the slug is a nudibranch I believe.