Take a look at our dive reports from October 2019! We’ve detailed what we saw, the temperature and visibility, and surface conditions of the Solitary Islands in Coffs Harbour in October 2019.

Dive Reports October 2019 – Table of Contents:


We had 2Wild full of keen divers this morning as we ventured out to South Solitary Island!!
Dive one the Advanced Open Water Divers got in at Manta Arch where they completed their Deep Dive amongst the Grey Nurse Sharks in 30m of water, we had a few Black Cod around, Moray Eels and some schools of Travelly near the Arch itself.
Dive two was at Shark Gutters where we had a Navigation dive happening and some Open Water Students completing dive two of their course. There was plenty of action in and around cleaner cave with Grey Nurse Sharks, Bullrays, Sweep, Turtles, Flutemouth Fish, Blue Tangs, and a very cute little Orangutan Crab in Shark Gutters.
Congratulations to Merelyn who finished her PADI Scuba Diver Course today!!!

Conditions Report:
  • Temperature: 18°C-19°C
  • Visibility: 25m

Dive Report by Lindsay

Grey Nurse Sharks Manta Arch South Solitary Island
Grey Nurse Sharks Manta Arch South Solitary Island by Jetty Dive

Grey Nurse Shark - South Solitary Island 2019
Grey Nurse Shark – South Solitary Island 2019

2nd October 2019 – Certified PADI Open Water Divers

We had 2Wild maxed out today with 16 people on board ready to get amongst the beautiful visibility we have at the moment!!
The surface conditions today were a little sloppy so everyone jumped in for dive one at Shark Gutters with a welcoming 8-12 Grey Nurse Sharks throughout the top end. We had a few Black Cod around Cleaner Station and a Mantis Shrimp in the third gutter.
Once everyone enjoyed the Soup, Tea and Coffee during the surface interval we hopped back in at Shark Gutters and made our way down to The Gantry, we had some big schools of Sweep, Tarwhine and Bullseyes. When arriving we seen lots of Turtles, Blue Tangs, and a couple of Eagle Rays.
Congratulations to Yvette, Catriona, Lukas and Dylan who finished their Open Water Course today and got up close with some Grey Nurse Sharks.

Conditions Report:
  • Temperature: 18°C – 19°C
  • Visibility: 20m-28m

Dive Report by Lindsay

4th October 2019 – Blue Water at South Solitary Island

This mornings trip to South Solitary Island was a little bumpy and a bit slow going but once we arrived we were welcomed with the beautiful, blue 25m visibility!!
Dive one was at the southern end of the island to get away from the NE wind, our divers had a good look around Buchanan’s Wall, Cable Trail and Archies Cave. There was plenty to see with Black Cod, Stingrays and plenty of Nudibranchs.
Dive two we dealt with the lumpy NE chop and got in up the northern end where the conditions under water were amazing!!! We had Octopus, Green Sea Turtles, Angle Fish, Orangutan Crabs in Shark Gutters, Black Cod, Nudibranchs and 8-12 Grey Nurse Sharks in the Cleaner Station cave/gutter.

Conditions Report:
  • Temperature: 18°c-19°c
  • Visibility: 15m-25m

Dive Report by Lindsay

Grey Nurse Shark in the back gutter
Grey Nurse Shark in the back gutter

Barney the Loggerhead turtle in mid water
Barney Loggerhead turtle

6th October 2019 – Great Vis At South Solitary Island

After a smooth trip out to South Solitary Island, the Advanced divers dropped in at Manta Arch and made their way to Cleaner Station, and the other two groups dropped in at Cleaner.
All the divers saw Grey Nurse Sharks around the Arch, and also hanging around Cleaner Station. Eagle Rays were sighted, schools of Tarwhine, Silver Trevally, Batfish, Black Cod, and one group of divers got up close with Barney the Loggerhead Turtle.

After morning tea all the divers dropped in again at Cleaner and drifted round to South Boulder. A couple of juvenile Grey Nurse Sharks were protecting the entrance to the Cleaner Station Cave, a few Wobbegong Sharks were moving around instead of sitting on the bottom.
A number of Nudibranchs, a few Slipper Lobsters and big schools of Bullseyes and Sweep, were everywhere down the Wall.

Conditions Report:
  • Temperature: 19°C
  • Visibility: 20m

Dive Report by Lindsay

8th October 2019 – South Solitary Island Marine Life Abundance

The northern end of South Solitary Island was the pick for today’s dives to keep away from the southerly wind.
Dive one had everyone in at Manta Arch, we had a couple Grey Nurse Sharks, huge Black Cod, Lionfish and a shy little Mantis Shrimp.
Dive two we moved around to Shark Gutters and stayed there as this was the calmest spot. While we had a Navigation dive happening as part of the Advanced Open Water Course the certified divers were exploring the top end to its potential, just a few things spotted were… Grey Nurse Sharks, Bullrays, seven different Nudibrachs, Orangutan Crabs are still here!!! Wobbegongs, Green Sea Turtles and a Travelly in Cleaner Station Cave.

