Blue spotted klipfish

Dive sites: Tivoli Pinnacles

Tivoli Reef near Roman Rock
Tivoli Reef near Roman Rock

This is a recently discovered site near Roman Rock, named Tivoli Pinnacles because of its position east of Roman Rock (as Tivoli is east of Rome). It’s a very short boat ride straight out to sea from Long Beach, and the site is very close to the approach lanes for Simon’s Town Harbour.

The reef has a low, rocky relief
The reef has a low, rocky relief

We started our dive on top of one of the southern pinnacles, and drifted with the current, spending most of the dive at about 18-20 metres. The relief is quite flat away from the pinnacles, but there is a lot to see.

A smooth horsefish, trying not to be noticed
A smooth horsefish, trying not to be noticed

Tony found a horsefish, resting in a gap in the rocks, Andrew found an evil eye puffer fish for me to photograph, and I spotted a wide array of nudibranchs – mostly silvertip, crowned and gas flame.

This was a very easy dive in the conditions we did it in. There are ample opportunities to stop and examine the reef as you pass over it, and the depth is relatively constant. It was my second dive of the day and I actually went properly into deco… During the six minute deco/safety stop that my dive computer demanded a large and friendly seal frolicked around us. When we surfaced, he was leaping about next to the boat.

Grant had received a call that there was a large pod of dolphins off Kalk Bay harbour, probably feeding, so we followed the massive flock of cormorants north, and drove past the pod. There were maybe 500 long beaked common dolphins all together, including a lot of very tiny calves. It was beautiful.

Dive date: 5 June 2011

Air temperature: 23 degrees

Water temperature: 15 degrees

Maximum depth: 21.9 metres

Visibility: 10 metres

Dive duration: 42 minutes

Seal at the safety stop
Seal at the safety stop
Common long beaked dolphins on the surface
Common long beaked dolphins on the surface

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Clare

Lapsed mathematician, creator of order, formulator of hypotheses. Lover of the ocean, being outdoors, the bush, reading, photography, travelling (especially in Africa) and road trips.

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