CAPTAIN’S LOG OMAN AGGRESSOR
CRUISE DATE: December 30, 2017 - January 6, 2018
ITINERARY: Hallaniyat Islands
HIGHLIGHTS: Black spotted stingray; Guitar shark; Turtle
Avg Air Temp: 25oC / 77oF
Avg Water Temp: 23oC / 71 oF
Avg Visibility: 10 - 15m /32 - 50 feet
Avg Wind Speed: 10 knots
Weather: Moderate temperatures, Clear skies, moderate winds
GUESTS: Gennady, Elena, Nobuhiko, Seiko, Devin, Joanne, Sara, Mark, Brent, Jackie, Yanik, Andrea, Ciro, Hadi, Ingrid, Nathalie, Victoria, Paul, Cornelia, David
Total dives for the trip: 20
MILESTONES: #400 Victoria & Paul; #200 Devin
IRON DIVERS: Gennady; Nobuhiko; Sara; Mark; Jackie; Yanik; Ciro; Hadi
FIRST NIGHT DIVE: Hadi
COURSE: Hadi: advanced adventurer + Specialty deep diving/prefect buoyancy/night limited visibility/enriched air nitrox
At 3:00pm, 17 of our guests are arriving on the boat. After a welcome fresh juices and Omani coffee, we lead them to them comfy cabins.
After setting up the diving gear, and finishing some paperwork, at 5:00pm it is time for the safety briefing of the boat and the introduction of the crew.
At 7:00pm, it is dinner time and also the arrival of our last 3 guests, this week we are going to be 20 on board.
DAY 2 – Sunday 31st December
At 6:30am, we left the marina of Juweira for the direction of Mirbat.
After breakfast, we ring the bell at 7:15am for the general diving briefing, everyone is gathering in the salon.
It took us 2h15min navigation, to arrived on our first diving area: Ras Mirbat. We are going to do 2 dives on this dive spot situated just in front of Mirbat’s harbor.
At 9:30am, all the divers are leaving the mother ship by tender to go for the check dive. This first dive of the week is also a milestone for Victoria, who completed 400th dives, congratulations Victoria!!
At 2:30pm we ring the bell again, and gathering in the salon for the second dive briefing. As Ras Mirbat is a really huge dive spot, we can easily explore new area and meet some nice pink soft coral covering the rocks; nudibranchs; moray eel; shrimp etc.…
After the dive, we are moving to the direction of the Marriott wreck for our night dive. Here we are going to encounter a big turtle; many blue spotted stingray, slipper lobster, and a lot of sleepy parrot fish.
This night dive was the first night of Hadi, and now he is now addicted!
At 8:00pm, it is dinner time and for some celebration for the up coming new year with some champagne toasts!!
DAY 3 – Monday 1st January
After a smooth crossing overnight we are arriving at Al Hasikiyah island around 4:00am. Al Hasikiyah island is the most western island of the Hallaniyat archipelago witch count in total 5 islands.
After a wake up at 6:00am, 30 minutes later it is time for the first briefing. This morning we are going to dive Al Hasikiyah plateau, this dive spot is situated at 5 minutes by tender from the boat. The sea is really calm and flat today. During the dive we spotted one black spotted stingray, and few potatoes groupers.
Back on the boat it is time for breakfast, and some rest before the second dive.
At 10:00am, it is briefing time, this dive is going to be directly for the boat platform, we are going to dive Aquarium. Today we spotted some soles and torpedo ray.
After the dive it is lunch time and then nap time!! The afternoon briefing is going to be at 2:30pm.
For our third dive, we go again to Al Hasikiyah plateau but on the North-East side. The current increased compared to this morning, so we were able to do a slow drift dive, we spotted schools of red tooth trigger fish, one big back spotted stingray, and some huge honeycomb moray eel.
Back to the boat it is time for the afternoon snack. At 5:45pm, it is briefing for the night dive, tonight we are going to dive Aquarium directly from the back of the boat. During this dive we saw some huge nudibranchs (around 15cm), blue spotted stingray!!
Tonight we are having a small celebration again, it is Paul birthday, Happy Birthday Paul!!!