Conditions Report:
  • Temperature: 18°C-19°C
  • Visibility: 10m-12m

Dive Report by Lindsay

Bull Ray, South Solitary Island by Jetty Dive
Bull Ray, South Solitary Island (L Devery 2015)

Black Cod with diver behind it, open water behind the diver and a rock to the right
Black Cod with Sam at South Solitary Island

10th October 2019 – Grey nurse, eagle rays plus so much more!

Sheltered from the wind and swell, Shark Gutter’s at South Solitary Island was the perfect location for today’s dives. After a short swim from the mooring our divers came across a number of grey nurse sharks, a friendly green turtle and a squadron of eagle rays. The boulder wall was the place to be on dive two! More grey nurse, black cod, schools of tarwhine and trevally plus “Barney” the loggerhead were the highlights on this dive.
Congratulations to Luke, Julian and Jade on completing your PADI Open Water course and Connor on completing your PADI Advanced Open Water course today.

Conditions Report:
  • Temperature: 19°C
  • Visibility: 5m-8m

Dive Report by Mike

11th October 2019 – Sharks Galore At South Solitary Island

Today we found conditions had improved over night, with a calmer dive-site at South Solitary Island, all the divers dropped in at Shark Gutters  to see heaps of fish activity in the water. Along with half a dozen grey nurse sharks, we spotted a couple of Eagle rays, heaps of schooling fish Tarwhine, Bull eyes and Trevally, also one group of divers spotted a Orangutan Crab hiding in an Anemone.
After a short surface interval the divers descended down the same mooring line and made their way round to South Boulder Wall. More Grey nurse sharks were sighted, also spotted around North boulder wall were, Turtles, Black cod, Blue Fusiliers, and a lonely Octopus.
Congratulations to Danny and Riley on competing their Padi Open Water Course, also John on completing his Padi Scuba course.

Conditions Report:
  • Temperature: 19°C
  • Visibility: 15m

Dive Report by Mike

eagle ray swimming through water
Eagle Ray by Lisa

Slipper Lobster, South Solitary Island
Slipper Lobster (L Devery 2015)

12th October 2019 – Open Water Divers Love South Solitary Island

Today’s dives at South Solitary Island were awesome!!
We had some good visibility that varied from 12-18m, both dives today were up the northern end as this was the most protected area.
There was plenty to see all day with Nudibranchs, Slipper Lobsters, Mantis Shrimp, Grey Nurse Sharks, Bullrays, Sweeps, Tarwhine, Kingfish, Turtles and much more. The Open Water Students had a blast and were amazed by all the stuff they seen just off the Coffs Coast.
Congratulations to Pablo, Kat and Joel who all finished their PADI Open Water Course today!!!
Visibility 12-18m
Temp 18-19C

Conditions Report:
  • Temperature: 18°C-19°C
  • Visibility: 12m-18m

Dive Report by Lindsay


Today on the 16th October 2019 our first dive was at Buchannans Wall and our second at Shark Gutters to south wall. There was plenty to see on both dives!
At Buchannans Wall we spotted turtles, black cod, and schools of BullsEyes, and Sweep.
We had a short surface interval, and morning tea, after which we ventured up to the top end of the island. It was here we did a drift dive from Shark Gutters to South Boulder. On this dive, our divers were greeted with more than twelve grey nurse sharks. When we got to North Boulder Wall, we could barely even see it due to the huge amounts of schooling fish. We had Blue Fusilier fish, Bull Rays, and a couple of eagle rays swam by.
Overall a great dive for all!

Conditions Report:
  • Temperature: 19°C
  • Visibility: 20m-25m

Dive Report by Mike

Schooling various Fish Life at Boulder Wall, South Solitary Island by Jetty Dive
Fish Life at Boulder Wall, South Solitary Island by Jetty Dive

19th October 2019 - Rescue Course Divers in pool
19th October 2019 – Rescue Course Divers in pool

19th October 2019 – Saturday Sharks & Rescue in Training

On our dive today, 19th October 2019, we had a very pleasant trip out to the islands with beautiful calm conditions. Our dive sites for the day were based at and around Shark Gutters.
After all of our divers dropped in at Shark Gutters for the first dive. We dived near Cleaner Cave, where we found three juvenile Grey Nurse Sharks circling around, also schools of tawhine and silver trevalley.
We took our regular 60 min surface interval and snack break before heading down for our second dive.
For our second dive, it was decided we did a drift dive from Shark Gutters to South Boulder. Our certified divers made their way all the way around to the gantry! We spotted three adult Grey Nurses here, around North Boulder Wall. We also saw some black cod, eagle rays, and some turtles.
Overall today there was plenty to see, and everybody had a great Saturday dive. Congratulations to our newest PADI Open Water Certified diver Deniz, and PADI Scuba Diver Tristan!
Back at the Dive Shop, we had four divers signed up for our PADI Rescue Course! They completed their theory this morning, and after passing exams they made their way to the Olympic Pool for their pool skills for the rescue course.  Our picture on today’s post is from the pool session! Tomorrow our Rescue divers will be making their way to the ocean to complete their course and get certified.

