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Southwest Pinnacle and Hin Ngam on the 28th Sept.11

Todays dive report and photos are courtesy of Phill.

What a brilliant couple of dive sites to finish your Open Water Course on…Indeed what a brilliant couple of dive sites just to be on!

After having completed Cody’s Digital Underwater Photography specialty the day before, I was feeling inspired and totally up for getting our Panasonic Lumix wet in the housing of course.  I was also a little excited to be heading out to where the whale sharks have been seen.
I jumped in at South West Pinnacle  and was straight away scanning just below the surface for any signs.  Nothing yet, but the water was crystal clear and I could just about see the bottom, I knew it was going to be a great dive to shoot.  I thought it best to let Daniel and Chris, who were completing their Open Water course, concentrate. Southwest Pinnacle is one of the deeper dive sites in the area, and they needed to make sure they were staying above 18 metres.  They can save the rest of the dive site for their Advanced Course !  So I went to photograph the fun diving team who were all free descending close to the line in all sorts of poses.  They were definitely up for the dive.

Southwest is a fantastic site for fish.  Quite literally they are everywhere, and one of the most spectacular scenes on any of Koh Tao’s dive sites is to watch as they quite literally pulsate around the pinnacle in huge schools.  In fact as you swim around the main pinnacle you can’t help but become completely engulfed, a truly remarkable feeling.  We sighted 2 absolutely huge Groupers being cleaned and just before we started to make our ascent I decided it worthwhile to investigatete some of the old and very integrated fishing nets, lying near the bottom about 22 metres.  However Mr. Titan Triggerfish disapproved and I spent the next few minutes trying to get myself firmly out of his territory, sorry about that old chum.

Then it was on to Hin Ngam, a beautiful area of the Aow Leuk bay that not only provides a fantastic reef dive, and snorkel site, but also 3 small pinnacles in the sand around the mooring area.  These pinnacles are a macro spotters dream, and with the sand around you can comfortably perch and rest, get the torch (or the camera) out and admire.  Loads of Banded Boxer Shrimp, Dancing Durban Shrimps and many Cleaner Glass Shrimp lie in wait to meet you, and quite often you can bump into larger fish taking time out in this “car wash” type environment.  Such as the Giant Puffer that didn’t mind having a couple of snaps taken with the guys, Daniel and Chris, as they completed their Open Water Dive 4 of their course, the final dive.  You could see they had been paying attention in class as they expertly demonstrated some smooth Hovering and Navigational skills, natural water babies.

The sun shone for our cruise home and faces were beaming all around, everyone was looking forward to seeing the photographs when we got back.  I hope you enjoy the selection in this post too.


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