It was a bit of a wreck hunting trip at the weekend. Brian (Lugg) had a couple of sets of co-ordinates that seemed worth investigating, one of which, the Moraffi, was very close to the Neptune – a wreck that we haven’t dived for a while. The sea going out looked flat calm but in fact there was a bit of a swell causing a few bumps and a slightly slower trip than it might have been but we still made reasonable time.
The co-ordinates come from a locally produced chart that isn’t ultra reliable and sure enough nothing was visible on the echo-sounder except sandy bottom. Just the same we noticed some fishing pots not too far away so we checked out that area and found a lump on the seabed that was clearly something significant. Brian and Mike A were duly dispatched over the side to investigate further.
The Moraffi it turns out, is a barge about 25m x 15m, sitting upright and about 3m from seabed to deck. The sides have rotted away on the port side particularly allowing access inside where you can squeeze around a forest of internal struts. At the stern a swim-though is possible. There are plenty of snappers of various sorts that call the wreck home and there were five or six sweetlips at the bow end. Mike and Brian had spotted a leopard ray but it had gone by the time the rest of us got down there. To be fair it’s not the most exciting wreck in the area but the fish life was scenic and it makes another target close to the Neptune which is about 500m away.
And so to the Neptune. To those unfamiliar with it, the Neptune is an upturned barge rather larger than the Moraffi that came to grief after a collision. There are some areas to access inside although a nice swim-through that we used to do has now gone after part of the structure collapsed. It’s easy enough to do a complete circuit, checking out some holes as you go round. Again the fish life is very attractive.
Ian Hussey and guest writers.