I have always bene drawn to the water and watersports. As a school aged child I did well at swimming and remember school holidays snorkeling with friends. I had one of those old snorkels with a ping pong ball in a cage to stop water getting in. After swimming and a little bit of water polo at school and canoeing in scouts it was almost natural that when I had the opportunity I would try scuba-diving.
My first ever dive was in 1976 at Rottnest Island in Western Australia. Myself and another NAVY recruit ventured across to the island and hired dive gear. Regulations at that time were very lax or totally non-existent so it was easy to hire everything we needed and go diving by ourselves with no experience at all. I do remember the thrill of staying underwater and having fish swimming right beside you. The only safety we used was don’t come up faster than your bubbles.
When the time came I qualified as ‘cuff rate’ diver in the NAVY. This just meant there was a team of divers to assist the more experience Clearance Divers assigned to each warship. This did give me the chance to dive in a work type situation doing hull maintenance, searches for lost items and for hull sweeps looking for mines. As a NAVY diver we dived in any conditions and in all port locations. Sometimes in such horrid water that it was only possible to see your nose because it was in your mask.
But, when on deployments there were opportunities to get some wonderful diving at ideal locations. When visiting Pacific Islands there were often ex-pats’ who dive shops and called on the ship and invited the dive team to go with them. Or the dive team would take one of the ship’s boats and go dive to keep up qualifying dive time up.
After the NAVY diving took a back seat for a while but being attracted to the water it didn’t take too long to continue. My two sons always wanted to know what where I went and what I saw so I started to take photos and then some videos.
Here’s a link to my YouTube channel which has a few dives on it and more recently some sailing.
In December 2018 we ventured to Lady Elliott Island for a week of diving. Having lived in Bundaberg for almost 18 years I had never been over before. Being so far off the coast the only access is to fly in so day visits to dive are not possible.
The weather, diving and eco-resort certainly didn’t disappoint.