Duplicat's Diary

Diving North Minerva
by Rick at 00:54:23, 2017-10-17 (day 1262)
This morning we used the light winds to dive the outside reef of Minerva North. We thought about diving the pass but it didn’t look to interesting and had a bit of current, so we decided to do the wall. This was most definitely the correct call. It was superb! Up there as one of the best dives I’ve done in the Pacific.

The drop off seemed infinite - it just disappeared down into the inky dark blue as far as you could see. The visibility was very good, and the coral was superb - better even than Nomuka Iki. The fish life was abundant and totally unafraid. We saw a few sharks which ignored us, but the other large pelagics were interested and swam right up to us. If it wasn’t for the change in the weather thats approaching, I’d do that dive again.

We were diving with 2 dinghies tied together (in part because of my outboard woes), and reels with lines up to my dinghy. When the wind blew, it was hard to pull them back to the reef, but in general it worked pretty well.

However, the weather is changing and we’re set for a couple of days of windy stuff. We’ve moved down to the S ‘corner’ (as much as you can get a corner on a circular atoll) to get more protection from the reef and less fetch. We’ll still get the wind, but won’t be bouncing around so much. Whilst we’ve been moving down the atoll, another boat arrived and based on what we told them about the dive we did, they immediately stopped to do the same. However, they too are headed down to this end. Nautilus are here now and Ian and Stephanie are joining us for dinner. The other boat (‘Shesan’) and one we’ve heard on the VHF arriving soon will head this way. Vega is still underway - not sure of their ETA yet.

Finally - an update on the outboard… I think the problem stems back to a part which was broken (by another cruiser) when trying to fix the carburettor in French Guiana. Its part of the linkage that increases the throttle and gives some ‘advance’. Several fixes have been tried - and I will look for a replacement arm (though only the ‘cuff’ has broken), however it seemed to have too much play in it. I spent a bit of time on it this morning using FormCARD to finally get a relatively good solid fix - and the outboard has behaved beautifully since. Fingers crossed!