Michael McFadyen's Scuba Diving Web Site
Home · Contact Me · Sydney Reef Dive Sites · Sydney Shipwrecks · NSW Dive Sites · Australian Dive Sites · Overseas Dive Sites · Dive Accidents and Incidents · My Yachting Adventures · 4WD Trips · Weather · Search 18 May 2024 16:39

About Me
My Diving
Web Links - Dive Clubs
St George Scuba Club
Some of my Best Photos
Contact Me

Dive Sites
Sydney Reef Dive Sites
Sydney Shipwrecks
Sydney Dive Visibility, Swell and Temps
Kelly Talking on ABC Sydney about Shipwrecks
NSW Dive Sites
Sydney Shipwreck Summary
NSW Shipwreck GPS/Marks
Australian Dive Sites
Overseas Dive Sites
Aircraft I have Dived
Old Bottles
Free Shipwreck Books

Dive Related Equipment
Shearwater Predator and Heinrichs Weikamp OSTC 2N
Uwatec Aladin Dive Computers
Apollo AV1 Underwater Scooter
Bauer Compressor
DIY Oxygen Stick - Nitrox
GoPro HD Hero Video Camera
My Camera Setup
Purchase of New Dive Boat
My Dive Boat - Mak Cat
My Old Dive Boat - Le Scat
My Dive Gear
GPS and Diving
Make Your Own Car Tank Rack

Marine Life
Rarer Sydney Marine Life
Bare Island Pygmy Pipe Horses
Bare Island Sea Horses
Bare Island Nudibranchs
Bare Island Marine Life
Encounter with Southern Right Whale and Calf

Other Dive Info
How Weather Affects Diving in Sydney
Visibility and Wave Averages in Sydney
Waves and Diving
Diving Weather and Sea Conditions
Tide Tables
Dive Accidents and Incidents
Dive Book Reviews
Site Map
Noel Hitchins 1951-2005
Lloyd Bridges - Mike Nelson in Sea Hunt
My Yachting Adventures
Below is a list of links to the main pages about my yacht, Catlypso and My Yachting Adventures:
  • Purchase of Catlypso
  • Details about Catlypso
  • Cleaning/Repairing Catlypso
  • My Yachting Adventures.
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    Michael's 4WD Trips
    Click here for a list of my Four Wheel Drive and Camping Trips.
    Home Brewing
    Click here for an article about Home Brewing.
    Sydney Dive Site Hints
    "Bare Island has the greatest number of dives of any location in Sydney"
    Tyre Reef
    The section of Sydney's coastline that is relatively undived is the area between Botany Bay and Sydney Harbour. Apart from just south of the Harbour on South Head, the Magic Point Sharks and a couple of shore dives like Shark Point and North Bondi, there is no visitation by dive charter operators. This is a pity as there are literally hundreds of great dive sites here.

    Just south of the Magic Point grey nurse shark site at South Maroubra there are quite a few great dive sites. This is behind the Long Bay Rifle Range and the coast here is relatively untouched by man. Until the early 1990s, the Malabar Sewage Treatment Works poured basically untreated shit into the water at Yellow Rock, the southern-most point of this section of coast. However, once the deep-water outfall was opened and the treatment works upgraded to secondary treatment, the water cleaned up so dramatically it was amazing.

    Before these works, the sponges and kelp all over this area (if you were brave enough to dive here) were all stunted. Within a few months the environment started to improve, with the sponges and sea squirts growing to normal size and the kelp coming back to be lush and all covering.

    In the mid to late 1990s we did a number of dives along the rifle range. We found some great sites, including Red Flag, the Ladder and Yellow Rock. However, apart from a couple of dives in 2002 and 2004, I had not dived this area again till late 2009.

    From Botany Bay, turn left as you exit the heads and run towards the north. Go past Little Bay and Long Bay and just after you pass the outer northern headland of Long Bay, run in close to the shore with your depth sounder on. You will see that this whole section of the coastline has a really great bottom. There are a number of walls here, all roughly running north-south.

    Go to GPS S33ΒΊ 57' 59.3" E151ΒΊ 15' 55.8" (all my diving GPS co-ordinates use AUS66 datum - read my GPS page if you do not know what this means). Run in towards the shore and drop anchor when the depth comes up from 24 metres or so to about 18 metres.

    Once on the bottom, you will see that there is a wall that drops from about 20 metres to 24 metres. This wall weaves around a bit, sometimes going north-south but other times in towards the shore for a few metres. Once at the deeper wall, drop down and head north. Along this section there are some large rocks/boulders off the wall, with some sea dragons hanging around the kelp.

    After about 100 metres there are some very large boulders on the wall area and in good visibility, you will be able to seen another wall that goes from about 10 metres to 15 metres. In between the two walls the bottom generally slopes and is a rocky bottom. These boulders have some overhangs and swim-throughs. There are also a lot of fishlife in between them. The fish are generally ladder-finned pomfrets, yellowtail and seapike, with some one-pot pullers. There can be thousands of the pomfrets and they make a spectacular sight.

    This is a good spot to turn around. Come back at the bottom of the shallower wall, in the 15 to 17 metre range. Again, there are some small overhangs in the main wall and you can get eastern blue devilfish, cuttlefish and the normal cave dwelling fish here.

    Once back at the anchor, head south for about 50 metres and then out to the deeper wall. Follow this back to the north to the anchor. You will probably still have a few minutes left to hang around the anchor before you need to ascend.

    This is an excellent dive site, it is a pity that you can only dive here if you have your own boat.

    Copyright © Michael McFadyen 1990 to 2024
    Non-commercial use of an article or photograph is permitted with appropriate URL reference to this site.
    Dive shops, dive operators, publications and government departments cannot use anything without first seeking and receiving approval from Michael McFadyen.
    This web site has been wholly thought up, designed, constructed and funded for almost 30 years by Michael McFadyen without any help from the Australian Dive Industry.
    Website created 1996!