Day 4 – Tuesday 2nd January
After a half night of navigation, we wake up anchored just beside our fist dive spot of the day: Fish highway. This dive is an easy morning dive as we jump direct from the platform of the boat. The spectacle of the fishes hide in the colorful soft coral was stunning this morning.
After this first dive, we are moving to the island of Schmies, where we are going to spend the rest of the day. At 10:00am, it is already time for our second dive: Schmies fingers South West direction.
After the fresh fish baked by the Chef and some rest, it is time for out afternoon dive, we go back on Schmies fingers but the North Est direction. This smooth drift dive offers us some schools of yellow goat fish, and some medium size grouper.
At 5:45pm, it is time for the night dive briefing. The sea was really calm all day long, and offer us a stunning view with the bright full moon. During this dive we saw some honeycomb moray eel and few octopus.
DAY 5 – Wednesday 3rd January
During the night, we left Schmies island to Al Qibliyah island, witch is the most eastern island. On the way to Al Qibliyah rock, our first dive site, we could admire the magic view of the full moon still up in the sky and the sunrise.
During this dive we spotted one dragon moray eel, and one guitar shark.
After the breakfast offered by the Chef, at 10:00am it is already time for our second dive. We are going to go to Gotta Qibliyah, this dive site offered us a lot of fun with some swim through and little caves, we spotted some lobster, big sweet lips, and the usual company of the yellow goat fishes.
After lunch, and some time for digestion, the bell is ringging at 2:30pm for our afternoon dive at Canal garden, just at the back of the boat. This shallow dive site offers us a huge coral garden, schools of sweetlips. This dive is also a milestone for Paul, who completed his 400th dives, congratulation Paul!
After the dive for some of our guest it is time to enjoy the hot tub with a glass of wine and the splendid sunset on the mountains of the island.
But the diving day is not finish yet for everyone, some still have plenty of energy for a night dive! We jumped again from the back of the boat, for canal garden, we encounter plenty of crabs of all sizes, and during our safety stop the fusiliers came playing with our light.
After the night dive, we started the engine and start our way back to the first island of the week Al Hasikiyah where we are going to spend our last day on the Hallaniyat.
DAY 6 – Thursday 4th January
We wake up on the Est side of Al Hasikiyah island. After the briefing of 6:30am it is time to jump on the tender for our first dive of the day: Coral bay. This dive offered us schools of glass fishes, one turtle, and a lot of healthy hard and soft coral.
Today the wind is a bit stronger, and our Chef is waiting for us with his tasty hot breakfast. After warming up, at 10:00am is time for our second briefing: The arch. We only have been diving this dive spot twice. As the Hallaniyat island is still a new diving destination, the islands offer us a lot to discover and explore, and the arch is the result of one of this exploration. This dive offered us schools of snappers and sea turtle and 2 eagle ray.
For our afternoon dive, we jump from the back of the platform, The mount is a small hill in the middle of a huge coral garden, during the dive we encounter some decorated crap and a huge group of sardine. This dive is also a milestone for Devin, who completed his 200th dives, congratulation Devin!
At 5:45pm we had our night dive briefing and we did The mount again, directly from the back of the platform, it was really beautiful night dive. We also had the surprise just after to be back on the boat to see some mobulla attracted by the light of our boat doing a show for us.
DAY 7 – Friday 5th January
After a night of calm navigation from the Hallaniyat, we are arriving on our dive spot: the Marriott wreck close to Mirbat. As we have to enter in the marina at maximum 10:30am to catch the high tide, this morning the briefing is an early morning briefing at 6:15am. This last dive looked like a really busy highway with a lot of fishes, we were surrounded by a groups of snapper fish and Bengali snapper and a lot of parrot fishes.
Directly after the dive, we started our navigation back to the marina of Juweira. At 5:30pm it is our cocktail party, time to celebrated this week and thanks all our guests for joining us this week aboard The Oman Aggressor, and we hope to see you again.
Your Oman Aggressor Crew.
Log Date: January 7, 2018
Entry by: Oman Aggressor Crew