Bare Island Pt 2

Location: La Perouse
State: NSW
Diver Qualification: Open Water
Average Depth: 9mtrs
Max Depth: 22mtrs
Average Visibility: 5mtrs
Access Type: BOAT/SHORE
Directions: Drive to the end of Anzac Pde and park closest to the site you wish to dive.
Description: There are at least six sites, one pretty much a boat dive only.

You can walk down the rock face on the land-side of the bridge to dive three sites- the little reef back into Congwong Beach, the east side of the island and the reef to what is known as Vince's point, named after a regular from Sydney Dive Academy. The particular point is actually the one you can see if you stand on top of the grassy area looking towards the man-made breakwall and nine out of ten times there will be fishermen on it. You can actually dive from that point back into Frenchman's Bay for something new.

Crossing the bridge you can gain access to two more sites- the west side of the island and if you walk to the front of the island, you can get a step closer to the bommie. Trying to swim all the way to the bommie is pointless as you will use your air up before you will safely reach your SAFEST exit underneath the bridge. Don't try to get back onto the island as it is too hazardous.

Summing up critters and stuff: the reef to Congwong Beach- I call it the Northeast wall- is great for novice divers and if you want to avoid people in general. Lots of nudibranchs, fishes and occasionally seadragons too. Your max. depth is 10m.

East side of the island is about 12m, provided you can swim out far enough and would have enough air to get back. It consists of pretty sponges, the further you get from average diver traffic. Very rarely you may see red indianfish here.

The reef out towards the bommie itself can drop down to 21m and is a long way from home. THIS MUST ONLY BE DIVED BY EXPERIENCED DIVERS! There can be currents and unexpected surprises for you. But the reef itself is pristine, untouched. The growth is much better than most of the island, except perhaps the west side.

The west side of the island does get to around 17-18m, but be aware that there is usually a current at the 16m mark near a little cave. This you will come across if you choose to enter closest to the bridge and follow the wall out. Once beyond 12m profuse sponge gardens take over the scenery, but fishlife seems always scarce. This is the most reliable place in Sydney to see red indianfish and eastern spiny gurnards, we saw seven gurnards on the one dive.

The reef towards Vince's point is only about 10m deep and is pretty untouched due to its lack of divers. seadragons are more common here than most other places around the island, maybe they are just simply trying to avoid divers- this is a known factor contributing to their disappearance from some popular divesites. If too many divers harass them- YOU MUST NOT DO SO AS THE WEEDY SEADRAGON IS A PROTECTED SPECIES- they may opt to move house.

Bare Island bommie is a great boat dive, as long as your expert skipper doesn't anchor on top of the bommie and becomes a casualty of its fury like many boats have in the past.

Excellent sponge growth and the accompanying life awaits you here.

Bare Island is often overlooked, it is one great area as you can find a site to suit you during most conditions.