Conditions Report:
  • Temperature: 19°C
  • Visibility: 20m

Dive Report by Mike

20th October 2019 – Muttonbird Island Rescue Course

That’s a wrap!! The PADI Rescue Diver Course is complete and everyone had an absolute blast.
Plenty of laughs and lots of learning
Congratulations to Kendal, Josh, Jarred, Michael and Connor who all become certified today!!
Photos are from today’s Rescue adventures at Muttonbird Island.
Visibility – 2-5m
Temp – 19C

Conditions Report:
  • Temperature: 19°C
  • Visibility: 2m-5m

Dive Report by Lindsay

Rescue course divers on surface
Rescue course divers on surface

Nudibranch at South Solitary Island 23.10.19
Nudibranch at South Solitary Island 23.10.19

23rd Oct 2019 – Mid Week brings Nice Diving.

After pushing through the smoke we found South Solitary Island in clear air and what looked like Clean water. We were a little disappointed to find it wasn’t really clear as we entered the water at South Boulder Wall mooring. With a slight push against us we made our way along the Wall to Shark Gutters to find more fish in the shallows than deeper along the wall. Turtles and Wobbegongs along with some Nudibranchs including the huge Spanish Dancer in the picture.
Dive two started at Shark Gutters and a couple of Grey Nurse were finally spotted at Cleaner Station area. The plan was to move around to the Gantry and along the way at the gap was where we found 4 Turtles  and another at 2 at the Gantry. The Colour of the Blue Tangs (Dory’s) stood out well against the coral heads.
Congratulations to Joe and Beth for completing their PADI Open Water Diver with us at the Solitary Islands.

Conditions Report:
  • Temperature: 19°C
  • Visibility: 10m

Dive Report by Mike

28th OctOBER 2019- Finally out Diving after bad weather

After almost a week of bad weather, we finally got out to South Solitary with some reasonable conditions. Sea was a bit bumpy but nice and protected around the northern side of the island.
First Dive for the advanced divers was starting in Manta Arch, where we found a lonely Grey Nurse Shark with a Lionfish underneath, using her for shelter. Cruising through to Cleaner Station mooring we found another Nurse and then another again hiding in the Cave entrance of Cleaner gutter. A couple of Bull rays and more lionfish were also seen.
Dive two from Shark Gutters to South Boulder saw another Grey Nurse in the shelter of Shark Gutters as well as lots of fish on the Wall. Big Black Cod were also quite placid today as the divers swam by.
Pic by Rob in Shark Gutters with Jarad in the foreground
Vis 10 mtrs
Temp 19c

Conditions Report:
  • Temperature:
  • Visibility:

Dive Report by Mike

Grey Nurse at Shark Gutters South Solitary Island with diver in between gutters
Grey Nurse at Shark Gutters South Solitary Island (R Blackburn Oct 2019)

30th October 2019 Butterfly Fish
Butterfly Fish (D Slater 2019)

30th October 2019 – Pre- Halloween dives at South Solitary

This morning, 30th October 2019, upon leaving for our dives we had a bit of a choppy trip out. We made our way to South Solitary island. For our first dive we descended to Buchannons wall, and our second dive we drifted from Cleaner Station to South Boulder.
For dive one, we were protected from the wind at Buchannons wall. Our certified divers made their way down the wall, spotting lionfish, gunther’s butterflyfish (which our post image is of today – Thank you Dylan for that picture!) and a turtle! Our student divers also spotted a giant school of cow-nose rays.
After our standard surface interval we made our way to Cleaner station for our drift dive to South Boulder.  This dive was graced by the not-so-scary Grey Nurse Sharks. We saw at least 1/2 a dozen of them. There were also black cod,  orangutan crab, bull rays, schooling talwhine, and some wobbegong to seal the deal.
Congratulations to Dylan for completing his PADI Advanced Open Water Course today, Great job Dylan! Many congratulations to Peter, Judy, and Colina as well for the completion of their PADI Open Water Course!

Conditions Report:
  • Temperature: 19°C
  • Visibility: 10m

Dive Report by Mike

Where to find us.


Jetty Dive Centre Dive Shop is at 398 Harbour Drive, Coffs Harbour, NSW 2450. This is where you begin your experiences with us! All Scuba Dives and Snorkelling must check-in before moving to departure point.


All our boats leave from the Public floating pontoon wharf opposite the “Attitude Burgers “ building.

Jetty dive google maps with markers for priority locations