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Dive Review of Whaleshark n dive in
Australia/Ningaloo Reef

Whaleshark n dive , Jun, 2011,

by Angela Gostling, London, GB ( 2 reports). Report 6116.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 251-500 dives
Where else diving Caymans, Bonaire, BVI, Kenya, Maldives, Thailand & Burma, Cozumel, Bahamas, Indonesia, Fiji, Galapagos, Palau, Truk, Red Sea, Zante, Cyprus, PNG, Solomons, Mauritius, Comores, Belize, Turks & Caicos, Kona, Oman.
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather windy Seas choppy, surge
Water Temp 24 to 25 Celsius Wetsuit Thickness 5
Water Visibility 5 to 15 Meters

Dive Policy

Dive own profile no
Enforced diving restrictions Policy was to dive with the guide. Sites were not deeper than 30m.
Liveaboard? yes Nitrox Available? no

What I Saw

Sharks 1 or 2 Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales > 2
Corals 3 stars Tropical Fish 1 stars
Small Critters 1 stars Large Fish 1 stars
Large Pelagics 1 stars

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter 1 stars Boat Facilities 1 stars
Overall rating for UWP's N/A Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments Not that sort of dive operation.

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 3 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 4 stars Environmental Sensitivity 3 stars
Dive Operation 3 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 3 stars
Beginners 3 stars
Advanced 3 stars
Comments We undertook a lot of research before committing ourselves to the trip in terms of timing and water conditions. We were travelling in the whaleshark season and optimised the timing to enhance our chances of also seeing humpback whales, spinner dolphins and manta rays.
Unfortunately when we arrived in Exmouth the conditions were unusually windy and boats were not out whale watching. We were afraid that our live-aboard would be cancelled.
The dive team did their best - although we noticed that they did not check our c-cards. We had already submitted our diving experience by e-mail.
Well the dive team did everything they could to get us diving but weather conditions meant that we could not visit the best sites and spotter plans for whalesharks were unable to see the creatures. The windy conditions brought the surface temperature down significantly - from about 26 degrees celsius to more like 21 degrees, with water temperatures at around 24 degrees. Yes, I admit to being a wimp but despite wearing a skin and full 5mm wetsuit after 15 minutes in the water I was chilly and getting back out again after the dive was unbearably chilling, so that I couldn't dive more than a couple of times each day. Other less wimpy divers were not deterred by this - or didn't feel it quite as much - and managed three day dives and a night dive too.
The windy conditions were whipping up the water, so the visibility wasn't great, but we expected this - well it was the whaleshark and manta season, so we anticipated plankton anyway.
So we didn't get to see whalesharks or mantas but did see some humpbacks when on the surface. However, we did see the most enormous turtles and some fascinating sea snakes - as well as the usual suspects but not a lot of them. I'm sure we didn't see Ningaloo at its best because of the weather conditions and the whaleshark season is in the Australian winter but apparently the windy conditions were extraordinary and there were far fewer whaleshark sitings than usual.
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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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