Rainy day on the reef

This morning the place to be, was on the reef. Just as we warmed up and dried off, weather-wise, it turned wet, grey and just plain nasty out. The good news was, it doesn’t rain underwater and there’s a boat captain paid enough to sit on the surface chewing betel nut and getting poured on while watching for bubbles while we play.

Stormy Yap Island Micronesia

Gapow Reef, Yap Divers Micronesia The sky was so dark, the ocean looked an even more emerald green. At 60 feet the weather was awesome- about 82 degrees, clear and blue. Charcoal colored storm clouds above make for a different ambiance underwater. The only place it was calm, quiet and warm, was on the reef.

We were on the Pacific side of the island where it’s mostly an easy sloping corral wall with a lot of micro-topography and small fish. Sand bottoms, overhangs, swim throughs, cracks and giant undercut corral pillars decorated our field of view.

Nico took us down the reef slope over a deep canyon with an either-or option; stay on top with all the light and color, or go deep and drift a vertical wall floating over a white sand bottom. Even if you dived this site on back-to-back tanks, you would see new terrain.

Down in the corral, all the little guys were out in full color and charm. We had manta shrimp, lobster and little nudibranchs doing whatever nudibranchs do, we even saw a flat worm swimming in mid-water. Pat was filming it swim straight up like it was climbing a staircase, then turn on its back fold up and drop like a rock, like some kind of flatworm workout.

Flatworm in mid water, Yap MicronesiaFlatworm in mid water, Yap Micronesia being filmed
Anemone Fish, Yap Micronesia
Nudibranch Yap MicronesiaTrumpet fish, Yap Micronesia
Reef Lobster, Yap Micronesia

Spare Air Bottle After UseSpare Air, my stupidity counterweight. On our surface interval I unloaded a tank with over 800 psi and reloaded with a tank with less than 300. Before the second dive I failed to double check my setup, and about 8 minutes into our dive, it in a swim through, I ran out of air. I looked at my computer and it showed 0 psi and before I even started thinking about how this all happened, I pulled a spare air bottle off my gear and made a safe ascent. Today was my experience building.

After a quick tank swap at the boat and the drama was over and I rejoined the group. Meanwhile, back on the reef, everything was business as usual, the 5 guest 2 guide dive group had the site to themselves and nobody even knew the blogger was gone.

We crossed a huge sand flat where Nico was hoping to get us some big rays or sleeping white tips, but all we saw was endless trigger fish nests and super excited triggers darting all around us.

Pacific Ocean Diving Gapow Reef Yap Micronesia

Two days ago in Goofnuw channel, Pat was engaged by a territorial trigger fish and found herself in it’s crosshairs. Brian saw the whole thing go down and went through about 400 psi laughing at her. After hearing that story at the bar, I went up close to Nico and Jim then flipped my camera to video so I could catch a trigger fish attack and share it here. Today wasn’t the day I filmed a wildlife comedy show.

The water was excellent and the reef’s weather was perfect for a dive party of 8.

Gapow Reef Yap Micronesia

Yap Divers Underwater Gapow Reef, MicronesiaYap Divers Underwater Gapow Reef, Micronesia
White tip reef shark, Gapow Reef Yap Micronesia

The worst part about the day, aside from the obvious, was heading back to the surface. The last moments underwater had a white tip cruising underneath my safety stop then shortly after that the world turned mono-color and wet again.

Raining in YapThankfully, safe harbor, warm showers and cold micro-brew are just a few minutes away from the dive sites. Short boat rides were appreciated by all today. This is what it looked like when I surfaced.d

Bill said the island received 2 inches of rain this morning. It was definitely a wet one, the place to be was at 60 feet, with a full tank.

The group went out again for a third tank after we returned and had a great dive at Slow n Easy. The only thing to do today, was dive.

One thing about being at a resort with small groups is that everyone hangs out, cuts loose a bit and gets to know each other. Bill’s op is a fun place to be, even when the surface weather sucks. It rained so much, the rinse tanks were cascading onto the gravel and the water was still the warmest place to be.

Rinse Tank Safety Stop

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Jim Reilly
Jim Reilly
11:27 21 Mar 18
We stayed at the hotel and dove with Manta Ray divers in early December 2017. The hotel is very comfortable, well run and staffed with wonderful employees. During our visit my wife came down with an illness and the consideration and support from the hotel and dive staff could not have been better.read more
Sandy Stinson
Sandy Stinson
16:03 03 Mar 18
The staff couldn't be more friendly and accommodating. Food is good, (worth upgrading to include all meals). Diving is good too.read more
Alex Divinsky
Alex Divinsky
17:24 01 Jan 18
The best place to stay in Yap. The resort is really nice and clean, the scuba diving is great, and the docked ship that houses the bar, restaurant, and movie screen is very cool. I really enjoyed my stay here.read more
ASALI
ASALI
10:44 01 Jan 18
Offers one of the best accommodation service. It also has a uniquely designed restaurant.
Yi-Hsin Lin
Yi-Hsin Lin
00:53 21 Feb 17
The whole place centers around the scuba diving operation. Probably better to find somewhere else if you're not a diver. The dive operation was generally good, but a little too laid back - schedules weren't always clear, and sometimes would change without any notice. Sometimes it was hard to tell if this was really because of changing tides/weather or because of the island pace of life. Pizza is a surprisingly good option at the restaurant.read more
William Myers
William Myers
21:01 21 Jul 18
Great hotel. Have stayed twice.
Emily Caquelin
Emily Caquelin
04:10 02 Aug 18
Manta Ray Bay Resort is a great dive resort with extremely hospitable staff.
Daniel Granzer
Daniel Granzer
11:40 23 Aug 18
We were from 11.08 to 18.08 at the Manta Ray Bay resort and had unforgettable days there 😍In total we made 12 dives with wonderful encounters. Highlights were, of course, the manta rays in the Goofnuw Channel and many white tip reef sharks in the Shark City 🦈 But also we saw eagle rays, turtles 🐢 and buffalo head parrotfish. The hotel is beautiful and the whole team does a great job there. The food on the ship Mnuw, as well as the home-brewed beer are excellent. Thank you again to the whole team of Manta Ray Bay Resort and Yap Divers 👏🏼We also did a one-day land tour to explore the many beautiful places of this unique island. The beach is like in paradise🏝, stone money and relics from the second world war very worth to see! You find there also culturally typical houses with different meaning and use! It would be nice if more visitors would come to this great island and appreciate the great work that is done there! Anyway, we really enjoyed it and would come back anytime 🙏🏻✌🏼read more
Jonathan Gapith
Jonathan Gapith
10:31 19 Sep 18
Best dive resort around, amazingly friendly staff and great food on the mnuw
Rene Sten
Rene Sten
04:06 12 Oct 18
Bill and his family run a great dive resort, rooms are spacious and comfortable. Restaurant and bar provide good range of food and drink. Bill and his dive guides know the reef intimately and the diving is spectacular. Bill and his family make for a very friendly and rewarding experience in Yap.read more
Ms. Malinda
Ms. Malinda
13:52 14 Oct 18
Great place to stay while visiting the island. Lots of activities to do with places to see & people to meet.read more
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