Diving the wrecks of Coron

My 3rd time in Coron this year and, hell yeah, this time, it wasn’t because of work (but I missed the 2nd day dive because of a deck I had to prepare – oh well). This trip was a special one because it was my first ever wreck dive session.

After a few hours of paranoia and anxiety attacks, it was down to our first wreck, the famous seaplane carrier Akitsushima, one of the few ships that was still intact, given that the damages didn’t cut the vessel in half, and that the body’s sheet did not disintegrate even if it bore huge holes, marked by the bombs that penetrated it. As it was my first wreck, I didn’t know what was in store for me. At first I thought it would be dark as Dave, my buddy and instructor, asked me if I brought a flashlight (which I didn’t have), but as descended, I followed and held on to the marker’s rope (beautifully and naturally decorated with colorful creatures and sea plants) as instructed, and saw, right in front of my eyes, a spectacular structure that has settled underwater for the past few decades.

We went around and saw its crane, the bomb cylinder, it’s deck and surprise appearances by a lion fish and a huge cuttlefish.

Next was the Taiei Maru. It was a small freighter which landed on it’s starboard side making it easy for us to see the boiler without having to penetrate. I wasn’t really that happy with the dive because I couldn’t control my buoyancy.

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My dive buddy was our instructor, Dave, and woohoo, he led me inside a sunken ship on our last dive for the day, the East Tangat Gunboat. Thinking that I’d get creeped out, we went to the covered part of the deck and the hull, where huge Yellow Fish live, and surfaced, with me still having 1,000 psi. Seeing that I still had time, I asked if we could go back, even if it was already dark. After a few seconds of being in a state of shock, Dave agreed and we went back in, penetrating all areas we can fit in. He even let me hold on to his extra flashlight for me to see how creepy it could be. Let me remind you that my imagination do run wildly, but for that particular moment, I only admired what was right in front of me.

And as an added bonus, another huge cuttlefish made it’s special appearance, even bigger than what we saw the first time.

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Photo by Paz Santos of Diveshoppe

In total, I went to 3 wrecks. The first 2 were a bit of surreal for me, but the last one, the one Dave and I went back to, was something real and will remain in my memory bank for the rest of my dive life. Not only because the ships were full of history (Japanese crafts), but it helped me realize that I’m not afraid of ‘em, not even one bit.

SORD is a brave girl, after all.

Oh, and for the fish lovers out there, yes, we saw a lot of these:

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Photo by Paz Santos of Diveshoppe

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