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Thread: Philippine CCR Wreck Diving-Coron Bay etc.

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    RBW Member Amarok will become famous soon enough Amarok will become famous soon enough Amarok will become famous soon enough Amarok will become famous soon enough Amarok's Avatar
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    Philippine CCR Wreck Diving-Coron Bay etc.

    Further to Matt's report the following other details may be useful to people planning to visit the wrecks out of Coron itself or Sangat.

    Gear and Spares

    Matt and I were both using Megs ( mine with a regular size can, Matt's with a movie Meg).As spare parts in the region are non existent we took a collective bunch of critical parts in case something blew - cells, batteries, solenoid, Golem BOV spares, 02 hoses, spare scrubber, spare valves, o-ring kits, spare mouthpiece, spare ADV and flow stops. We also took a minimal set of tools including needle-nose pliers. We only had two minor problems with the units over the three weeks (a broken flow-stop and a leak through the 02 head connector, both easily fixed). The spares were more of a "what-if /safety blanket" kit.

    Flights from Manila & excess Baggage

    Various flights available - we used PAL Express as they seemed more efficient. Baggage allowance was 10.0kg only per person. Flight to Busuanga leaves at 0845 from the domestic terminal - suggest checking in early (we got there at 0630) so ticketing staff are not stressed and can sort of guarantee your bags on (otherwise there may be a couple of days wait). Airport security did check the tanks in our bags - take the valves off. PAL does accept Credit Cards in Manila for any outbound charges HOWEVER it is cash only for any charges out of Busuanga. (as of mid July 2008).

    Flight was on a Dash 8-300 - very clean. They did not weigh our carry on but they did limit it to one piece.

    Coron City:

    As noted in Matt's report there is a single man chamber @ SeaDive's facility at the back of their fill station. Despite its looks it does work (from personal experience) and if you do have the unfortunate circumstances to have to use it Jenyson Sialana is the local Recompression Chamber Operator. Payment terms are cash but I think you can work something out with CC's with Seadive then submit bill to DAN. A table 6 will run you about P17-18,000. (See separate post).

    From the limited time we were in Coron the prices are reasonable, stores have variety and it’s a transit hub for banka boats to other destinations.

    Rebreather Diving in Coron/ Palawan Area.

    The operators are not currently set up for this though Sangat Island is trying to get somewhat rebreather friendly and we gave some suggestions to both Andy and JoJo about what they could consider. Any individual or group needs to be self sufficient or ship in supplies ahead e.g. Sorb, Helium etc.

    Andy was talking about bringing in some tanks for use as either B.O. or onboard (40 and 19 cbft DIN) and a booster but whether this will happen in the near future we don’t know - at least the intent or will is there. There is a need for change tables and for a source of fresh water for cleaning the units. The current setup would be pushed to handle a number of rebreather divers however there was talk of using a bigger boat when the group goes in October. I think we were somewhat of an oddity and an "add-on" to their usual line of business of single tank recreational OW training and wreck diving. Guiding was non existant and we were left to our own dive plans and bottom times. As there are no bubbles telling the boat operator to look out for SMB's was essential.

    Assistance on and off the boats was good, the banka's had shade otherwise the boats were open and able to handle, at most, 4 CCR divers. The ladders were two rungs too short when we were there and are going to be lengthened.

    Sorb prices are exorbitant….At Sangat we took the units to our rooms at night as there really isn’t any secure storage away from inquisitive eyes or fingers. Humidity was a problem when we were there especially in keeping moisture off the cells when not using the units. There was talk of building a gear up station/hut but this would depend on demand.

    Diving - viz was limited but the wrecks are close to Sangat (10-30 minutes max) versus up to an hour from Coron City. Bring and wear gloves and hoods also bring your own stage rigging. There are some deeper wrecks and aircraft in the area however these are still being researched.

    Accommodation:

    Peaceful, rustic and basic. ("early Koh Tao"). Bring battery powered or rechargeable music system. Mosquito coils a must, pick up some "treats" in Coron.

    Over all a real experience and if you are prepared to look after yourselves be self sufficient, roll with the bunches, be flexible and not expect a pampered tour you will be fine.

    Would I go back - probably yes but on a live-aboard as we originally had intended (Rags 2 out of Puerto Galera). If anyone wants any specific details feel free to PM either Matt or myself.

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    Dude Andy M has a spectacular aura about Andy M has a spectacular aura about Andy M has a spectacular aura about Andy M has a spectacular aura about Andy M has a spectacular aura about Andy M's Avatar
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    Re: Philippine CCR Wreck Diving-Coron Bay etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by Amarok  View Original Post
    Jenyson Sialana is the local Recompression Chamber Operator. Payment terms are cash but I think you can work something out with CC's with Seadive then submit bill to DAN. A table 6 will run you about P17-18,000. (See separate post).
    So in Coron, its cheaper to get bent several times over than it is to buy a single bucket of sorb? That is so wrong! Everywhere else in the world you can buy loads and loads of sorb for the price of getting bent once!

    Nice trip report. thanks for posting.

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    RBW Member graham_hk is a jewel in the rough graham_hk is a jewel in the rough graham_hk is a jewel in the rough graham_hk is a jewel in the rough graham_hk is a jewel in the rough graham_hk is a jewel in the rough graham_hk is a jewel in the rough graham_hk is a jewel in the rough graham_hk's Avatar
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    Re: Philippine CCR Wreck Diving-Coron Bay etc.

    Best way to dive Coron is on Rags II run by Frank Doyle (http://www.dive-safari.com/ seems to be down but La Laguna Beach Club and Dive Centre, Puerto Galera, Philippines has some details). Sorb still expensive but you get a proper floating dive shop for 8 technical divers.

    Graham

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    RBW Member Amarok will become famous soon enough Amarok will become famous soon enough Amarok will become famous soon enough Amarok will become famous soon enough Amarok's Avatar
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    Re: Philippine CCR Wreck Diving-Coron Bay etc.

    [quote=graham_hk;200548]Best way to dive Coron is on Rags II you get a proper floating dive shop for 8 technical divers.]


    Totally agree, using Rags 2 from PG was our original plan but we couldnt get enough interest to justify daily charter costs for 7 days. You could also combine trip down from PG with a stop at the Mactan Ferry wreck plus the outer wrecks and other marks at Coron. Sam says its the ideal unit with booster, helium etc and it could be used in combination with staying on shore. Way more flexibility....

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