Dive Details


Logged dive number



Sunday 21 March 2021


12:29pm - 2:10pm


Negligible current and strong surge at times


2 to 4 metres


101 minutes

Surface interval

4 days 3:1 (days hh:mm)

Maximum depth

15.2 m

Average depth

9.7 m

Water temperature



Dive Profile from Garmin Descent Mk1

Tides at Botany Bay AEDT

Note that tides at dive site may vary from above location.














Once again Sydney was being battered by big seas, this time a large easterly swell. This was added to by torrential rains and widespread flooding. Kurnell was out for diving due to the swell so I thought I'd give Bare Island a go. I knew that it would be protected enough that I could get in and out safely but did not have high hopes for visibility or surge. I put off my weekend dive from yesterday to today as it was less likely to be raining heavily.

I decided to dive in my wetsuit today as if it was raining while I was getting ready it would be less uncomfortable than in my drysuit.

When I arrived at Bare Island around noon it was only sprinkling with rain and I was able to get into my wetsuit only getting slightly damp. While I was getting ready I noticed two other divers getting ready. They had dived already and were about to go in for a second dive. They reported visibility of 2 to 3 metres and moderate surge. This was much better than I expected.

I got in on the northern side of the island 10 metres to the west of the ramp. The other two divers were not far ahead of me. I had expected to see evidence of the rain such as dirty surface water but it was quite clean. I swam out on the surface before descending. The visibility was at least 2 metres as the other had reported. There was some surge in the shallows but it was less than the surge we'd had at The Monument on Wednesday. The water temperature was around 20°C which was nice as I was in a wetsuit.

I swam along the sand at the edge of the kelp to the rocks and the remains of the outboard motor. I swam up onto the shelf and along in front of the boulders to the rock where I have been seeing pygmy pipehorses. I looked over the rock and spotted a female pygmy pipehorse. I took some photographs of her and then looked for others. I found a large male near the other end of the rock. I looked for more but could not find any. There was a bit of surge but not too bad.

I headed along the top to the slope and made my way down the slope to the rocks with the purple sea tulips. I looked on the rock where we've been seeing the seahorses and spotted the female seahorse. I looked for the male but could not see him. As I was there the other two divers swam up the slope. They waved and I tried to get them over to see the seahorse but they swam off.

I continued slowly down the slope. As I got deeper the surge became less. I looked on the rocks for pygmy pipehorse as I swam but found none.

I swam past Juvy Rock and on to Ship Rock. I looked on both rocks for pygmies but found none.

I continued around to in front of the caves. I looked in the usual crevices for Sawtooth Pipefish finding one with the alternate colour patterning.

I followed the reef to the west looking in more crevices as I went. I found another Sawtooth Pipefish.

I continued west. The surge was increasing slightly as I went. I turned, dropped down to the lower reef and came back.

As I came back in front of the caves I spotted the Sawtooth Pipefish again.

I slowly made my way up the slope. I was looking for pygmy pipehorses on the way and spotted a small female on one of the rocks close to the wall below Pygmy Rock. I looked for a male but could not see one.

I headed to the rocks with the purple sea tulips. Three divers swam by me as I reached them.

I found the female seahorse again and after a bit of searching found the male. The surge was a little annoying here.

I swam to the top of the slope and swam along the boulders to the rock with the pygmy pipehorses. I found the male and female I had seen on my way out.

I headed to the outboard motor and started my safety stop. I continued along the sand doing my safety stop. I then exited around 5 metres from the ramp.