About the wreck
The Milora was a steam powered coal cargo transport, built in 1921 in Melbourne and initially named the Emita. She had a cargo of 2,800 tonnes of coal on board when she ran aground in the Port Phillip Heads in September 1934. After removing 1,800 tonnes of coal she was refloated a week later with most of her hold flooded, and taken to Williamstown between two tugs. By 1935 she was found to be uneconomical to repair, stripped of her valuable parts and taken out and scuttled.
The Milora now sits in about 40m of water. Originally 100m long, she is one of the larger wrecks in the Ship’s Graveyard and a great dive.
About the dive
We’d done a morning dive on the Wareatea and were looking for a slightly shallower second splash. The vis on the Wareatea had been spectacular and the sponges on the stern of the wreck were stunning. The Milora had similar vis but the colour of the water seemed just slightly more grey than blue. Combine that with an absence of orange and yellow sponge coatings and the photos from this dive have a very different feeling.
About the photo
After having some difficulties with the off camera strobes on the morning dive I rearranged things slightly for this one. Unfortunately this made things worse instead of better and there was no off camera light to be had. Luckily the sun was still out and we were slightly shallower to allow for some ambient light. The stern here is a large tangled mess of metal and I moved around trying to find recognisable shapes.
I like the shots here that shot the rust breaking through the sealife, and the contrast between the orange and the blue water. I felt throughout the dive that I wasn’t capturing quite the right angle, so this wreck might benefit from a couple more dives to find the shot that’s hiding in there.