Diving Day 4 - Ngemelis / Chandelier CavJune 2, 2016 in Palau ⋅ ⛅ 28 °C
The fourth day of diving took us back to Ngemelis Island for a mellow dive as well as Palau's quintessential dive site Blue Corner. On the boat, we were joined by a boisterous couple from South Africa. Jonathan was a physician turned travel guide, G(iovanna) was a former dive master at Sam's, and together they own Apex Expeditions. Hearing about their travels made us look like home bodies. Despite Jonathan meeting the adrenaline junky cliche, we enjoyed talking to someone so passionate about exploring the world's marine and wildlife.
The first dive was Fairyland. With no current and great viz, this dive made for spectacular macro shots. For those of you not familiar, underwater macro photography focuses on the little things: anemone, nudibranches, small reef fish, soft coral formations, etc. This really illustrates the staggering amount of marine bio diversity present in the Indo-Pacific coral triangle. The new camera setup worked great with macro mode and the strobe light, and we got some pointers on fish ID from G and Sergi. More pictures to come once we filter through our collection. Lunch was spent in the boat moored near an idyllic beach with perfect weather.
Relaxation was not the theme of the second dive, our first experience at Blue Corner. We were briefed on using reef hooks which are used to attach yourself to rocks / dead coral in the strong currents. Upon entering, we inched down the mooring line and then had to vigorously kick against the current to reach the area protected by the wall. After drifting along the wall, we hooked in to watch massive schools of jacks swim by, joined by many great reef and white tip sharks coming close and then fading off into the blue. There were also several turtles, barracudas, bumphead parrotfish, and an octopus.
The day's final dive was near the dive shop at Chandelier Cave. After dropping off several divers, we took a 30 sec boat ride to the opening. We saw four different chambers where we surfaced and "hung out" for a bit, chatting with Sergi. The first one was the biggest and it had a large Stalactite that looked like a Chandelier, giving the cave its name. Of course, since it was a cave, it was dark, so we closely followed Sergi to each chamber so we wouldn't get lost. However, on the way out, we turned off our torches and swam towards the light blue opening of the cave.Read more