We start off by exploring off to the West of the yacht club, where we had been told we might find some ledges where Port Jacksons could be seen, and perhaps even an Eagle Ray or two. Obviously we weren't in the right location, as while we did find some interesting features there was nothing like the ledges we hoped to see. The visibility was fantastic, particularly close in, where we could see over 10 metres. The sun, being a bit higher in the sky than on our last dive here, penetrated much more deeply into the water, and we found that we were able to swim much further apart than usual here.

Eventually we decided to head over to our usual area. It was a long swim, but well worth it, as we found a large school of Zebra fish grazing on one section of the reef, quite a few large Dusky Morwong, Old Wives, and some fairly large Snapper as well. No Banjo Sharks or Port Jacksons today though. Some of the Leatherjackets were occasionally hanging vertically in the water, so perhaps the agregation that we have observed in previous years is about to happen again.

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: Kirsty Batchelor, Peter Batchelor

Weather/Sea: Calm.
Visibility: 10 metres plus.
Water temperature: 19°C.
Maximum depth: 4.9 metres.
Time of entry: 09:55
Duration: 91 minutes.

 

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