Shot Gun Dive Site

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Shot Gun is a great reef dive site with some fantastic coral coverage that eventually form walls that are covered with a magnificent array of beautiful yellow corals. The dive site is also known as The Cauldron and is found in a channel between Gili Lawa Darat and Gili Lawa Laut. It is said to be one of the most amazing dive sites in the Komodo area because of the amazing corals and marine life.

The dive site is fairly shallow with a maximum depth of 30 metres. Visibility is fantastic and can reach 35 metres. Between April and November, the weather is more suitable for divers but it can be visited all year around. Divers should be aware of the strong currents in the dive site and should only dive here with the necessary dive skills to manage strong currents. In addition to this, the site forms a kind of bottleneck, and this creates even more current. The shape and speed of the current mean that the site can be very challenging and so only skilled divers should access this site. This current helps to give rise to the name of the dive site, as the speed of the drift dive is said to be like that of a firing shotgun. This type of dive is known as an adrenalin dive.

Where there are currents, there will always in pelagic fish and in between December and February in particular, divers will be able to spot manta rays. These come to feed amongst the strong current. The current also allows for many soft corals to grow including anemones, sponges, sea fans, and many other soft corals. Divers should be able to spot eels, sharks, stingrays, tuna fish, trevallies, anchovies, bump head parrotfish, turtles, snappers and, of course, the many manta rays.

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Kaelyn Lynch October 09, 2017

For me, if there’s one site that embodies diving in Komodo, it’s the Cauldron. Featuring a massive bowl carved out of the sea floor by years water being squeezed through a narrow passage, the Cauldron is best dived with a healthy amount of current.

On my best dive there, the current grew progressively stronger as we approached the bowl, until we were sucked straight in. We drifted along the left wall until ducking into the “fish bowl,” a miniature canyon filled with huge fish.

After having our fill, we let go with our reef hooks and rocketed out of the aptly named “shotgun,” a small notch in the lip of the bowl. In our best superman poses, we flew over the seabed at a thrilling speed, passing feeding mantas on the way to a beautiful soft coral garden, the perfect end to our wild ride.

Note: I’ve heard the Cauldron called “the shotgun” by some dive guides. To me, the “shotgun” always referred to the section of the Cauldron dive that I talked about, where basically divers were flung out of the bowl where there was a small notch that the water flowed particularly fast through.

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