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Dive Review of Explorer Ventures/Nimrod in
Australia

October, 2004, an Instant Reader Report by Leanne Wells, TX, USA (3 reports)
Report Number 1448

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Reporter
Dive Experience
251-500 dives
Where else diving
Los Roques,Venezuela; Galpagos; Cozumel; Sea of Cortez,Mexico; Indonesia
x3; Pemba Island,Tanzania; Honduras; Costa Rica; Malpelo,Colombia; Dominica
Island[Unspecified]

Dive Conditions

Weather
sunny  
Seas
choppy, currents  
Water Temp
74   to 81    ° Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
5
Water Visibility
60   to 80    Feet  
 
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
yes  
 
Enforced diving restrictions  
Had divemaster in water with us only if requested. We were asked to limit
dives to 70 minutes/750 psi.[Unspecified]  
Liveaboard?
no 
Nitrox Available?
N/A 
What I saw
Sharks
Lots 
Mantas
1 or 2 
Dolphins
1 or 2 
Whale Sharks
None 
Turtles
> 2 
Whales
None 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Corals
  4 stars
Tropical Fish
3 stars  
Small Critters
  2 stars
Large Fish
4 stars  
Large Pelagics
  4 stars
 
 
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
N/A  
Boat Facilities
N/A
Overall rating for UWP's  
N/A  
Shore Facilities  
N/A  
Comments
Separate rinse tank and tables for equipment.[None]
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Accommodations
4 stars
Food
4 stars
Service and Attitude
4 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
N/A
Dive Operation
4 stars  
Shore Diving  
3 stars  
Snorkeling
N/A  
 
 

Overall Rating

Value for $$
N/A    
Beginners
3 stars   
Advanced
4 stars    
Comments  
The operation office is in Cairnes,and as we intended to do much of our
diving in the far north in the Coral Sea and near Papua New Guinea, we were
flown by twin engine planes to the Lockhart River where we met the
liveaboard. The prevailing winds and currents prevented our going further
north than Raines Island, this was quite good diving. The best was around
Raines, where the green turtles were breeding and nesting. It was great to
be in the water with so many turtles and watch them go ashore in the late
evening to lay their eggs. There were always lots of sharks in the water
because of the presence of the turtles, mostly white tip, grey reef, and a
sprinkling of silver tip.  Tigers were in the area, but we did not see
them.
The boat is very safety conscious. every diver was issues a
unique,collapsable, rigid "see-me" signal flag in addition to
safety devises owned personally. When divers were in the water, crew were
always alert and watching the surface. All divers were logged in and out of
the water by personal check-in with the divemaster,and logs were kept of
time-in and time-out of water for the whole trip. They were very strict
about this.
  Diving was from the platform at the back of the boat, both out and back
profiles, and drift with boat drop-off and pickup. In the case of current
and diver surfacing away from pick-up site, retreival was very odd: the
dinghy circled the diver to deliver a tow rope, and then pulled the diver,
holding onto the rope and wearing all his gear, back to the liveaboard. It
worked, but I felt like chum on the end of a troll-line with all the sharks
in the water!  Did not like it at all, and always made every effort to
monitor current so that I could get back to the liveaboard.  There was
usually a buoy or anchor line for descent and safety stop if there was
current.  The crew was very attentive and helpful, with no divemaster
supervision underwater unless someone requested a guided dive. This was
probably because anchors and buoylines were set and retrieved by
divemasters at every site and they accrued a lot of time at many depths.
Good dive briefings were given before each dive, but the currents and very
large tides made things a bit unpredictable.  We returned to Cairnes by low
level flight (<1000 ft) because of our busy dive log. We logged 3-4
dives every day for 10 days.  This is a good, safe operation and I would
recommend it to anyone wishing to dive known sites in the northern reefs,
or for exploratory diving. The food is good, plentiful, but a bit bland. We
are from Texas, and carried our own hot sauce. And beware....hamburgers
have BEETS on them. 
Be sure to allow time to see Australia!  The people are remarkable in their
friendliness and cheerfulness. We only toured in the Cairnes and Port
Douglas area, but it is home to the oldest rainforest in the world and has
the most unusual plants and animals. Oz is truly a world apart!
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Other dive reports on Explorer Ventures

All Australia Dive Reviews and Reports
Diving Guide to Australia
Diving Reviews for All Dive Destinations

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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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