Wreck, reef and spas on the roof top with a view
Looking for a long weekend get away, how does the sun shine coast sound while. A great weekend away diving the wreck of HMAS Brisbane, checking out the great Flinders Reef and staying in a nice hotel with spars on the roof top! Yep sounds great to me.
Heap up on the Saturday and dive that day on the HMAS Brisbane. HMAS Brisbane was sunk 10 years ago and has now become home to heaps of marine life. A resident school of predatory yellow tailed king fish now ‘buzz’ the schools of bait fish that surround the HMAS Brisbane. Local inhabitants include a large bull & eagle rays, angler fish, lion fish, blennies, nudibranchs, sea hares, squid and a school of juvenile red emperor and snapper. Other visitors include a shovelled nose rays, greasy cod and eagle rays. An octopus has made a home in a pyrotechnic tube on the deck. Up to 10 huge Queensland Grouper have been seen at one time off the bow of the ship. A turtle has taken up residency on the aft funnel and eagle rays cruise between the 2 funnels. There’s also a huge amount of soft corals to be seen and hard corals are really getting established as well.
The wreck sits in 27m of water and is 133m long so lots to see down there. My favourite dive is descending down the stacks to the inside deck of the wreck. The stack has beautiful coloured soft coral throughout it. If you are keen to swim thought eh wreck it is very safe or if you want to stay on the outside there is heap to see was well. The guns are really cool as well, perfect spot for a photo!
During this trip we will not be staying at the standard dive shack accommodation. We will be doing it in style right in town in a 4.5star hotel with spas on the roof top! With a double dive each day there will be plenty of time to look around town, enjoy the facilities of the accommodation and relax on this holiday.
The after a relaxing afternoon and evening at our nice hotel we will do a day trip over to flinders reef on the Sunday. Flinders reef is an isolated reef near Moreton Island, 5 km north-west of Cape Moreton in South East Queensland. It has the highest number of coral species of any sub tropical reef system along Australia’s east coast. Flinders Reef is one of Queensland’s most popular dive sites.
The reef has more than 175 fish species. There are more species and varieties of corals in this one area than any other single reef on the Great Barrier Reef. The diverse amount of marine life include schools of Wrasse, Sweetlip, Trevally, Parrot, Bat, Surgeon, turtles and tropical fish. Manta Rays, Wobbegongs and Leopard Sharks are among the larger creatures that reside here. Sightings of Whaler sharks are sometimes seen on the eastern side of Flinders.
We will then stay up there on the Sunday night to allow for off gassing and of course a few sun downer drinks before heading home on the Monday ready for work on the Tuesday…
The Brisbane: Commissioned into the Royal Australian Navy in 1967 the HMAS Brisbane was a 133 metre, Charles F Adams Class DDG, guided missile destroyer of approx 5000 tons. The HMAS BRISBANE served Australia faithfully for 34 years, till she was decommissioned in 2001. She served in both the Vietnam and Gulf wars and assisted on many humanitarian missions such as in Darwin in 1974 after cyclone Tracey.
Its New Life: In January 2003, the Queensland Government agreed to accept the decommissioned HMAS Brisbane from the Commonwealth Government for sinking off the Sunshine Coast as an artificial reef and dive site.
The Scuttling: After extensive and careful preparation, the ship was towed for its last journey to the Sunshine Coast. With the expertise of a crew who had extensive experience in scuttling ships for artificial reefs, explosives were carefully positioned in specially made wooden frames hard against the inside skin of the ship, below the waterline. On 31 July 2005 at a site 2.9 nautical miles east of Mudjumba Island off the Sunshine Coast these explosives were detonated and in 2 minutes and 10 seconds, the former HMAS BRISBANE was on the bottom in 28 metres of water. HMAS Brisbane being towed to her resting place.