Michael McFadyen's Scuba Diving Web Site
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Noel Hitchins 1951-2005
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Our Yachting Adventures
Below is a list of links to the main pages about our yacht, Catlypso and our Our Yachting Adventures:
  • Purchase of Catlypso
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  • Our Yachting Adventures.
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    Michael and Kelly's 4WD Trips
    Click here for a list of our Four Wheel Drive and Camping Trips.
    Current Kareela Weather
    A summary of the current weather conditions at our house at Kareela, Sydney, is below. Click here for more Detailed Diving Weather and Conditions. Weather from Michael McFadyen's Tempe Weather Station


    Conditions at
    23:49 on 23/1/17

     
    Temperature 25.6°C
    Humidity 65.0%
    Barometer 1003.4hPa
    Rate -0.3hPa/hr
    Wind Speed: 0 km/hr
    Wind Direction S
    Rainfall for Today 0.0mm
    Rainfall last hour 0.0 mm
    Rainfall last 24 hours 0.0 mm
    Rainfall at Start of Month 814.6 mm
    Rainfall this Year 827.0 mm
    Today's Extremes
    High Temperature 31.2°C at 15:48
    Low Temperature 20.9°C at 6:27
    Peak Wind Gust 0km/hr at 0:00
    Weather from Michael McFadyen's Kirrawee Weather Station
    Yesterday's Extremes
    High Temperature 27.5°C at 17:11
    Low Temperature 19.8°C at 6:29
    Rainfall at Start of Yesterday 827.0 mm
    Rainfall at End of Yesterday 827.0 mm
    Weather from Michael McFadyen's Tempe Weather Station
    Astronomical Data
    Sunrise 5:06
    Sunset 19:05
    Moonrise 1:09
    Moonset 15:04

    Home Brewing
    Click here for an article about Home Brewing.
    Sydney Dive Site Hints
    "SS Annie M Miller was discovered by Rick Latimer and Peter Harper"
    Government Wharf, Fingal Head
    Michael McFadyen's Scuba Diving - Government Wharf, Fingal Head Fingal Head is really an island that is sometimes connected to the mainland by a sand spit. It is located about three kilometres south of the entry to Port Stephens. On the north side of the island was the old government wharf which was presumably used to reprovision the Point Stephens Lighthouse which is on Fingal Head. It is located in a small bay to the west of the main head.

    From Port Stephens head to the south to GPS Reading of 32° 44' 31.6"S 152° 11' 38.5"E (using datum AUS66 - see my GPS Page for more details). Run in towards the shore till you pick up the reef on your depth sounder. Drop anchor here.

    You will see that you are in a sort of small bay. The wharf used to run from the head of the bay out into the sea. Drop to the bottom of the anchor where the depth will be about 9 to 10 metres. From the anchor, head east along the reef edge. Along here you will see a number of huge timber piles from the old wharf. In spring, you will also see dozens of Port Jackson sharks in this area (and elsewhere on the dive). You will also see dozens of Port Jackson eggs, more than I have ever seen at any location.

    After about 20 metres the reef turns north for about 30 metres and then it turns east again. All along this section look for flatheads on the sand and if you are lucky, you may see a red indianfish. I saw one here in October 2006. The depth increases to about 12 and then almost 14 metres.

    Timber pileNudibranch
    One of the timber piles from the old wharfA nudibranch I found at this site

    You may also see fiddler rays (I have seen three) and wobbegongs.

    Head back along your outward path back to the anchor. On the reef you may also see moray eels. Go past the anchor to the west and look for more of the same species. The rocks are also home to lots of interesting nudibranchs. The depth will come up to about eight metres.

    Red indianfishMoray eel
    A red indianfish I found here in October 2006One of the numerous moray eels seen here

    When you are running short of bottom time or air, return to the anchor. Once there, head south onto the reef and spend at least 10 minutes in the four to five metres area. There is excellent fishlife here, lots of luderick, bream, ladder-finned pomfret, butterfish and more.

    Due to the shallow nature of the site, you can spend a long time diving here, even as a second dive. Worth doing.

    Copyright © Michael McFadyen 1990 to 2017
    Non-commercial use of an article or photograph is permitted with appropriate URL reference to this site.
    Dive shops, dive operators, publications and government departments cannot use anything without first seeking and receiving approval from Michael McFadyen.
    This web site has been wholly thought up, designed, constructed and funded by Michael McFadyen
    without any help from the Australian Dive Industry since 1996!