With talk of dark visibility, remote ocean location and lurking sharks looming out of crevices I admit I was a little apprehensive but very much excited about a day off dive out at Stork Patch – one of the best dive sites on Mahe island, Seychelles. The boys were throwing comments around about squeezing plastic bottles to attract the big beasts and revving up the anti for an epic sighting out in the deep, off the south coast of the island. The grey rainy skies didn’t help as the boat tossed over the rough water out beyond the land masses.
But, we flung ourselves off the boat and in the first minute we were down to 15 and then 20m meters in the middle of pure blue shark waters – about 10 white tipped reef sharks were there to greet us, bingo! There they were just cruising on the sandy bed in and around us! Awe struck we just watched and appreciated the majesty and strength in their 1.5-3 m length bodies. They looked strong and at home in their blue abyss darting from left to right, inquisitive and probably hungry, but seemingly content to share their waters with five eager divers. The next 50 minutes was pure joy – just drifting and hovering among a bevy of tropical fish from snappers to groupers, butterflies and angels; two of the biggest lobsters I’ve ever come across in the rock cracks teased their meter long tentacles at us and still the sharks kept playing – every few minutes I caught sight of another beedy eye and white underside maneuvering in the distance and getting closer. We were in their environment and could only sit and watch the underwater world unravel around us.
Suddenly a hundred or more barracuda sprung us from nowhere and took a barrel formation around us – we were caught in the middle of the big boys just circling and circling (I felt like I was filming a ‘blue planet’ documentary)… this was inspiration through a regulator!
You can dive everyday to varying sites but it never gets boring – a new sites means new 'sights' and new appreciation for such colour, vibrant and curious life just out there. Disappointed, ‘hell no’; worth the trip, ‘hell yeah’. Topped off with enormous luminous, alien-shaped squid breezing on through and two octopi flirting through their colour palette, it couldn’t have been a better morning out at sea.