Archive for November, 2006

USS Saratoga Diving Bikini Atoll

Friday 17 November 2006 @ 4:36 pm


USS Saratoga

USS Saratoga

The USS Saratoga is the largest diveable shipwreck in the world, and the only available aircraft carrier. The ship measures 880 feet long. (3 buoys: bow, stern and bridge).



Bikini Atoll is located in the centre of the Pacific and is one of the 29 atolls and 5 single islands that form the Republic of the Marshall Islands. Bikini Atoll is best known for its role in a series of nuclear tests conducted by the US in the 1940s and 1950s.
USS Saratoga was finished in 1927, an American aircraft carrier 880 feet in length, with displacement 39,000 tons. She rests in Bikini’s lagoon at a depth of 190 feet. The bridge is easily accessible at 40 feet, her deck at 90 feet, and the hanger for the Helldivers at 125 feet. These Helldivers and bombs are still on display complete with all dials and controls. Saratoga had a fuel capacity of 63,200 barrels of fuel oil, 249 barrels of diesel oil, and 132,264 gallons of gasoline. Fuel and ammunition loads during test BAKER were 10% of capacity and 67% capacity respectively. She was reported sunk by the Japanese seven times during World War II. She received seven battle stars.

Bikini Atoll

Bikini Atoll

View the BBC filmstrip: The Atomic Wrecks

Champagne Pools Dominica Snorkel Diving

Friday 10 November 2006 @ 12:28 pm

Champange pools dominicaSomewhere not far north of Soufriere lies a fascinating area for snorkel divers.

In this geothermal region if you swim out to the correct spot about 20 yards offshore you can find the Champagne pools. Here bubbles are streaming up from the sea bed. If you swim down to 3m depth yo uwill find the shimmy from hot water vents between the rock. This is an absolutely amazing dive. It can be tricky to find, but any of the dive operators in Soufriere should be able to give you directions.

Check out this footage, but I must point out that the bubbles were a lot more active when I last visited:

Anse Chastanet Diving St Lucia

Wednesday 8 November 2006 @ 1:36 pm

Anse Chastanet Resort, a babe resort and home to SCUBA ST LUCIA – just steps from the water. Perfectly set up for both beach and boat dives, Scuba St. Lucia offers guests gear storage; a well equipped scuba store; three compressors; rental dive gear and an underwater Photo and Video center.Anse Chastanet diving st Lucia

Just 10 meters beyond the water’s edge, the reef’s remarkable ecosystem offers an amazing profusion of unusual tropical marine life, in 20 to 140 feet of calm, clear water.

Anse Chastanet Reef makes for an amazing dive day or night. Just 10 yards beyond the waters edge, the reefs remarkable ecosystem offers an amazing profusion of unusual tropical marine life in 20’ to 140’ of calm clear water. In the shallow areas be sure to keep your eyes open for peacock flounders, octopus, needle fish and turtles. Or drop down a little deeper over dense coral growth to see puffers, moray eels, parrot fish, lobsters and even sea horses. A unique dive site for all abilities and especially good for macro photography.

Thistlegorm Wreck Dive

Wednesday 8 November 2006 @ 1:31 pm

Thistlegorm: Battleship, Red sea – Depth 18 – 30mThistlegorm wreck dive

An amazing dive, which has been voted one of the Top Ten Dives in the World.

You’ll need to do this one more than once to explore more than a tiny part of the wreck.

Thistlegorm is Gaelic for Blue Thistle. A British vessel, it was attacked from the air and sunk in 1941 whilst carrying a cargo of war supplies: rifles, motor bikes, train carriages, trucks. A big wreck – 131 metres long. Currents can be strong, and in different directions at the surface and at the wreck.

Check out the following underwater footage of the deck of the Thistlegorm

Thistlegorm <<See the Thistlegorm on its launch day

Diving Yongala Wreck

Wednesday 8 November 2006 @ 1:17 pm

In 1911, in Queensland Australia, the Yongala sank during a treacherous cyclone, killing 122 people, a racehorse called Moonshine and a red Lincolnshire bull. She had no telegraph facilities and so could not be warned of the weather ahead. In 1981 the Yongala was given official protection under the Historic Shipwrecks Act. The ship is 90 km southeast of Townsville, 10 km away form Cape Bowling Green. She is arguably the best dive in the world.Yongala wreck diving

109 meters long, the bow points north and the ship lists to starboard.

The vessel was named after a small town in South Australia. In the local Aboriginal language, ‘Yongala’ (originally pronounced Yonggluh) meant ‘broad water’, or ‘broad wide watering place’. It was launched on the 29 April 1903, and left Southampton on 9th October. Carrying passengers bound for Australia, it arrived in Sydney on 6 December 1903. More information is at

You see manta rays, sea snakes, octopuses, turtles, bull sharks, tiger sharks, clouds of fish and spectacular coral. You are forbidden from entering the ship: one diver was recently arrested and fined for doing so.

Check out footage of the beautiful marine life there:

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