Truk Lagoon – January 2013

Truk Lagoon. To experienced divers it arguably represents the best wreck diving location on the planet, to the uninitiated the name more often than not elicits a ‘where is that?’ response, with no appreciation of the significance as to what happened there in February 1944. Mention Pearl Harbour however, and those same people tend to acknowledge their understanding of it’s location and historical importance.

I admit to having been in the ‘latter’ category, even after taking up diving and joining BUDC with Jacqui some four years ago, however the ‘knowledge gap’ was soon filled by club mates who had made the trip and thereafter Truk became a ‘bucket list’ destination to hopefully visit one day.  Fast-forward four years to January / February 2013, sitting between my 50th birthday in 2012 and Jacqui’s in 2013. The ideal opportunity to realize the dream, aided of course by both of us attaining our Dive Leader qualification.  The mention of our plans to fellow club members clearly aligned with aspirations of certain individuals, so by the time we made the trip, following in the footsteps and bubbles of the Hubbards and Stones, our Group had become ten!

With Jacqui having taken advice from the Hubbards and Stones ‘pioneers’ in terms of who had organized their trip, our arrangements were likewise booked with Scuba Travel, with Jacqui volunteering and admirably managing all communications, cash collection and payment. 

Christmas and New Years came and went, which meant that our trip of a lifetime very quickly became reality and with snow on the ground, impacting on certain flights in and out of Heathrow, the ‘Truk gang’ met up at Heathrow Terminal 3 on Tuesday 22nd January to commence our journey to effectively the other side of the world.

A quick mention of the ‘gang’:


Jacqui Mudie – AKA Jacqui O (Travel organizer extraordinaire)

Steve Mudie  – AKA Scuba Steve

Julian Avis  – AKA ‘Slim’, together with FJ, forming the duo Fat Boy Slim!

Paul Clunas – AKA FJ, AKA Bear Grylls & other aliases during the trip

Dave Whitcher – AKA Davida, as one of his travel documents confirmed

Kirstin Dwyer – AKA Bendy Wendy, on account of painful experience

Alan Sedgewick – AKA Waldorf (from the Muppets)

Norman Lamb – AKA Statler (from The Muppets). Waldorf’s side kick!

George Mitchell


The high spirits within the Group were with us from the moment we hit the bar in T3 until we landed back at Heathrow on 8th February!  So a quick rundown of the itinerary:

Tues 22-01-13

Meet at Heathrow T3 for Cathy Pacific flight to Hong Kong

Wed 23-01-13

Arrive Hong Kong, connecting flight to Manila. Very tight on time however lovely lady from Cathy Pacific got us through!

Thurs 24-01-13

Arrive Manila, transfer through “Madsville traffic’ to Hotel xxx

Thurs 24-01-13

Walk from hotel in search of dinner. Found suitable restaurant serving good local food and doing deals on six bottles of beer at a time

Fri 25-01-13

Site seeing trip around Manila, taking in sights, sounds and culture. The president is Corie Acquino’s son! Back in time to collect luggage and transfer back to Manila airport for next leg of the journey

Fri 25-01-13

United Airlines flight to Guam (won’t see anything about security checks and queuing!) A few hours to kill at Guam, assisted by some beer and a lock-in at the airport pub, before boarding final flight to Truk

Fri 25-01-13

Flew in to Truk (Meon Island), coach ride transfer on the whole road under construction. Humpety Bumpety! Arrived at Blue Lagoon Resort some four days after leaving cold, snowy England to circa 30 degrees C warm sun. Marvelous! 

The resort felt strangely familiar with the flowing palm trees and very close proximity to the Pacific Ocean, attributable to Bryan and Tracey’s photos from their trip to Truk with Andrew and Jenny in December 2008.

We all settled in quickly and the place really did become home from home to all of us pretty much straight away, with the staff all very welcoming and friendly, which became a feature of our stay throughout the entire holiday.

We collectively made the decision that as a result of the long journey and it’s undoubted impact upon our bodies, we would not dive that afternoon and would start fresh the following morning.  After settling in to our (air conditioned) apartments, we took the short walk over to the Dive Centre to become acquainted with the set-up, to meet our Chuuk dive guides and of course the necessary form filling that accompanies all dive holidays. We were then issued with our Chuuk Dive Permits.

The daily routine for the two weeks we were in Chuuk could easily be summarized as follows:

06:30 – 07:30

Breakfast. FJ had organized a nice big table for ten in the restaurant for the duration of our time at the resort. Wide choice of breakfast dishes to cater for all tastes, which were indeed varied!


Get our gear together and off for first dive of the day. After second day, our routine changed to one dive in the morning and long surface interval


Lunch for those who needed it!


Off for two afternoon dives


Dinner in the restaurant. Wide choice of dishes

20:00 – 21:00

All shattered and off to bed!

Of course there were variations on a theme to the routine, with increased visits to the bar before and sometimes after dinner!

We were assigned two dive boats for our exclusive use during the entire eleven days of diving, with the same crew on each. The split of our Group on the two boats settled down as:

Boat 1 – Dive leader Nic, piloted by Rendall (UK spelling) with FJ, Jules, Steve and Jac as the divers.

Boat 2 – Dive leader Estos, piloted by ?? with Alan, Norman, Dave, Kirstin, George and Marie as the divers.

 Dive Reports,  Photos


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