Diving the Marianas

About 85 feet down, inside the crevasse of a submerged volcano in Marianas Trench Marine National Monument, a bubble coral extends poisonous "sweeper" tentacles to push away competitors. (Patrick Symmes)
Marianas

About 85 feet down, inside the crevasse of a submerged volcano in Marianas Trench Marine National Monument, a bubble coral extends poisonous "sweeper" tentacles to push away competitors.

The trouble with tribbles: this confidently cute sea cucumber gets ugly when harassed by predators, bathing them in mucus.

Marianas
(Patrick Symmes)


Saipan's Grotto, where a jungle cenote drains through caves and narrow passages into the ocean.

Marianas
(Patrick Symmes)


Glen Smith gets the ultimate slow food on Pagan island, where Japanese war planes lie in the weeds, trees growing through their wings.

Marianas
(Patrick Symmes)


Fan coral in the clear waters of the Marianas, where few islands have been catalogued by divers.

Marianas
(Patrick Symmes)


With meat like lobster, coconut crabs are overfished in the Marianas--but turned out to be prolific in the protected monument region.

Marianas
(Patrick Symmes)


Hernan Tudela, a Chamorro critic of the marine monument, teaches his son to use a throw net at Lau Lau beach, Saipan.

Marianas
(Patrick Symmes)


A midsummer eclipse envelopes Maug.

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(Patrick Symmes)


In Saipan, crime reports often describe robbers taking cash from a shop keeper—and as much SPAM as they could carry.

Marianas
(Patrick Symmes)

Filed To: SCUBA Diving
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