Wednesday, November 30, 2011

The Liberty, Tulamben, Bali, Indonesia

The Liberty, Tulamben, Bali, Indonesia


A long wished dive came along today, diving 'The Liberty' at Tulamben in Bali, Indonesia.

Visibility was great today, between 15 and 20 meters and no current during the two dives, excellent conditions.

How the wreck looks like today

There's plenty of growth on the wreck and plenty of macro and big fish life is to be found. Unfortunately my Canon underwater housing didn't work properly, again. From that point of view it was a frustrating dive.

The Liberty before she was torpedoed

Having stayed at Candi Dasa, the drive over to Tulamben was just around 45 minutes and we arrived very early and had the wreck during the first dive almost to ourselves, which was very enjoyable. It's low season so it wasn't that busy anyway, but in high season, up to 200 divers per day can dive here.

Nembrotha kubaryana

A couple of nudibranches I saw were firsts, like the one above, the nembrotha kubaryana but for some that I spotted my camera didn't work.

The beach entry, big and small black pebbles

We also spotted a bump-head parrot fish, a solitary giant barracuda and plenty of small critters and reef fish and the biggest school of jacks I've ever seen so far, at around 5 meters and you could swim into them and they would completely emerge you.

Another Nembrotha kubaryana

Eel garden

Jacks

Wreck scenes

View on the wreck

If you find yourself on Bali, make sure to visit the Liberty, its well worth your time and effort!

Camille

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

More diving around Gili Air in Indonesia

More diving around Gili Air in Indonesia

A couple of more dives around Gili Air have been tucked under my belt during the last days here. The obligatory trip to Shark Point saw a pod of bottle nosed dolphins on the way over to Gili Trawangan, spotted from the boat and a couple of white tip reef sharks were spotted underwater.

Ornate Ghost Pipe fish

During another dive on the fantastic house reef of PADI 5* IDC Center Oceans 5 on Gili Air, great for macro, we spotted 5 ornate ghost pipe fish, here's just a small outtake of the pictures I took!

Yellow ornate ghost pipe fish

Ornate ghost pipe fish

Mantis shrimp

Chromodoris Geometrica

The diving around Gili Air is really nice and I very much enjoy the macro available here. I can't wait to get back in February next year and dive some more!

Camille

PADI IDC for November 2011 on Gili Air in Indonesia has been completed

PADI IDC for November 2011 on Gili Air in Indonesia has been completed

Yesterday was the last day of that November 2011 IDC on Gili Air in Indonesia. It was already the 4th PADI IDC that I conducted on Gili Air in conjunction with PADI 5* IDC Center Oceans 5.

Pablo, myself and Hans

Hans is going to attend the PADI IE on Bali, starting this coming 2nd December and Pablo is going to wait until he's back in Australia and he's planning to attend the January 2012 IE in Sydney. Good luck to both you!

If you're interested in becoming a PADI scuba instructor, this year I will teach one more IDC in Khao Lak - Thailand, starting 5th December, followed by an IDC on Koh Samui - Thailand, starting 8th January 2012, an IDC in South Korea starting 23rd January, Koh Phangan - Thailand is due again to start 10th February and the 23rd February sees me back again on Gili Air in Indonesia! Don't miss out on all this action, send me an email with the dates or location that you're interested in and I will send you some information accordingly.

Camille

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Diving around Gili Air in Indonesia

Diving around Gili Air in Indonesia


During the recent or rather at this moment still current IDC on Gili Air, I've taken the opportunity to go diving at a few occasions. There's a lovely harbor with a nice reef, smack in front of the Oceans 5 dive center which is great for macro shots, as the pictures below will testify.

Besides the shots shown here, among others I also saw a white tip reef shark at Sunset - Gili Trawangan and mandarin fish at Oceans 5 House reef on Gili Air, but don't have any pictures of these. More dives are still to come and I'm planning to dive 'the Liberty wreck' on Bali on 30th November. Updates to follow!

Diving around the Gili's is worth your time, it's time to come and have a look yourselves!

