I missed the first two dives of the day (dives 8 and 9 of the trip) on account of feeling deathly ill. No idea what it was, but nearly everyone on the boat got it at some point. Also, this is one of the few sites I dived in 2009 and 2019. Sadly, I didn’t have an underwater camera back in 2009, though. Finally, I recall this site as being spectacular, but, with the exception of the picture in the banner, none of the images are particularly impressive. Maybe it was just a “bad camera dive.”
Dive site notes: 15:04-15:57 (53 min). Max. depth=23.5 m. 25.6ºC. 30% O2. I did this dive in 2009 and it was one of my favorite dives I’d ever done. 10-m viz. Nice Acropora-dominated community from 8 m down to 20 m (ending at sand apron with garden eels). Some coral bommies at 21 m. Darkly pigmented Pocillopora acuta @ 22 m (not integrated into reef matrix). Small massive poritids, Tubastrea, high diversity of mostly small Acropora, Pachyseris, Seriatopora caliendrum/ Stylophora pistillata, monster snapper, Pocillopora verrucosa. At 15 m, reached scoured area dominated by fire coral and small acroporids. Some fairly large table Acropora. Pocillopora eydouxi=rare. Large barrel sponges. Encountered area with no coral, only CCA-encrusted rubble. Amazing Acropora spp. assemblage during and after going through the “shotgun” swim-through. Also Isopora and plentiful soft corals. Large nurse shark in the distance (first of trip). Fungia, nudibranchs, large areas dominated by gorgeous soft coral carpets. Small Pavona colonies. Montipora, amongst the most impressive Acropora of the trip-abundant and diverse. Very strong currents/thermoclines. Saw ghost pipefish at very end of dive (ornate).