Scuba dive Apo Reef from Rags Liveaboard

Scuba dive Apo Reef - Pictures


More pages about diving Apo Reef.

 

Menor Island

This dive is often done as the last one in the day. The wall, and deeper - almost channel-like plateau at around 20m face west, so even in the late afternoon we tend to have enough light there to make it a very enjoyable dive.

The deeper plateau consists of rocks and coral bommies surrounded by sand and often you can see sleeping marble rays or white-tip sharks. If you approach them slowly and carefully you might be able to get very close and get that close up shark eye shot you always wanted! The wall drops down very deep in front of the plateau like a giant step into the abyss, but unless you are doing a late technical dive, you should not venture down there since this is usually your fourth dive of the day!

At the north-west corner of Menor Island is the so called Manta Point. While there is a chance to see a Manta sometimes, the disadvantage of diving here is that there is little else other than barren rocks to see. So we leave this to divers choice, if they want to try.The night is usually spent in the Channel in between the outer reef which provides a sheltered anchorage and the possibility of a night dive for the true addicts!

Let's explore some sites on the outer reef the next day maybe starting with:

 


 

Menor Island

This dive is often done as the last one in the day. The wall, and deeper - almost channel-like plateau at around 20m face west, so even in the late afternoon we tend to have enough light there to make it a very enjoyable dive.

The deeper plateau consists of rocks and coral bommies surrounded by sand and often you can see sleeping marble rays or white-tip sharks. If you approach them slowly and carefully you might be able to get very close and get that close up shark eye shot you always wanted! The wall drops down very deep in front of the plateau like a giant step into the abyss, but unless you are doing a late technical dive, you should not venture down there since this is usually your fourth dive of the day!

At the north-west corner of Menor Island is the so called Manta Point. While there is a chance to see a Manta sometimes, the disadvantage of diving here is that there is little else other than barren rocks to see. So we leave this to divers choice, if they want to try.The night is usually spent in the Channel in between the outer reef which provides a sheltered anchorage and the possibility of a night dive for the true addicts!

Let's explore some sites on the outer reef the next day maybe starting with:

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Apo 29

This site is named after its depth mark on the sea chart , but you might also hear this site called Barracuda Hill. They like to hover here in big schools. The disk corals are mostly broken, but if you are lucky and the currents are running - the place is loaded with shark action, (esp. at deeper depths).

This is a more advanced dive, not much use coming here when there is little current, but you should try to stay in one area rather than drifting away - which makes it a bit more challenging. Best thing to do is to look for a sheltered spot and to wait and see what happens. Once the barracudas and sharks get used to your presence they move closer and seem to stay effortlessly in the current. Definitely a dive where you should use nitrox, but, because of the depth, it still tends to be a

rather short dive. Techies can explore the deep drop off, lots of shark action sometimes at 50+m in a strong current!

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Apo South

Until about fifteen years ago Apo Reef was heavily fished, using very destructive methods such as dynamite. In some areas you can still see the effects of this. Not so much in the northern part of the reef, since this area consists mainly of sheer walls, which isn't very effective for dynamite fishing. The southern part is mostly a shallow plateau around ten to twelve meters deep, with a steep drop off at the end. On the plateau you can still see damaged corals, often even wide trenches of broken coral which interchange with fantastic table corals, probably the biggest you will ever see, and fields of stag horn corals. During the typhoon season storms and waves batter this part of the reef so most of the recent coral destruction is caused by this natural occurrence. Sharks seem to love this set up and lie around sleeping on those trenches

or patrol between the corals. At the deeper end, down at the drop off, you frequently can see grey reef sharks.

The dive starts as shallow as ten meters and then you can slowly make your way heading south to the drop off. Again, the boat will pick you up, so don't worry about your navigation skills!


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Apo East and North

Basically the entire North-East side is one endless wall with many overhangs, cracks and small caves. Good chance to see sharks here again, that's why the spot is also called Shark Ridge. You can dive in various locations here and you can be assured it will never get boring! On the northern most point of the outer reef lie the remains of a ship which ran aground on this treacherous reef. Leave your explorer reels on the boat though. This wreck only serves as a landmark since it is in very shallow water. The wall in front of it is very steep and often our last dive on the way home to Puerto Galera


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Apo Northwest

More walls here of course. We tend to pick two spots with a bit more current to drift along and enjoy the fish life. It is also nice to just stay on top of the reef and see what you can encounter there. Coral growth is not as good as around the island but the topography and marine life still guarantee a nice dive


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Hunter's Rock

A steep pinnacle in the middle of the ocean and a good ten nautical miles away from Apo - makes this a site which is not always on the menu due to weather and tides. The top of the pinnacle almost reaches the surface and the currents can be very strong

You guessed it: Experienced divers only and a good chance to see bigger fish, namely sharks and trevallies. Sometimes during the year lots of sea snakes mate there as well. Don't come here for the corals though, because there aren't many, didn't you see enough at Apo already?

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Merope Rock

A big underwater mound reaching below 4m from the surface and similar conditions like Hunter's Rock make this an experienced divers only site again.

Keep your eyes open for pelagics here! Not much corals here again – (come on, you can't have everything)!

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End of 'Scuba dive Apo Reef '