Monday, July 19, 2010

Adios Saipan Olomaway Yap

Leaf fish
Finally untied the docklines and sailed out of Saipan to Ulithi Atoll. Three days of downwind sailing saw Falalop Island on the horizon. Short visits were made ashore on Falalop and Fedderi Islands. The islanders still live a traditional lifestyle with a few modern amenities like DVD movies. An overnight sail took Sooke to Colonia, Yap Island. After a much needed haulout and new bottompaint completed at the Yap Fisheries Boat Yard, it was time to dive the waters of Yap. I made contact with Alex Raiman of Yap Divers. He is a twenty year veteran dive guide and knows the dive sites very well. High voltage shark action at Vertigo Wall keep the heart pumping. At times we had up to fifteen grey reef sharks approaching the divers.

The Giant Manta Rays were elusive on a number of dives but finally showed up at the Cleaning Station in Mill Channel. Sitting on the bottom at 75 feet for up to thirty to fourty minutes made the use of nitrox and the extended no-decompression times perfect for this dive site. These graceful creatures would approach us from all directions and make passes directly over top of the divers.

Giant Manta Ray Manta birostris


Grey Reef Sharks Carcharhinus amblyrhynchos

Soft Corals on South Reef Wall.

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