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Red Sea - Daedalus, Rocky and Zabergad


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#1 Longimanus1975

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Posted 05 July 2012 - 01:23 AM

Just thought I would share my experience of my trip to the red sea in June as I think it was pretty special.

We flew out from the Uk on the 20th June for a weeks liveaboard on the Grand Sea Serpent depating from Port Ghalib, once at the boat we were greeted by some familiar faces as I had been on the boat twice before.

After the usual greet, passport, medical sign off and diving qualification check we settled down for the night in the port looking forward to the check dive at Abu Dabab.

At the first site we were met with the usual red sea reef, the view from the boat was amazing, the vis looked the best I have ever seen. This was my first dive with my D7000, I chose to get buoyancy correct first before diving with it so left it onboard. After ten minutes of remembering the red sea delights my buddy's second stage started to release air, so we had to abort the dive and get back to the boat. The o ring had gone, so much for getting your regs serviced before you go away. I grabbed my camera whilst the o ring was replaced and gave it its first dive, what a pleasure it was to dive with, well balanced and such an upgrade from my P&S. As we were now last in the water, we were last out as well, once picked up we noticed ribs away from the boat, basically there was a pod of dolphins that people were snorkelling with, we were on them in an instance and had 15 mins with 15+ dolphins, some getting frisky with each other. All in all a great start!

The next dive was Elphinstone, I had never had much fun here due to strong currents making it hard to take in the marine life, never seen any sharks in 3 dives so wasnt expecting much. we got in, small current so we had time to take in the life and also spotted the first sharks, a grey reef and a hammerhead, maybe Elphinstone was staring to live up to its reputation?

The next site was Daedalus, I have not dived loads in the world but this place is top of my list at present, I have had some good times here and this time I was not dissappointed.
Due to a vote we stayed at this site for 2 days, which was great and gave us all plenty of opportunities to see the marine life.
During the stay as a group we had multple sightings of schooling hammerheads, with my last dive seeing a school of 20+ strong. One group followed a school away from the reef and saw a marlin as well. I and a few others dived under the boat with oceanics for 3 dives, one very placid shark and another which took a real interest for 10 mins, something I will never forget, it definatley got the heart pumping! We also had grey reefs as well as a silky circling at night, at one stage we had a pod of dolphins and an oceanic circling the boat at the same time after dark. We had the usual beautiful corals and anemone city to also check out, all in all a fantastic 2 days.

Next was Rocky, here we had hammerhead sightings again and large schools of tuna 30-40 strong. A short trip from Rocky we were at Zabergad, here you get to dive the best coral gardens that I have ever seen along with all the usual red sea sightings. Zabergad is a breeding ground for turtles during the August IIRC.

The last full day was spent diving the Fury Shoals area with some great dives showcasing what the red sea is all about, this day was the only day we didnt see sharks.

The last day we did Elphinstone, with a sighting of another hammerhead and grey reef and a nice dive along the opposite wall to the first day, again the current was very light. The last dive was at the seagrass site with the promise of green turtles, pipefish, juv batfish and the elusive dugong. I thought to myself if I see that dugong it will just about make this holiday perfect. We had the experience of spending time with a huge green turtle eating the seagrass and seeing most of the other marine life but no the dugong, but it was in the vacinity as a member from the boat who could only snorkel did see it.

All in all the week was very good, plenty of sightings with very little currents, when the guides turn around and say it was a good week it must be pretty special, I certainly will be looking to go back next year.

#2 MortenHansen

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Posted 05 July 2012 - 04:13 AM

Sound like a great trip- gotta go for a south trip again at some point when i'm back in Europe!

#3 Steve Douglas

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 09:26 AM

Only dove the Red Sea once, when I led a group there in 2009. Dove all the spots you did and most of the diving was pretty good, however, waking up in the morning and seeing 9 large liveaboards all moored up at the same spot drove me bananas. Don't think I'd make the long haul out there again.
Steve

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#4 Longimanus1975

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 09:30 AM

Steve

If I told you that we were the only boat at all the sites all week would you change your mind? I am not sure if this has to do with the political situation at the moment or whether it was just the time of year, but I was very surprised myself. I am off again in October, so can let you know if it's the same again then

#5 tdpriest

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Posted 20 July 2012 - 03:55 AM

The sharks have been out late this year because the surface waters have remained cool for longer than usual (maybe for the same reason that the British weather has been so delightful): it's been a good year...

Tim

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#6 Steve Douglas

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 07:15 PM

The only boat? Hmmmmm, maybe.

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