Hope you enjoy the pictures, Camille

Chromodoris Kuniei at Soraya, Gili Meno


Octopus at Sunset, Gili Trawangan


Ringed pipefish at Oceans 5 house reef, Gili Air


Mantis shrimp at Oceans 5 house reef, Gili Air


Juvenile cuttlefish at Oceans 5 house reef, Gili Air


Juvenile broad banded pipefish at Oceans 5 house reef, Gili Air


Juvenile ornate ghost pipefish at Oceans 5 house reef, Gili Air


Double ended pipefish, with eggs (male) at Oceans 5 house reef, Gili Air


Yellow banded pipefish at Hans Reef, Gili Air


Giant Murray eel at Hans Reef, Gili Air

Friday, November 25, 2011

Turtle Conservation Project Gili Air in Indonesia with Oceans 5 follow up

Turtle Conservation Project Gili Air in Indonesia with Oceans 5 follow up

As a follow up to the original story about the Turtle Conservation Project Gili Air in Indonesia with Oceans 5, almost three months ago, it's time for this story or rather follow up.

One of the growing, young turtles

From the 88 turtles that survived the ordeal before being looked after at Oceans 5 dive center, there are now 80 left alive. In general they're doing very well and eating each day like there's no tomorrow!

One of the three basins used for the conversation project

They tend to gang up on their weaker family members by nibbling on their front flippers which in the long run would hurt them and kill them. Some of them will therefor be isolated for periods of time, until their flippers are healed again.

The house that holds the three basins

Things are looking good and during my next visit, scheduled for late February next year, I will provide a next update.

Camille

Thursday, November 24, 2011

PADI IDC for November 2011 on Gili Air in Indonesia is just passed the halfway mark

PADI IDC for November 2011 on Gili Air is just passed the halfway mark

That's right, in this PADI IDC we've got only 4 days left to go and we already have 5 days behind us. Hans and Pablo are enjoying the 2nd coming of the Theory exams right now, the set of exams they have to pass with at least 75%. Later today the first Open Water presentations are scheduled.

Pablo during one of his Knowledge Development presentations

We're nicely on schedule and especially with such a small group, where they enjoy plenty of personal attention, it's also nice to make good time each day. The IDC is moving along in a relaxed pace.

Hans during one of his Knowledge presentations

Plenty of training, experience an fun has already been had and experienced by Hans and Pablo. Classroom presentations by them and me were plentiful on the schedule and everyday we got wet in the pool so far. The weather conditions on Gili Air during this IDC have been great so far, by the way.

Air depletion drill during the skill circuit

Stay tuned for more updates on this IDC on Gili Air. We've also done some house reef dives, straight after we got out of the pool on a couple of days and some pictures are due soon. Great macro life here!

If you're interested in participating in an IDC with me on Gili Air or any of the other locations where I conduct PADI IDC's, check my schedule or get in touch with me and I will send you some information regarding the program. Hope to see you soon.

Camille

Sunday, November 20, 2011

PADI IDC on Gili Air, Indonesia for November 2011 kicked off

PADI IDC on Gili Air, Indonesia for November 2011 kicked off

Yesterday saw the start of the last PADI IDC of this year on Gili Air in Indonesia in conjunction with Oceans 5. Next year another 4 PADI IDC's are scheduled on Gili Air again, see you there in 2012!

Hans and Pablo during their theory exams

Originally we had 4 candidates but 2 jumped ship due to various reasons, just 4 days before the start of this course. Hans from the Netherlands and Pablo from Australia are attending though and so far it has been good in the classroom and in the pool.

Buddy check before the start of a skill circuit

It's good to be back on Gili Air again and enjoy the relaxed and laid back atmosphere on this small island. There are excellent weather conditions.

Deep water entry with a giant stride

The PADI IE for Hans will starting be 2nd December on Bali whilst Pablo is aiming for an IE in Australia later this year or early next year. Hans lives in Bali which makes it easy for him to attend.

PADI skill circuit, the alternate air source skill

Christophe who staffed the recent IDC on Koh Samui should have been staffing this IDC again but he got bitten by a mosquito whilst holidaying on Bali in-between the two IDC programs and is now in a hospital on Lombok. Good luck to you Christophe and hope you recover soon!

Rescue exercise #7, unconscious diver at the surface

If you're interested in participating in one of my PADI IDC's, the last program of this year will start 5th December in Khao Lak, Thailand or have a look at my current schedule.

Camille

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

PADI Oxygen Provider Instructors on Koh Samui, November 2011

PADI Oxygen Provider Instructors on Koh Samui, November 2011

Today Chris and Callan out of the Koh Samui IDC class of November 2011, completed their Instructor level Emergency Oxygen provider course.

From left to right, Callan, myself and Chris

As usual, the course took place in the classroom of the local hyperbaric chamber in Bang Rak.

