Log Date: Saturday, Aug 26, 2017
Entry By: Red Sea Aggressor Crew
Air Temp: 29C min – 36C max
Water Temp: 29C- 86F
Exposure suit: – 3mm Full length / Shorty or Rashguard.
Visibility: 25 to 40m - 75 to 120 f
Weather: Clear skies, moderate wind
Itinerary: Daedalus – St.John’s – Abu Dabab
Cruise Director: Shaker
Instructors/Guides: Katia & Rashad
Chef: Hussein & Sherif
Steward(s): Hegazy & Ali
Seamen: Emad, Ayoub, Hossam and Ali
GUESTS: Wally, Phillip, Kai, Frank, Bill, Kelly, John, Jeff, Louise, Sheryl, Jim, Chad and Jodi, Paul and Victoria, Rebecca and Ryan.
Sunday – Marsa Shona, Abu Dabab III
Monday – Daedalus
Tuesday – St. John’s Small Gota, Big Gota, St.John’s Caves, Paradise Reef
Wednesday – Shaab Maksour, Shaab Claudia, Sataya reef , Gota Sataya
Thursday – Shaab Sharm, Shaab Marsa Alam
Friday – Abu Dabab 1
This week we went out on our Southern Itinerary and happily welcomed guests from USA, Venezuela and UK. As everyone had arrived by mid-afternoon, bags were unpacked, BCDs and regs were pulled out and set up, and cameras were assembled! The sound of the bell indicated that it was time for the Welcome Briefing. We gladly tucked into pizzas and the traditional Hibiscus drink of Egypt. Later on, we enjoyed a steak dinner and Sherif’s delicious cheesecake. An early night was on the cards for many after a longjourney to reach us, so we said our goodnights and looked forward to the day ahead!
DAY 1 - Sunday 27 August
The smell of coffee and a hot breakfast greeted us on Sunday morning. Our permissions were sanctioned nice and early so the engines were started, the lines untied, and we headed for the open sea. We arrived on our first dive site, Marsa Shoana. We took a middle mooring today so we could explore evenmore of the bay. Jodi was starting the Nitrox Diver course. Everyone descended to the shallow sandy bottom and continued along the reef looking for Bluespotted Rays, Lion Fish, Giant Moray Eels, Pipe Fish and Cornet Fish. The second dive was in the north of Marsa Shoana. Our
divers encountered a Turtle, more Giant Moray Eels, schools of GoatFish! Abu Dabbab 3 were our chosen dive sites for the third dive of the day. We descended at the back of the boat and finned over the coral garden. Phillipfound a Giant Moray eel and took pictures of it. Then our dive guide found an Octopus and Jim was ready with his camera. Taking plenty photos of it. We continued along over a pretty mountain corals. We also swung by beautiful Anemones that sit nestled in a bed of Sea Plumes. From there, we looped back round to the boat making our safety stops over green mountain coral, admiring a Feather star was coming out of a shelter. Then we said goodbye to the sun and we jumped in the water for the night dive. Hundreds shrimps we spotted and two Moray eels, a Unicorn fish and sleeping parrot fish. That was great final of the first day of diving.
Our guests opted for a nice glass of wine or a beer with their dinner so we untied the lines after dinner and began the overnight journey south to Daedalus.
DAY 2 - Monday 28 August
Monday morning arrived, and we were moored safely and ready to go at Daedalus. Up in the north, we saw a Hammerhead gracefully making its way through the blue towards Tuna, as well as Barracuda, Giant Trevally, and us. Late morning there was no current at thesouth side, so we jumped off the platform and descended to the plateau. TwoNapoleon Wrasses came so close to us and we were able to take great shots and filmed these friendly critters. Later we continued our dive over the plateau and Jeff found a giant Moray eel. Kai encountered an Eagle Ray on the edge of plateau.
Early afternoon we visited gorgeous Anemone City. Flashes of cameras and we left these beautiful place and drifted along the western wall with slightly current.
Then all went to Lighthouse, up to the top and we enjoyed the view.
The last dive of the daywe began on the west at the Elephant ear coral, which starts from 2 meters depth and goes down to 15 meters.
Finning extra slowly along the wall at the south of Daedalus always pays off as many smaller creatures can be seen here. Wart Slugs, Moray eel, Pipe Fish, and Scorpion Fish make their homes here. Barracuda, Filefish and Lion Fish were also added to divers logbooks afterwards.
We left Daedalus Reef and cruised overnight to our next anchorage St Johns
DAY 3 - Tuesday 29 August
We arrived in St Johns early in the morning while everyone was still fast asleep. Our day started at Small Gota. The current was slightly and we were able to see almost all of this glorious reef. There were a Turtle, which we spotted on the surface just before we jumped in the water, a Moray eel and Blue Fin Tuna. After breakfast our guests enjoyed spectacular dive at dive site Big Gota. There were two White Tip reef shark in a cave, one Grey Reef Sharks, a big Napoleon Wrasse and Tuna. Everyone also enjoyed swimming through the cave on the east side where a clump of Magnificent Anemone guards the entrance. Looking around, the different shades of colours were breathtaking. Hard and soft corals of all colours came alive against the still blue water in the background.
