Thanks to Dirk, I had heard that it was in an interesting place to go dive at when in Australia. Since we had already been to the Great Barrier Reef (trip 1 and trip 2) as well as Heron Island.
So, Dirk, Linus, Jennifer and I booked a week at Lord Howe Island just after Linux.conf.au 2013 in Canberra where I spent a week (canberra's diving isn't known to be the best :) ).
Picture of diving are on the Diving at Lord Howe Island page.
Our first plane wasn't big, but still decent:
Our 2nd plane to the island, was a Dash 8-200, currently the only plane that can fly that distance and back on full tanks (in case it can't land and has to go back to Sydney).
the runway is just about 3000ft, enough for a small prop plane, but nothing else
We stayed at the Leanda Lei, all in all a nice place with one bedrooms, and the staff was as helpful as they could be. Unfortunately, the internet provider, clearnetworks.com.au, had failing equipment (router kept rebooting due to failing power supply according to my voltmeter) and couldn't be bothered to give a rat's ass and fix it durign the entire week. In the end, I wipped out one of my own wireless routers, and setup a wifi network that we were able to use for the rest of the week.
geeks getting much needed internet :)
Our one bedroom was nice:
Unfortunately, we arrived in the middle of not so good weather. It wasn't pouring rain, but the winds were very high and the better dive sites are in locations that you just can't dive when there is too much wind.
The first day, we just didn't dive at all (well, Linus and Dirk did, and saw very little due to stirred up water). Jennifer and I used the opportunity to go hike the island instead.
the island had big spiders everywhere
with surf like that, diving wasn't worth it
so we went climbing
got some nice views
Eventually we made it to the top of Malabar Hill:
And from there we hiked down to North Beach. It was filled with mutton birds that weren't very good at walking and flying in high wind :)
Later, we went to the gulch:
those birds were very funny :)
Unfortunately the island had a plane crash at night many years ago, it just clipped the top of the hill, and you can still see parts of the wreckage along the trail we took:
While Heron Island had more birds, there were plenty of fun birds to see on Lord Howe too:
Oh, right we were talking about diving.
I put this on the Diving at Lord Howe Island page.
Dirk and Linus had to leave 2 days earlier than us, so we had a self-assembled dinner together before they left:
And before we knew it, after 6 days of diving, it was over.
The last night, we signed up for 5 course sunset dinner at Pinetrees:
And the next morning, it was time to go back: