The weather was great, as was the forecast, so Kirsty and I took Friday off, and headed down to Rye. Although we were diving pretty much at low tide, conditions at the pier were fantastic. The visibilty varied a bit, but was generally around 8 or 9 metres, which was a massive improvement on our dive at Flinders the week before. There were two large groups of divers coming out of the water as we got there, and they were back in again before we finished our dive, but we only came across them once while we were in the water.

At the pier there were lots of Goatfish, Spiny Leatherjackets and Wrasse, a few Scalyfins and Blennies, and out at the wreck there were a few Zebra fish, and a couple of Cuttlefish under the hull. 

We finally managed to make it out to Elsa's Reef on this dive, although the site now doesn't look anywhere as good as the photos I'd seen of it when it was first in place.

About 9 pm, incoming SS Penola ( 500 tons) struck and ran down City of Launceston which began to settle almost immediately. Passengers and crew transferred with difficulty to Penola. Sunken vessel valued at about 17,000 pounds - not insured. Sold by auction to Barrett, engineer of City of Launceston, who sold to a syndicate but salvage attempts eventually abandoned. Victorian Steam Navigation Board Inquiry held City of Launceston to blame for accident. Two separate Supreme Court actions by the respective owners for damages found in favour of the plaintiff in each case! An appeal by the aggrieved owner of the Penola for a non suit or a new trial was ultimately refused. Eleutheria, lighter, exhibited light at wreck site until it too sank. City of Launceston was the first shipwreck to be declared an Historic Shipwreck under new Victorian legislation. Built for the Melbourne to Launceston Bass Strait run, it was a regular trader across Bass Strait. - See more at: http://vhd.heritagecouncil.vic.gov.au/shipwrecks/124#sthash.aPC0R645.dpuf
About 9 pm, incoming SS Penola ( 500 tons) struck and ran down City of Launceston which began to settle almost immediately. Passengers and crew transferred with difficulty to Penola. Sunken vessel valued at about 17,000 pounds - not insured. Sold by auction to Barrett, engineer of City of Launceston, who sold to a syndicate but salvage attempts eventually abandoned. Victorian Steam Navigation Board Inquiry held City of Launceston to blame for accident. Two separate Supreme Court actions by the respective owners for damages found in favour of the plaintiff in each case! An appeal by the aggrieved owner of the Penola for a non suit or a new trial was ultimately refused. Eleutheria, lighter, exhibited light at wreck site until it too sank. City of Launceston was the first shipwreck to be declared an Historic Shipwreck under new Victorian legislation. Built for the Melbourne to Launceston Bass Strait run, it was a regular trader across Bass Strait. - See more at: http://vhd.heritagecouncil.vic.gov.au/shipwrecks/124#sthash.aPC0R645.dpuf

Divers: Peter Batchelor, Kirsty Batchelor

Weather/Sea: Calm seas, 5 Knots Southerly.
Visibility: 8-10 metres.
Water temperature: 19°C.
Maximum depth: 7.1 metres.
Time of entry: 13:27.
Duration: 90 minutes.

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