Why travel so far out to see the Great Barrier Reef?
Hastings reef is 30 nautical miles (55 kilometres) off the coast from Cairns, out on the edge where the clean Pacific Ocean waters roll in.
It was here some 15,000 years ago during the last ice age the Australian coast line resided and it was here the reef began to grow.
Out here on the very edge is the preferred location for corals, well away from the coast and the effect of rivers and mangrove estuaries; out here on the edge of the Pacific Ocean is where the corals thrive.
Of course with healthy corals there are many dynamic and colourful fish. For snorkellers you are in the clearest of waters providing the utmost visibility.
Hastings is a typical outer reef, on most days a line of breakers marks where the deep ocean swells are breaking onto the reef wall.
The reef itself is shallow on top, with steep sides reminiscent of cliffs falling away into the surrounding water.
Skedaddle moors on the calm side at one of the most interesting and picturesque locations and although the back of the boat where you enter the water may be near shallow coral, the front is floating over water 15 metres deep.
Hastings Reef is spectacular in that it has shallow coral bays for novice snorkellers but also coral caves, coral overhangs, deep water drop offs, coral canyons, swim throughs which all begins only metres from the rear of Skedaddle. Along the steep sides there are swirling schools of thousands of tiny fish while on the reef there are colourful parrot fish, turtles, giant clams, little reef sharks, bright yellow butterfly fish, pairs of rabbit fish, countless varieties of brightly coloured damsel fish and of course, Nemo.