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UPCOMING TRIPS

Out of the BLUE!!!!!

Destination: Bligh Waters, Wakaya, Makogai, Namena Marine Reserve & Vatu-I-Ra
Trip Date: Jun 26th - Jul 3rd, 2010 - Comments
Author: Sam Campbell
Welcome Back: Javier, Jim & Maureen M, Fred & Earleen Z. & John S.
Congratulations: to Nick becoming a Nitrox diver!!

This trip could be remembered for many reasons: the all-round great diving, the incredibly lively & fun atmosphere or the first Fiji trip back aboard the good ship NAI'A, but, no, it will be remembered for a chance 30-second encounter with the largest smile on the planet, a WHALE SHARK !!!!!!!!!.

Screams of delight were still reverberating half an hour after the group had surfaced. Nic, originally from France and residing in Australia, had been quite reserved until then. His screams of delight once he surfaced scared Koroi (Nai’a skiff driver) so much he thought Nic was being eaten by a sea monster.

We had our chance encounter on North Save-a-tack Passage in the Namena Marine Reserve.  The morning dive had been right at the end of the incoming tide and there was good fish life, so we decided to dive there again for the afternoon dive. We struck gold!

Patient turtle strikes a pose for Bailey

Patient turtle strikes a pose for Bailey

Jim & Bailey encounter a large moray on a dusk dive.

Jim & Bailey encounter a large moray on a dusk dive.

Octopus changing texture & colour. Captured by Bailey

Octopus changing texture & colour. Captured by Bailey

Scorpion leaf fish hiding on the reef. Taken by Bailey

Scorpion leaf fish hiding on the reef. Taken by Bailey

Beautifull soft coral. Captured by Jim

Beautifull soft coral. Captured by Jim

Crinoid feeding. Taken by Bailey

Crinoid feeding. Taken by Bailey

Flat worm wiggling around. Captured by Jim

Flat worm wiggling around. Captured by Jim

Hiding out in the whip coaral. taken by Fred

Hiding out in the whip coaral. taken by Fred

Fire dart fish, taken by Fred

Fire dart fish, taken by Fred

Scorpion leaf fish on Mellow Yellow captured by Fred

Scorpion leaf fish on Mellow Yellow captured by Fred

Arc Eye Hawk fish poses for Fred

Arc Eye Hawk fish poses for Fred

Anthias are hard to photograph. Nice shot by Fred

Anthias are hard to photograph. Nice shot by Fred

Hawk fish cleaning up scraps, taken by Fred

Hawk fish cleaning up scraps, taken by Fred

taken by Fred

taken by Fred

Minic file fish, taken by Fred

Minic file fish, taken by Fred

Some opted to relax and dive Kansas. They had a great dive and found at least 12 pygmy seahorses. The group that went back to the wall were looking for big stuff, they were not disappointed. A huge school of jacks was hanging on the drop off and as we approached they started to spread and OUT OF THE BLUE the whale shark appeared. I did a double take and finally recognized what we were all witnessing. Fortunately I had my camera and have posted the whale shark footage on YouTube, minus the original sound track "Oh F%[email protected] it's huge, OMG it's a whale shark!"

The 40ft leviathan cruised past the whole group slowly and checked us out. One tail stroke and we were left in its wake. A brief encounter can bring so much excitement. Tom, Jason and Bailey were dancing and celebrating underwater. Nic was ecstatic, but there was more to come. Obviously after such an encounter we were all looking in the blue for a repeat performance when 20 or so hammerheads cruised in to greet us.

The dive was a 10 out of 10. This sort of encounter is what divers’ dreams are made of: totally out of the blue appears a rare and magical creature.

Our Guests...

Earleen
Earleen
Eric
Eric
Nick
Nick
Maureen
Maureen
Alvaro
Alvaro
Javier
Javier
Catherine
Catherine
Jason
Jason
Jim
Jim
Fred
Fred
Bailey
Bailey
Tom
Tom
John
John
Captain Joji
Captain Joji

Comments

“Thank you to everyone on NAI’A who makes NAI’A what it is – an exceptional operation and a gateway to underwater wonders. What a fantastic crew! Thanks for an incredible life experience!”

Scott

~ Scott