MV Hallelujah Similans Liveaboard Trip #118 | 20-24th Jan 2018 | Big Blue Diving

Similans Liveaboard – The only way to see the best on offer

On this trip we received guests from around the world namely, Great Britain, America, Canada, Japan & Germany but not a full boat. Albeit 17 guests sounds a reasonable number, on MV Hallelujah we can cater for 25 so the boat felt even more enormous than she usually does. This was great for trip leader Matt as he does love his food! Continue Reading…

Richelieu Dive Site

MV Hallelujah Similans Trip | 8-12 Jan 2018 | Dive Decisions

The Start of a New Year

Following the Turkey stuffing butties and New Years celebrations it very quickly became apparent that not everyone had stopped enjoying their vacation period. As we settled alongside island 4 of the Similans under the night sky ‘flexibility’ was the word that sprang to mind when we viewed many liveaboard boats set to dive the following day. Continue Reading…

Underwater Adventure

MV Hallelujah Trip #13 24 – 28 Dec 2017 | Adventure Deep

As scuba divers we are constantly learning; the sport itself is an activity that invokes further education from the very fact that no one dive is the same as the next. During the trip a number of our guests decided to enhance their knowledge and partake in further education. Some of the regular course requests we receive are Adventure Deep dives, Adventure Night Dives, Advanced Open Water & Enriched Air Nitrox. Lets take a closer look… Continue Reading…

Whaleshark Smile

MV Hallelujah Similan Liveaboard 19-23 Dec 2017 | Whaleshark

Whaleshark, the largest fish in the world but what do you do when a Whaleshark appears on the dive site and just wants to play like a 6 month old puppy…..

Whaleshark Cobia

Day 1 of our trip and we start out with some easy diving at Hideaway Bay followed by West of Eden, 2 great dives before hitting the more adventurous Elephant Head Rock after lunch.

As usual the briefings comprise of the dive site, what we are likely to see and of course the swim through’s which are always good fun. Personally, I always cover a short advisory brief with regards to Pelagic sightings at Elephant Head Rock and beyond just in case something unexpected rocks up but I had also been told of Frog fish sightings by another member of staff from the previous trip. relaying this information to my guests we decide to get our macro eyes in focus and see if we can find them too.

We head to the dive deck, don our gear, the captain puts on his skillful handbrake turn and sounds the air horn, time to dive!

Descending along the gradual slope of the main rock we scour the 2 main cracks for aforementioned little beasties; ignoring the Boxfish, Gobies, various damsels and the odd Trigger Fish we painstakingly cover a significant amount of area. To our dismay the Frogfish where clearly not home so we continued to descend and head through the main valley towards the deeper swim-through. Just as we pass the exit of the valley the water becomes alive with the audio from tank bangers and rattles, instinctively we scour to see what all the fuss is about and low and behold the Whaleshark silhouette is heading our way some 10m shallower ready to blot out the shards of sun.

She passes over us and disappears off into the distance behind further rock formations and I quickly whip round and ask my guests if they want to continue or wait. We wait for a further ten minutes and then decide its time to move on. As we had already been submerged for sometime we completed the first swim-through and headed up and over the next rock formation, still with one eye to the sky and the other looking into the blue. She’s back and by this time a number of other dive groups had arrived in the same location.

Whaleshark Remora Cobia

Bubbles everywhere, fins flapping speedily with cameras held high trying to capture the moment it all became a little frantic. Having dived with many Whaleshark before, I did start to consider that the commotion may actually be stressing her out; this feeling soon subsided as it became very noticeable that we had indeed met a 6m+ underwater puppy! All she wanted to do was play. Nudging divers, chasing divers, I don’t think Instructor kayo has ever been mistaken for a sardine before (albeit she is tiny) but she almost became fish food. She stayed until we could stay no more. Even as we broke the surface our boat boys could still see her around us.

Everyone on the boat was elated, the atmosphere was electric with a number of divers having their first ever dive with a Whaleshark, particularly one guest who has over 2000 dives and works in the dive industry; Alan, you can tick that box now as can Kurt, a nice little bonus on top of logging his 100th dive during the trip.

A huge thanks goes out to Mr Sakaizumi & Mr Yumoto for the photographs (which have been registered on whaleshark.org for research analysis).

A short clip of the action can be viewed on our YouTube Channel

We only had one problem now; It’s only Day 1, how on earth do we top that!?!?

 

 

新年明けましておめでとうございます!

