Dive, dive, dive

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Pandanus Campsite

Flag of Australia  , Queensland,
Monday, October 11, 2010

Lin can manage to walk on her right tiptoes so we have decided to go ahead our visit to the outer reef aboard Calypso, although we did make enquiries about a medical centre and were pleased to hear there is one locally in Port Douglas.

We were picked off at 08:25 and whisked off down to the harbour. Wow, there are some big boats down there, especially twin hull jobbies, including several associated with the brand Quicksilver. We were told that the owner (Japanese?) lives in Port Douglas with a nice house on the headland. Calypso is also a nice multihull, with capacity for nearly 100 snorkellers and divers, although thankfully nothing like that many are aboard today. In fact, we have only 5 qualifies divers aboard, which means a small group for Roland, who will buddy up with the Dive Leader.

Anchors away, and it was 90 minutes at full speed – around 20 knots – out to Opal Reef, NE of Douglas. There is quite a swell as soon as we are out of harbour, so many are watching the horizon and out in the fresh air, including Roland.

We snorkel/dive Split Reef first, followed by Blue Buoy, both in the south of Opal Reef. Beautiful coral, and good visibility. All dives are not deep – less than 20 metres – which allows Roland to fit in 3 dives. Free fruit, tea, coffee, biscuits and carrot cake for morning coffee. Lin manages the snorkelling without any problem, but wears one flipper which means she goes round in a circle.

After a good buffet lunch, we motor to the north end of the reef, to the SNO dive site – stands for something like "slight north of Opal". The weather meanwhile has turned from sunshine to fairly heavy rain but it matters not, I guess, when you are underneath. The third dive was also good, but slightly cloudy. By this time, we are both getting a touch tired and cold.

Time for home and another 90 minute ride through a fair old swell. Roland spends most of the time talking to an ex Brit who lives in Wellington, NZ. Lin talks to an ex Brit who lives in Sydney. This place, and NZ, is full of ex Brits. IS there anyone left in the UK?

We have come home with possibly an excellent photo of Ro underwater but as it's on a CD, and we do not have a CD reader, we cannot see it until December. Yah boo.

We then popped to the medical centre suspecting the worst (people had suggested that the tendons could be a problem). Lin saw a doctor within 30 mins and great news- she was advised that it was just badly bruised. Being in water part of the day had also help keep it cool. It seems it’s just a matter of resting for the week, cooling with ice for 24 hours, and a few ibuprofen. Huge sigh of relief that it’s nothing worse. Must admit the whole medical process was very efficient and smooth.

So Roland’s cooking tea tonight (but he usually does the barbie anyway) and we will probably move south tomorrow.
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Chris on

Good news about the foot mum! Imagine that is rather reassuring. Also, seen the photos from the boat and dives, all look excellent. Glad it was an enjoyable trip out there! Certainly an interesting floating pontoon with slide, any chance you went down it? X

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