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Anilao 2019 – diving day #5

Another day begins, cockerels signalling that we really should be getting up, I’m sure I heard locals playing basketball outside at 04.30 this morning.It looks like another excellent day is greeting us, flat seas, and little wind.Darrell, Diane, Graham and Sue leave today for Australia so there will be ‘fresh meat’ on the boat today, hopefully they can cope with us.We’ve dived lots of sites but still have lots of sites to dive, the range of diving here is excellent, lots of ‘muck diving’, apparently Anilao is the Muck Diving Capital of the Philippines, as well as all manner of reefs, some with amazing underwater typography such as Kirby’s Rock, Arthur’s Rock, Twin Rocks and Red Rock. I think that if it’s got Rock in the name then there’s going to be some sprctacular underwater scenery.

There’s even a wreck, albeit the wreck of a once floating casino. From the ironwork that’s left I suspect this would have looked like a large floating box of some kind.

Dive 17 Red Rock.
A massive pinnacle that starts at about 5m below the surface and goes down to around 25m. The pinnacle of surrounded by a rubble area full of nudis and shrimps. There are amazing rock formations, all covered with every colour of featherstar known (and some unknown).A large turtle was also seen wandering around the area.Another 80 minute dive, excellent.One slight drama in as much as Jo had a failure on one of her strobes, thankfully this was later tracked down to a hitherto untried ordering of the batteries. This will not be repeated and the traditional approach of doing it the right way remains the method of choice for future dives.Back on board, Wendel (our captain) was catching up on sleep during our surface interval.

Dive 18, a Muck Dive called Gasang near to Red Rock, we drop in on a sandy slope and, as usual, nothing seems to present itself as photographic opportunity for a minute or two, then it starts! In no particular order: Tiger Shrimp, Coleman Shrimp, Seahorse, Grouper, Mantis Shrimp, Cockatoo fish, Moray eels, monster Nudis’s amongst several others. Another epic dive.Today, the boat was ours and ours alone which was nice though we missed having the others on board, the lively banter, and the sweets!

Back to base for a swift lunch and to say goodbye to our antipodean friends as they fly tonight. We will catch up with them soon however on our Bali adventure.Jo and I jump on board for first afternoon dive.

Dive 19 Manit Point.It is difficult to put in to words just hour much colour there is here, a spectacular rocky outcrop on the tip of a point. Absolutely smothered in life of all kinds and so very much colour.Nudis galore and all other critters including a ‘lobster’. A 90+ minute dive in technicolour overload, amazing.We head back to base for a swift got drink before returning to sea for the last dive of the day.

Dive 20, Near Twin Rocks.A most excellent reef bimble as the sun sets, lots of coral outcrops and places to explore.Peacock Mantis Shrimps with eggs seem to be very popular right now! Along with plenty of Nudi and shrimp action. Another most excellent dive.Back on shore, dinner consists of Sisig, which is finely chopped and fried pork (plenty of crackling in there) with chilli, chop suey, fried rice and deep fried Lumpia. The food here is absolutely lovely. We must try to order less.