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Trip Reports


2019.05.18 PKSnorkelDay LD 03315

Experiencing Marine Reserves runs events from the Far North to Otago. Our trip reports showcase the highlights of each trip from the perspective of our volunteers. 


2020.02.15 Rakiura Adventure Snorkel

Brittle star

Rakiura Adventure Snorkel Trip Report

Saturday 15th of February 2020
Written by Nic Marshall

Images from the day

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Nic Marshall at Ulva island marine reserve

Today I was lucky enough to join Experiencing Marine Reserves and Stewart Island Adventures on a guided snorkelling trip. We started our trip in one of the most picturesque little beach huts I’ve ever seen. After the all of the equipment was handed out, Ollie and Johnny introduced us to Paterson inlet in a very educational and interesting brief.

They taught us how Paterson inlet is an incredible marine ecosystem and gave us great insight into the environment we were about to enter. They also informed us about the safety protocols which were in place, including a shark shield as a safeguard from the bigger fish in these waters. Once we were ready we headed out with Ulva Island Water Taxis to our spot for the swim. This place was incredible. I have spent several years free diving in many locations around New Zealand but this location was special. This marine reserve had an incredible eco system. The fish life was full and healthy. We saw blue moki, blue cod, trumpeter, spotties and heaps more. The kelp forest was thick and beautiful with a substantial amount of small organisms covering every inch of the rocks.

The trip was very well managed and everyone from beginners to more experienced divers were able to mould their personal experience to their level. We were also very fortunate to have a professional photographer that joined in from EMR. Lorna was highly skilled in underwater photography and seemed to be able to lug a very large camera under water without feeling intrusive. Her photos of the day came out beautifully. She also made sure that everyone felt comfortable with their photos being taken. Johnny, Ollie and Lorna were able to come together to create an amazing experience. No matter what your experience or your skill level I highly recommend joining them if you want to experience a truly healthy New Zealand ecosystem.


-- Written by Nic Marshall

In the bladder kelp Nic Marshall

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