I woke up this morning and was told it had been thirty years. Thirty years ?
Yep. 30 years ago i was met by my good wife Beulah...wow so much time went by so quick. Oh,we did have a full thirty years, not many dull moments. Thinking back, it was an amazing time we spent together. We experienced enough to fill a book - ordinary and extraordinary stuff. Sometimes i wonder where i would be without Beulah...? But that's life and we hope to have another thirty in us.
A big Thank You to Felix Widmaier
We met Felix on one of his dive holidays at Protea Banks. He came with his fiancé Barbara and like so many of our divers , they had a magnificent time. So every year we saw the two at the BOOT show in Duesseldorf and in January Felix asked if he could perhaps spend 2 months with us and help out. Okay, we decided, why not. Helping out is not so easy on Protea Banks as people need to really be familiar with the reef and all its tricks and moods before they can lead dives. So in early March Felix arrived and was made janitor of the Diver Villa to start with. His job was to change broken light bulbs, add screws here and there etc. He did very well....
When it came to diving we were a bit skeptical. Before long, Felix assisted divers and buddied up with the ones who were a bit scared. All went perfectly well and we could see this is an experienced diving instructor with a head in the right place.
I was barely after his third dive to the caves that he knew perfectly well where the caves were and how to get there. A week into his stay good old Felix was leading dives and making people happy. He became a true asset to our little company and was liked by guests as well as staff. Good job, old friend. We all miss you here !!!
All the best for you and Barbara and hopefully we will have you with us again in the near future when you come on a holiday.
SARDINE RUN - Last Minute
We still have some places left on our Sardine Run program. We are doing our Sardine Run from the beautiful, picturesque town of Coffee Bay. Nestled between the weathered cliffs which keep the Wild Coast at bay is the lovely Ocean View Hotel where we are based and accommodated. The rooms are comfortable, the food amazing and the entire feel of this establishment is pure magic. Every morning after a hearty breakfast we get transferred by our 4x4s to our sleepy, unspoilt launch site where we safely drive through a small river out into the open sea. our microlight plane piloted by the highly experienced sardine run spotter Louis immediately meets us after the launch and directs us to the best possible activities in our reach. this happens several times a day in order to guarantee the most successful outcome possible.
Our basic package costs Euro 1400.- and includes 5 nights accommodation/ 4 days Sardine Run activity on the boat, three meals a day, spotter services of our plane, heated drying room for our equipment and, most importantly, area exclusivity. Due to the set up at Coffee Bay we are the only company operating in this entire area.
The basic package can be extended at a cost of Euro 340 per extra day for as long as is wished.
Don't miss this once in a lifetime experience !!!!
SARDINE RUN - Last Minute
25.5. 2014. 200 Raggies on Protea Banks
After a week out of the water, Protea Banks has changed her face drastically. We get out in lovely weather conditions, no wind, hot and lovely day and find a calm blue ocean. We drop in, go through about 5m of murky water and see the bottom straight away. Nothing less than 25m vis. And the bottom of the ocean is teeming with sharks. Raggies wherever we look. I count 200+ and eventually stop counting. Amongst the Raggies there is a Tiger, 5 Zambezies and 2 Black Tips. It is hard to describe the scene, just simply mind blowing.
We have a group of Frenshies with us and they think it is normal for Protea Banks ....
Where in the world,can we see 200 Raggies in one dive ? I want to go there.....
I survived my birthday week unharmed and am now officially able to claim my pension. At this stage it would amount to R. 3450 per month. After long deliberations Beulah and i decided to rather carry on working for a few more years and keep paying into the fund.....J
Diving on Protea Banks is quiet this week. We don't have divers which is a more than welcome break for all of us. Obviously the weather was perfect....
From Sunday we are back in the current of Protea Banks. Can't wait to see how many Raggies we will have in the northern caves.
The next day it got even better...Under Karen's expert guidance our Austrian friends got what they came here for. One Tiger Shark stayed throughout the entire dive and gave the divers something to remember. Additionally they had 9 Zambezis and one Black Tip. They called it The Shark Fest.
On their way to the surface their mouths dropped open when suddenly a sunfish appeared out of no-where. In my 18 years on Protea Banks i heard of three sunfish sightings in total. I never had the privilege of encountering one.
Here are some pictures taken by Andreas Gamsjaeger.
11.5. 2014 What a Day !!!!
We had one of those amazing dive days which makes legendary memories. Our first dive was done at the caves of the Northern Pinnacle of Protea Banks. Although the visibility yesterday was pretty low, today it was back to 25m. As we got down deep we saw a lot of Raggy activity. I counted 11 Raggies in the first cave and afterwards saw another 4 on the way toi the tunnel. SO all in all 15 Sandtiger Sharks on Protea Banks. They are definitely coming now. Felix dived a bit further away from the caves and was rewarded with a huge tiger who took her time to look at the behaviour of the divers !!! ....J
Our second dive then was a Baited Dive. Vis down just below 10m unfortunately , but this did not disturb Mr. Curly and his family of 9 Bull Sharks. What a show they gave us !!! Just like in the old days. I am still totally hyped up about this gigantic priviledge we had today. The Zams allowed us in the midst of them and played with us. Unbelievable - Unforgettable !!!
Been doing a lot of diving lately. Weather and sea conditions are generally good. The visibility on Protea Banks was at its lowest today with about 10m. All other days average 20m, sometime even 30m. Watertemperature is a comfortable 24C
On the Northern Pinnacle of Protea Banks we still have 4 Raggies while on the Southern Pinnacle we usually see a couple of Giant Guitar Sharks and a few Zambezis.
We are doing Baited Dives almost every day. This dive clearly is the best we have to offer and is very popular with our divers. On most Baited Dives we see Tiger Sharks although they hardly stay longer than 5 minutes. Thereafter the dive gets taken over by 4-6 Zambezi Sharks mixed in with a couple of Black Tips, mostly only 1-3 in number. Diving with Bull Sharks is an absolutely amazing experience
Shelly Beach Launch Site
Shelly Beach Launch Site
I took the day off for a change and ended up working all day at home. How nice !!
The boys went alone, punched a lovely wave and turned an irritating day for me into a good day for everyone else. Three divers did not pitch this morning. This is enough to chase me straight home. But we can't punish the ones who did rock up and so we did our Baited Dive as planned. Thank God, there is justice in mother nature. The loyal, reliable divers were rewarded with two tigers of which the one stayed all dive long. This is what Tiger Diving on Protea Banks is all about. Absolutely magic !!!
Diving on Protea Banks is getting better and better again. Last month we struggled to find sharks. We were happy to see a black tip or two which we normally loathe. That is how desperate we were...!!! Tiger season was just not happening. Usually April is by far the best month of the year. Not this year.
Now things seem to normalise again. Today we had two tigers, three zams and two black tips on the baited dive. First dive to the caves of Protea Banks we saw two raggies and a black tip.
We had Sharkproject Austria here for almost a week. The four of them were on a fact finding mission mainly about shark conservation and shark net issues.
Sharkprofect has two million members.....
Obviously many heads were turned in little Shelly Beach as Walter and his team interviewed a number of people on camera. Rumours are still running high in and around the base and fishermen's bar. What is this all about ? is the question printed on everyone's forehead.