Taking a closer look at the Oxygen equipment

Chris, Callan and Ricky (manager of the hyperbaric chamber)

After the course they got a free tour of the hyperbaric chamber, thus perfecting the the theme of the day! All in all a good day, hope to see you soon on the speedboat to Sail Rock!

Camille

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

PADI IE on Koh Samui, Thailand November 2011 a 100% success

PADI IE on Koh Samui, Thailand November 2011 a 100% success

Today the PADI IE on Koh Samui was completed and after a long, hard working day yesterday, my 5 candidates completed their open water dive at Chaweng Beach with good scores and now they're all the newest PADI instructors on the block!

From left to right; Camille (PADI Course Director), Callan (OWSI), Nobu (MI), Miwako (OWSI) Hideki (OWSI), Jose (OWSI), Chris (OWSI), Paul (MI) and George (PADI Examiner)
Christophe, Imad, Aiko and Ami also staffed but are for various reasons not in the picture

If you're interested in participating in one of my PADI IDC's, get in touch with me and see and hear what I can offer you. The next IDC starts 17th November on Gili Air in Indonesia and the last IDC scheduled this year will start 5th December in Khao Lak, Thailand.

For next year 21 IDC's are scheduled in Koh Samui, Koh Phangan, Koh Lanta and Khao Lak in Thailand, Malapascua and Dauin/Dumaguete in the Philippines, Gili Air in Indonesia and in Osan, South Korea. Plenty of dates and locations to choose from! Looking forward seeing you there soon!

Camille

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Diving the Hardeep wreck near Pattaya

Diving the Hardeep wreck near Pattaya

You actually take a car or minibus to Samae San and from there the boats leave for the Hardeep or Suddhahib. It's been a while since I dived last here, that was during May/June last year.
It was good to be back again!

Imad and his brother during the descent

Conditions were nice, no current and relatively good visibility. Interestingly enough, the descent line had been moved bu boats using it as an anchor line. Quite amazing really if you look at the size and amount of weights attached to the descent line, so this can actually prevented!

A part of the hull of the Hardeep

Thailand has a few wrecks to show for and wreck diving is one of my favorite diving activities, together with taking pictures.

Ropes to hold on to at the end of your dive, during your safety stop, 5 meters below the surface

The four of us enjoyed out time underwater and for the other three, Imad, Assem and Bassan it was their first dive on the Hardeep.

Marble ray at around 18 meters

For the second dive we went to Hin Shalaam or Shark Rock and again we had nice conditions, a mild current and good visibility. Towards the end of the dive, we spotted a big Marbled ray, on the picture above.

Ordnance at the dive site, don't touch it!

This site was once used as a target for shooting practice for the Thai Navy. I spotted dozens of shells, ranging from big single bullets to long rockets and grenade shells in all sizes. The pictured above looked the most menacing, nothing to mess around with, you better not touch it, the ordnance may still be alive.

Looking forward to another dive trip in Pattaya waters in the near future, I hope!

Camille

Thursday, November 3, 2011

PADI IDC on Koh Samui for October-November 2011 is sealed and delivered

PADI IDC on Koh Samui for October-November 2011 is sealed and delivered

Today we completed the last bits and pieces and we have a nice 4 day gap in-between the start of the PADI IE 8th November. Paul will complete the EFR Instructor course with them during the these 4 days whilst I will be in Pattaya doing some wreck diving on the Hardeep.

Confined water class with 5 Staff instructors working hard in the background

It was a fun course and very international with candidates from the UK, Chile, Australia and Japan and staff from Japan, the UK, France and Lebanon.

During Open Water

They learned a lot and are now ready to tackle the PADI IE and become good instructors afterwards. We prepared them well enough!

Knowledge development for Chris

Chris and Callan are set to start jobs with Paul at 'The Dive Academy' straight after the IE, it helps that they have long term plans staying on Samui!

Imad, Ami and Aiko grading confined water presentations

Stay tuned for more updates on this IDC and if you're interested in participating in one of my PADI IDC's, the 2012 schedule is now available but the next two IDC's will still be conducted during the remainder of this year! Gili Air in Indonesia will have an IDC starting 19th November and the very last IDC of this year will be conducted in Khao Lak, Thailand, starting 5th December.
The first IDC in 2012 will kick off on Koh Samui in Thailand 8th January 2012.

Hope to see you soon in one of my programs!

Camille