Katherine Lasdin: Diving Yongala

One of my biggest dreams when coming to Australia was coming to dive. This past weekend I got to fulfil that dream again. I decided I wanted to scuba dive the reefs off Townsville, so I went through ProDive on Maggie!

Friday consisted of just getting to the island, and preparing for what would be an exhausting two days. Saturday morning, I got picked up at 6:45 from my hotel and got brought to the shop! Immediately, I put on a wet suit and got ready to board the boat. The ride out to the reefs was rough! I do not get sea sick, and I was starting to feel it badly! But we finally made it to the reefs! They were so incredibly beautiful! We worked on a few skills and got to navigate ourselves around the reef. I made three short dives! After a full day out in the sun, we headed back to Maggie and I passed out! I don’t think I was in my hotel for more than 20 minutes before fallings asleep.

The next day I got the incredible opportunity to dive the SS Yongala! Again, the boat ride out to the wreck was horrible, but there was no current at the wreck. We got to 28 metres in depth and what I saw was incredible. The wreck is still intact and covered in marine life! Never have I seen so many large fish or sea snakes in one location! The water was 24 degrees (which at home would be nice). I must say, the coolest thing I saw besides the wreck under water had to be a bull ray! It was so incredible to see how large it was and to be so close! The pressure at 28 metres depth is so high, that a raw egg stays together in the water!

I am in such awe of how wonderful the wreck has been preserved, and I love how the dive and tour companies hold each other accountable for the no touching rule! If I ever get to return to Australia I hope to dive the wreck again. If anyone is debating whether to dive the wreck, I HIGHLY recommend it!

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