Early Morning Snorkelling at Little Henty Reef

Hayley Point from the shallows at the southern end of Mounts Bay. (Photo taken on a previous snorkelling visit).

Clear ocean water at Marengo
Snorkellers preparing to swim at Marengo
Five ocean swimmers ready at 7am to go snorkelling.
Sunrise, calm sea and golden sand at Marengo
Weather and ocean conditions were perfect for snorkelling.
Snorkellers heading to the water on golden beach in sunlight
Entering the water less than an hour after sunrise.
Banjo shark or fiddler ray on seabed
During the swim out to the reef, in about 20 feet of water Michelle spotted what I incorrectly identified as a Port Jackson shark. On closer examination I can see that it’s a banjo shark (also known as fiddler ray). A cropped enlargement of the banjo shark and a photo I took of a Port Jackson shark on a nearby reef some time ago are immediately below. (The light makes them look different in these photos…my goggles were fogged…they look different at certain stages of their life…the Port Jackson shark is a master of disguise etc)
Underwater photo of snorkellers above marine plant life on reef
This shot was taken at the northern end of the reef. Those are the tips of my fins.
Underwater photo of snorkeller above marine plant life on reef
Mary gliding over the marine flora which flourishes around the full perimeter of this reef. The eastern (seaward) side of the reef is covered in bull kelp and the like.
Underwater photo of snorkellers above bull kelp on reef
Thriving bull kelp. Beach goers generally only see bull kelp after big seas have dislodged it from the reefs on which it grows and onshore winds have stacked it at the high tide mark. It’s a wonderful thing to see living bull kelp on this scale swaying with the movement of ocean. The snorkeller working her way through the kelp maze is Mary.
Underwater photo of snorkeller above marine plant life on reef
Susan swimming over rock slabs which form part of the reef (which is part of the Marengo Reefs Marine Sanctuary).
Underwater photo of snorkellers above bull kelp on reef
Mary on left of the image, and Boo adapting her stroke in shallow water over a stand of kelp.
Marengo beach from 250m out to sea
The northern tip of Little Henty Reef which we rounded before heading down the eastern side of the reef.
Underwater photo of snorkeller in shallow very clear water over reef
Susan gliding at low altitude in very clear water over the marine plant life on the edge of the reef.
Snorkeller over reef - underwater photo
Boo flying low and slow
Underwater photo of snorkeller over marine plant life
Michelle looking completely at ease.
Steep drop off on reef - underwater photography
Deeper water on the steep south-western edge of the reef
Snorkeller in clear water on reef
Michelle (in the foreground) and Mary
Snorkellers at reef 250m offshore at Marengo
Marengo and the southern end of Mounts Bay beach, viewed from a section of the reef about 250m offshore.
Snorkeller on reef - underwater photo
Deb working her way through the maze of reef and marine plants.
Injured stingray - underwater photography
A stingray, which appears to have suffered the loss of its tail and part of its rear fin. It appeared very mobile and agile, despite these severe injuries. A boat propeller could have caused this damage. I hope it survives. Michelle spotted it near the reef.
Snorkeller on reef - underwater photo
Michelle, wings outstretched.
Five snorkellers duck diving - underwater photography
Group duck-dive. L to R: Michelle, Boo, Susan, Deb and Mary. Lighting effects provided by the morning sun.
Snorkellers duck diving - underwater photography
L to R: Boo, Susan, Deb and Mary
Snorkellers duck diving - underwater photography
L to R: Michelle and Boo (drifting towards the surface), Deb (on surface patrol, creating a few horsepower with those flippers by the look of things) and Mary gliding by with no apparent effort.

Susan executing a graceful dive and low pass over the seabed

In the first photo, Boo is watching from the surface and Mary is relaxing underwater.

Over-under photo of snorkeller
Mary found this toy on the seabed some distance offshore.
Snorkellers floating 25 feet abve sandy seabed
Unidentified snorkellers drifting above the seabed between the angled columns of morning sunlight. Snorkelling like this does have a few things in common with flying.
Snorkeller moving fast on surface - underwater photography
Streamlined Susan going somewhere in a hurry, leaving a wake as she does so.

Deb in effortless flight

The sun’s rays appear to converge on Deb from all sides as she smoothly traces her underwater arc.

Snorkeller over seabed - underwater photography
Another unidentified swimmer going somewhere in a hurry.
Three friends after ocean reef snorkelling session near Apollo Bay
Boo, me and Susan.

10 thoughts on “Early Morning Snorkelling at Little Henty Reef

    1. Thanks for your company Boo. Weather and sea conditions were ideal. First time I’ve swum or snorkelled at Little Henty Reef without a current. That new snorkelling mask and snorkel of yours seemed to work very well.


  1. Special Thanks John. I love the Beautiful Snorkelling Scenes. I wish the Mary- was me I miss swimming in the Beautiful Water, so much. Congratulations John, Angus is ??? Today- My love to You and Liz Stay Safe and Well in These unusual Times. Mary XXOO

    Sent from my iPhone



    1. Hi Mary. Thanks for your comments. Glad you liked the snorkelling photos. Angus is 8 years old today. I hope you are fit and well and frequently catching up with friends and relations as always. Cheers, John.


  2. Hi John,

    Its good to see you out snorkelling on the reef. Its a beautiful reef with the right conditions.

    Are you using an iphone with a housing? I’m in the bay and will no doubt see you around sometime soon.

    Regards Tim

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Tim.

      Good to hear you are back in the bay. We should have a coffee soon.

      The reef is beautiful, but as you say, ‘in the right conditions’. Sunday’s snorkelling exercise was the first time I have swum there with no currents at all. Apart from the wind being very light and there being no swell to speak of, I think part of the explanation for the absence of currents on Sunday morning was that we snorkelled on a dodge tide. So for some hours either side of our swim the tide was neither rising nor falling. In such weather and sea conditions I think similar quality snorkelling conditions would exist on every safely accessible reef in the area.

      The photos were taken with my iPhone 8+ in an AxisGo waterproof housing. I have a dome port fitted which allows me to take a single shot of the scenery above and below the water.




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