This is a site that was mostly dived in the past on searches for wrecks of ships known to have sunk in the area after striking the reef. It might be dived to monitor the marine biodiversity of the area, but there are not many other reasons that come to mind. There are many reefs with more biodiversity and more spectacular topography within much easier reach of the popular launch sites.
- 1 Albatross Rock: S34°16.527' E018°22.210' — (Outer pinnacle)
This site is in the Table Mountain National Park Marine Protected Area since 2004. A permit is required.
The name "Albatross Rock" is the name for this area used on the SAN charts. The rock was named after a tug of the same name which was wrecked there.
Maximum depth is probably about 20 m. and the top of the pinnacle is specified on the charts, but is shallow enough to have been hit by several ships which then sank nearby, and it is charted as a navigational hazard. Some of wrecks have been found, and are occasionally dived. They are described in their own articles.
Visibility is likely to be better after a south easterly wind, and may exceed 10 m, but is more likely to be around 5 to 6 m.
Fairly rugged profile sandstone reef, mostly relatively flat on top, but with deeper gulleys and undercuts in deeper water. Sand bottom to gullies below about 12 m. Gullies appear to mostly run approximately north/south.
Geology: Ordovician sandstone of the Peninsula formation. Dip small, probably less than 10°. strike unclear, probably about east-west. jointing also unclear,but probably mostly north-south.
The site is exposed to wind and sea from the north west to south west, and should be dived only in fairly flat seas. The site is protected from south easterly seas, though it will catch the wind.
The site is most likely to be diveable in late spring and summer but there will be occasional opportunities at other times.
The site is only accessible by boat. It is 11.2 km from the slipway at the old crayfish factory north of Scarborough (Soetwater), about 17.1 km from the launch site at Kommetjie and 27.5 km from Hout Bay harbour slipway.
Fairly dense laminaria down to over 12 m, fair amount of red bait in small sizes, and heavy undergrowth of plocamium and other small red and brown algae. Hottentot seabream, shy sharks, and klipfish have been seen, and large numbers of West coast rock lobster.
Sponges at Albatross Rock
Juvenile rock lobster on a kelp holdfast
Noble coral and sponges at Albatross Rock
Macro photography is most likely to deliver acceptable results unless the visibility is unusually good, in which case wide angle natural light may produce good kelp forest studies.
No particular routes recommended
No site specific hazards known.
No special skills required.
No special equipment recommended.
Other regional dive sites: