Back to the old faithful: Lady Musgrave

We are finally back at the Great Barrier Reef and are introducing our friends Greg & Ann to the joys of reef hopping. We have chosen the old faithful, Lady Musgrave, as the first in a series of reef anchorages.

We had a lovely screecher sail from Burnett Heads to the Lady Musgrave Lagoon, arriving there at low tide with plenty of visibility. It is fantastic place to introduce our friends to the Reef: the experience of the coral cay appearing on the horizon, the magnificent colours as you enter the lagoon, the relatively protected, vast and varied environment. There were quite a few other boats in there, but we were lucky enough to pick up a mooring, which was a bonus.

Arrival at the Lagoon entrance
Lady Musgrave Lagoon
Lady Musgrave coral cay & lagoon

Just quietly, Wade and I were a little apprehensive about our return to the Reef, wondering how we would find the coral after the last round of bleaching. Luckily the Capricorn & Bunker group has been spared from the worst of it and we could not see any more damage than during our pre-Christmas visit. It is far from perfect, but we can still be wowed!

We got into the swing of things quickly: leisurely pace in warm conditions, walks on the coral cay, a couple of snorkels each day amongst the many fish and turtles, tasty meals, colourful sunsets, all very relaxing! It is our turn to experience the reef and cruising adventure vicariously, with our friends enjoying wonderful new discoveries.

Greg & Ann

We got Ann comfortable with snorkeling in the shallows and Greg better able to equalise his ears. The lagoon is large and there are many spots to explore outside of the green protection zone where most people and tourist charters go. We tried a couple of areas we had not been to before and were pleasantly surprised, swimming through clouds of little fish and groups of larger drummers and sweet lips. The coral showed some damage, but overall was reasonable. And for newcomers, it was all quite exciting . Wade was able to spear us some fish, so sashimi, baked fish, fish patties and ceviche were on the menu!

  • Striped Sweetlip
  • Green Sea Turtle at cleaning station
  • Green Sea Turtle
  • Green Sea Turtle
  • Pullers and damsels
  • Harlequin Tuskfish
  • Orangefin Anemonefish
  • Orangefin Anemonefish
  • Graceful Moorish Idols
  • schools of pullers and damsels
  • Neon Damsels
  • Crown of Thorns
  • Whitetip Shark
  • Lobophyton
  • Close up of polyps

We stayed at Lady Musgrave for 5 nights and were able to get in the water on all but one day when it blew hard. We were safe even if it was a little noisy and jiggly. And stormy days end with spectacular sunsets!

We were able to enjoy more exploring in the lagoon as soon as fair weather returned, then hopped to the next lagoon, enjoying a great sail and gentle conditions. Stay tuned for a feature on Fitzroy Reef in our next post!

11 thoughts on “Back to the old faithful: Lady Musgrave

  1. Great photos, Chris! The views of the Cay and sunsets as well as underwater are terrific. 🙂

  2. Wow, guys, the photos are sooo beautiful! What a blessing it is to be there and see such beauty. ❤️🇦🇺

      • That’s so good, isn’t it? I was recently back in Michigan, my home state to see the family, always good for the soul! I live almost 2000 miles from them.

  3. I am pleased you are having a nice time in the reef with Greg and Ann. Good snorkelling too for them to learn lots. Have fun. In Qld, going home in 2-3 days. Was good to catch up with Lisa and family too

  4. I was really taken, Chris, by the vibrant colors of so many of the fish. Wow! I must confess, though, that the sea turtles were the stars for me, especially the shot of the one that was “flying.” The drone shots are amazing and I love the way that you include a good portion of the sky–I am fascinated by all of the different clouds.

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