新年明けましておめでとうございます。

2018年も魚たちがどんな姿を見せてくれるか楽しみです。

遅まきながら、昨年のダイビングを振り返りたいと思います。

中でも印象に残ったのはやはりジンベエザメ。私にとって初めてのジンベエザメで、実に優雅な姿でした。遠巻きにうっとりとみていたら、こちらの方に口を開けて近づいてくるではありませんか。そのうち適当なところで避けてくれるだろうと思ったら大間違い。ダイバーの泡をプランクトンだと勘違いするようで、そのままこちらに突入。しばしの間口を大きく開けたジンベエザメから逃げ惑う羽目に。。。

ジンベエを

みたら保とう

いい距離を

そしてロウニンアジ、カスミアジ、キツネフエフキ、ツムブリの群れ。彼らが一緒に群れているのを見られるのは、もしかするとここだけかもしれません。ものすごい数で群れています。

こちらはハレルヤのお客さん、FabioとVittoriaから頂いたビデオです。

Grace Fabio e Vittoria!

 

Coucher de soleil sous-marin – Koh Tachai Pinnacle

Nous sommes à Koh Tachai Pinnacle, sec en forme de dôme au large de l’île du même nom, située au nord des îles Similan, à mi-chemin avec l’archipel des Surin.

Un saut droit non loin du mouillage, et c’est une plongée de coucher de soleil, entre chien et loup, qui s’engage.

Le site est souvent imprévisible, surtout lors des changements de marée. Mais le courant, accentué par la forme convexe de ce gros dôme granitique, semble plutôt raisonnable cette fois-ci.

Quelques palanquées descendent au mouillage, se hissant mètre par mètre le long du bout, alors que d’autres, en chute libre à proximité, corrigent régulièrement leur dérive par quelques coups de palmes.

Les premiers bancs de fusiliers nous accueillent, s’écoulant autour des blocs rocheux et des plongeurs. Plus stationnaires et épais, les nuages de petits poissons, ainsi que les premières carangues, font bientôt leur apparition – des dizaines de carangues bleues et quelques carangues à grosses têtes, mais aussi d’autres poissons argentés comme les coureurs arc-en-ciel et maquereaux espagnols.

Nous levons la tête au passage de trois thons à dents-de-chien qui patrouillent les abords du site en serpentant tranquillement…
Bien bien, il y a du monde au rendez-vous.

15 mètres de fond, nous virons à l’est entre deux gros blocs rocheurs et continuons la descente.

Ça chasse de partout maintenant. Surtout les petites carangues, qui nagent frénétiquement autour de nous.
Quelques plongeurs ont allumé leurs torches – la lumière souligne les proies, nuages poissonneux occupés à gober du plancton, que viennent percer les prédateurs dans un affolement de courte durée.

Arrivées à plus de 20 mètres, nous palmons un temps contre le courant, avançant doucement, avec de longues pauses dans des zones protégées, où nous profitons, au calme, du spectacle qui s’offre à nous.
Les barracudas ne sont malheureusement pas au rendez-vous, le banc, plus petit que d’habitude, s’est apparemment retiré vers le sud de site où quelques palanquées les ont croisés furtivement…

Nous avançons. La lumière baisse encore, et le rythme de la chasse s’accélère.
Quelques cris d’excitation fusent dans les détendeurs. Oh la belle bleue !

Nous longeons l’est du site jusqu’à ce qu’apparaissent, au nord, un beau jardin de gorgones et de coraux mous. Mais c’est bien au-dessus de nos têtes que tout se passe aujourd’hui, et nous ne nous attardons pas.

Nous coupons court et remontons sur le dôme, dérivant un peu le long de sa surface lisse aux taches blanches et rosâtres.
Le courant y est plus fort, et nous finissons la plongée accrochés en ligne en haut d’un bloc rocheux à 11 mètres. La lumière de nos torches illuminent les écailles argentées qui viennent fondre sur leurs proies colorées. Immobiles, seules les têtes des plongeurs suivent l’action dans un sillon de bulles.

50 minutes, nous décollons pour une dérive dans le bleu et le palier de principe, les lampes pointées vers le parachute.
Nous faisons surface sur une mer noire et un ciel sombre, flambées de rose et de rouge à l’ouest de l’horizon.
Premier mots entendus : « That was amazing ! » – Indeed…
Les zodiacs arrivent dans un vrombissement familier – merci Tachai, et à demain matin pour la suite !

 

Plongée sunset dive à bord du MV Hallelujah – Koh Tachai Pinnacle, 26/12/2017

Thorny Seahorse at Richelieu Rock

MV Hallelujah Similan Liveaboard 7 Dec – 11 Dec 2017

One of the many reasons I love my job is having the opportunity to host such a variety of people from across the globe, socialising in-between dives and over dinner creates a great atmosphere so I was elated when I saw the guest list of our latest trip…. Continue Reading…