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Went down to Antarctica in March (7 days on the peninsula). We made it down past the polar circle to 66˚ 33’ 47.5’S and were able to dive under an iceberg in Crystal Sound where a friendly and curious crabeater seal chose to spend some time with us under the ice. A pretty magical experience. A few photos embedded here. For more pictures see: instagram.com/bunderwater by Michael Heyns, on Flickr by Michael Heyns, on Flickr Michael Heyns, on Flickr by Michael Heyns, on Flickr
Hello Wetpixelers! After lurking on it for years, last month i've finally made it to the Farne Islands (facing Seahouses, Northumberland, UK) for 1 week family vacations, but with a side-agenda to go diving with the famous grey seals. I think i don't need to introduce this destination since there have been some wetpixel trips organized over there in the past, plus a recent article from Alex Mustard on front page mentioning it too. Nevertheless, i'll be happy to help with any question you may have on the diving there. We had planned for 4 days of diving (each day including one double-tank trip, so 2 dives/day), but unfortunately the sea conditions allowed for only 1 day... I've asked the boat operator if there was a better time of the year to come back, but apparently we've just had very bad luck, and October is supposed very good to dive there. Still, i've taken a few pictures which i am happy enough about, but i would really appreciate your constructive criticism on which ones to improve, and how. thanks a million! Nicolas
Hey Everyone. Just an update on what we're doing up in the Hebrides and also overseas with our wildlife and travel company Basking Shark Scotland (www.baskingsharkscotland.co.uk). Along with Dive Oban & Argyll which diving specific (www.diveobanandargyll.co.uk) Although 2014 wasn't a classic year for sharks and despite the media sensationalising things all over the UK, we still bucked the national trend which confirms that the Hebrides is the best place in the world for these sharks. We had around 150 sharks over the season which ranged from May-Aug this year. We also had excellent encounters with common & bottlenose dolphins, minke whales and sunfish. Our Grey & Harbour Seal trips have been running really well and are generally a great addition to our trips. Add this to the excellent marine life and visibility here there is fantastic diving and free diving opportunities, as well as the surface experiences such as the stunning Fingals cave. We really have a unique and diverse area, which combining the amazing pelagic life and diving opportunities results in an world class area. We also run a specific diving business - Dive Oban & Argyll which is diving charters and expeditions out of Oban. This can be booked for general diving year round and we have lots of very interesting photographic subjects nearby including the sepulid reefs, northern sea fans & fireworks anemones. For our basking shark & wildlife trips, check out some of the highlights of the year on the video below. We've been having good success with our drone and put together a video at the end of the year to showcase some of this. We'll be following up with more underwater footage but it always takes so long to work on all the media. [video=youtube;o4jH4JFo33Y] We have a variety of trips running over summer 2015 which range from day trips to week long expeditions. For serious underwater photographers who want specific time with the sharks and less distractions of mixed groups then we would recommend our week long trips which will focus on the sharks specifically. We have a lot of time to have great interactions with them, but also for other large pelagic and a fun one below from this year. We are running two specific shark week trips over the following dates next year and places are limited to 10 on each trip; 25th July - 1st August 2015 1st August - 8th August 2015 Our trip are based in the heart of the Hebrides and will include 6 full days at sea. Our trips are based aboard our Redbay Cabin RIB's, both having a 11m passenger style which is used for the sharks and a dive specific version. They are highly seaworthy, comfortable and fast, however the bonus is we have the speed to cover lots of ground but also have shore based for comfort. Very different to chugging around on a liveaboard in each others pockets. Price is from £980 based on a twin share, we do also have double ensuites, which cost a little extra as to be expected. In addition to our Hebrides trips following on from two great years in Iceland, we are continuing on with the short breaks there for 2015 too. Generally we visit in October which is after all the crowds have left but is also a good time for Aurora. Diving or Snorkelling is at the famous visiblity of the Silfra lagoon, volcanic ake, with additional trips to the geysers, waterfalls & hot springs in the area. They are 3 & 4 day trips based on UK flights but we do have other people internationally flying in to meet us with the good connections. More information can be found here, with pics and videos from the last couple of trips. http://baskingsharkscotland.co.uk/diving-swimming-in-iceland/ We also have a couple of last minute spaces on our Orca/Killer Whale trip in January 2015. We are taking a small group this year to Norway and only recently finished bashing out the details after our 2014 trip. Dates are 22nd- 29th Jan 2015. See here for more info and more details available via email if interested. http://baskingsharkscotland.co.uk/swim-with-killer-whales/ Thanks for your interest and very happy to chat via email and phone about any of our trips. Kind Regards Shane Wasik Basking Shark Scotland Dive Oban & Argyll Shane Wasik Photography