Yap Status Report

We’ve had some excellent weather and dive conditions recently resulting in solid photo ops around the island. These are my lastest snaps from the past couple of weeks from 6-8 dives. Right now is a good time to be in the water and to get in on all of this. Here’s what it looks like today and what’s going on…

Spotted Eagle Ray - Diving "Eagle's Nest", photo by Brad Holland

Outer Reef Drift - Diving "Land's End", photo by: Brad Holland

Early summer means a couple of things; the trade winds have died down and the Mantas are done mating.

The whole island’s dive map is on the radar now and we’re getting into a lot of life out in the water.

Sharks, mantas, turtles, rays, macro reef life, eels and big fish in triple digit visibility every time we step outside the reef or hit the channels right.

Down at the southern tip of the reef, on the Pacific Ocean side is one of the best dive sites going right now.

Carpet Anemone

A few of us have been hitting it every chance we get and bringing back rich dive reports.

Land’s End and Eagle’s Nest are the two most southern sites on this side of the island. When the current pumps the life comes out and we go on 3-4 knot ripping safari dives with more to see than you can take in all at once. Looking out to the blue at huge schools of barracuda or look into the reef at hovering Eagle Rays, giant Grouper and strafing sharks.

Grey Reef Shark - Diving "Vertigo", photo by: Brad Holland

Green Sea Turtle - Diving "M'il Channel", photo by: Brad Holland

Three out of the Four times we’ve done this over the last couple of weeks have produced the highest quality dives outside of the ever-rich Vertigo and Stammtisch where you rub elbows with reef sharks and manta rays with daily consistency.

The trick is finding the current, the more current the more life… at the end of the drift you hit an eddy where two distinct water temperatures collide in an vortex of fish schools, rays and reef sharks in clear water. We’ve been practicing down there to get things right for this summer’s diving.

Open Water Manta Pass - Diving "M'il Channel", photo by: Brad Holland

When the current pumps too hard, the ride ends in less than half an hour… not enough current and it’s a mile-long kick.

Yesterday we covered two dive sites and popped up a hundred yards from the Caverns mooring, when we get this right, we’ll be able to drop in and ride the reef across two dive sites and kick out of the current’s eddy to hook up with our boat at the Caverns amphitheater.

A little bit of dive R&D has been going on over here with a strong spirit of fun.

Waking up sleeping White Tips - Diving "Yap Caverns", photo by: Brad Holland

If you aren’t taken to Eagle’s Nest, tell your dive guide and schedule the boat for a low tide roll in. Everybody goes to Stammtisch and Vertigo and you won’t miss the Caverns… but there’s some sites out here that are must-do’s during your stay and the southern tip has a couple of them.

Yap's Southern Reef - Diving "Lion Fish Wall", photo by: Brad HollandA few of our recent guests were from Kangaroo Island, Australia who are sea urchin divers. Professional divers are one thing, professional divers from Australia are another.

They dive in cold water, low/no-vis and have to have a cage around them to keep from being picked off by a Great White.

Those guests went on a ripping current ride through the wildlife safari and asked why it wasn’t the first dive they were taken on – they called it “An aquarium on a conveyor belt…

Along with the recent reef rides, we have been moving shark bait around the island with mixed results and taking a bottle with us on every trip.

The shark action has been amplified, last week, along with typical Vertigo, we had a huge leopard shark in M’il Channel that was one-third tail, we were passed by six feet of shark and over three feet of shark tail.

When you hit M’il with the tide you can get three dives sites out of one tank. We drifted from the clear blue at Yap Corner all the way passed the ridge deep inside the lagoon. We had eagle rays passing mantas, schools of jacks, sharks and a grouper bigger than the blogger at the reef bottom on our way through M’il.

Yesterday I woke up a big nurse shark at the end of our dive down south, my first one seen in Yap.

Hawksbill Turtle - Diving "Eagle's Nest", photo by: Brad Holland

All of the recent action has been nice, a lot of young turtles are seen doing whatever turtles do out on the reef as well as a full presence of reef fish.

We have some busy weeks coming up, this weekend; the Scuba Diver Girls arrive for a week-long custom dive party and after that Kid’s Sea Camp lands from Palau for a week of family adventure.

In July, we have some guests who chartered Popou for a three-day outer island wreck dive adventure to Ulithi atoll. Yap summer is off to a strong start.

Big Nurse Shark - Diving "Eagle's Nest", photo by: Brad Holland

 


Getting Here

IMG_7745People still ask when the best time to be here is, there’s always good options year round.

Right  now, this is what the diving looks like – there’s still mantas being cleaned at Stammtisch and schooling sharks at Vertigo.

Bill’s still booking travel saving you the headache and the possibility of missing out on that less expensive flight, shorter layover or more direct line to Yap: bill@mantaray.com.

Photos by: Brad Holland | facebook.com/bradlifestyle

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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
Jan Toman
Jan Toman
22:14 02 Nov 18
Great! GREAT! GREAT! Lovely place, lovely staff, great location for divers!
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