The famous St Johns Caves waited for us for the third dive of the day. Wart Slugs were on the rubbly bottom, Hydroids lined the rocky corridors, and a Napoleon Wrasse swam around at the entrance. Inside, Bluespotted Rays glided over the bottom, two Prickly cucumbers in the lagoon and tiny Dart fish were securing their little house. The light streamed through overhead and lookedmagical as it fell, dappled, onto the bottom.
The fourth dive was on Paradise reef along the west side of this reef.
Our divers saw three Moray eel, Wart slug! To end the dive, guests were lead through some more caves back to the boat where they also saw plenty ofgorgeous Anemones! The night dive took place at St Johns Paradise reef. Everyone was very happy to see not one but three Spanish Dancers which were crawling around! They also saw plenty of Shrimps and a Spider Crab. Two Moray eels hunted and Jim filmed it!
DAY 4 - Wednesday 30 August
Our boat was moored at Shaab Maksour. The south of this very long reef is stunning in the early morning. We jumped off the boat and explored the southern plateau around two colorful and rich pinnacles, then we continued swimming along east wall over the coral garden. We saw Moray eels, three Scorpion fish, Arabian Angel fish.
Secondly, we dived Shaab Claude. The swim-throughs and caverns are so much fun and a photographers/videographers paradise. The sunlight streams in through cracks in the reef overhead and scatters on the rubbly floor where Bluespotted Rays hang out. Little Wart Slugs cling to rocks, and schools ofCave Sweepers and Goat Fish hide in the shadows. The walls on the inside of the swim-throughs are lined in orange and yellow Hydroids which glow when they catch the light. And outside of the cave our old friend Napoleon Wrasse wasposing for cameras. After lunch, we moved the boat the short distance to Sataya Reef itself.
The south of Sataya reef was the place for our third dive. The drop off had schooling Red Sea Banner Fish, Giant Moray Eels and Anthias swimming about. The wall disappeared vertically into the blue. As we swam over the hard coral garden en route back to the boat, large Red Sea Coral Groupers passed us and schools of hundreds of Fusliers looked pretty silhouetted against the fading light.
Then our captain moved boat to Gota Sataya, where we spent remainder of the day. Here divers saw Giant Moray Eel, Lion Fish the big mounds of hard coral in shallows were pretty to swim over in the fading light. We also made our night dive at Gota Sataya and spotted a Triton trumpet! There are so many Bascet stars and As we turned round the great pinnacle, we saw a Gold-Dotted Flatworm stretched out on a rock, and many Basket Stars swaying in the current as the reef bent round.
Again, our divers opted for a relaxing glass of wine with dinner so the thrill of the night dive would wait for another day!
DAY 5 - Thursday 31 August
After another overnight journey, we arrived in the area of Wadi Gemal ready to dive Shaab Sharm for our first dive. The plateau was alive with many fish including a Hawksbill Turtle which was having its breakfast! For the second dive at Shaab Sharm, we jumped off the boat and drifted with a current to the south west. The visibility was magnificent and the water so calm. The reef wall is so colourful here with a huge variety of coral species. We saw a Porcupine Fish, Lion Fish, a Bluespotted Rays and schools of Snapper. Sheryl spotted a Scorpion Fish, Frank found a Moray eel and Wally found purple Stone Fish! We unmoored and continued our journey north to the area of Marsa Alam where wedived Gota Marsa Alam, which is a stunning dive site with swim-throughs andsmall wreck.There were also many small fish and Bluespotted Rays, and the top of the reef was teeming with all different species of Blennies which amused us as we made our safety stops. We found a crocodile fish lying incognito on the sand beside the wreck and Black spotted ray passed by. Then divers jumped in at Gota Marsa Alam for the night dive. They made their way to the wreck that lies on the shallow sandy bottom. Schools of Goat Fish caught the light of divers torches, and Bluespotted Rays skimmed across the bottom. A sea star was found, a scorpion fish and two hunting Moray eel. One of them chough a surgeon fish!
DAY 6 - Friday 01 September
A blustery day greeted us on Friday morning but we geared up eager to jump in at Abu Dabbab 1 after our morning coffee! Hard corals of all different species cascade from the top of the reef which sits a few metres beneath the surface right the way down to the bottom where it meets the sand. No sooner had we descended than we saw a Bluspotted stingray sitting on the sand. Turning the corner, we found a Moray Eel which surprised us with its head poking out from a hole in the rock!
For the last dive, we jumped in at the east of Abu Dabbab 1. There we saw Titan Trigger fish, six Squids and a Bluespotted Ray excavating its meal from the sand!
Its been another fun week on the Red Sea Aggressor, and wed like tocongratulate...
NITROX DIVERS: Jody
IRON DIVERS: Phillip, Chad, Kelly, Frank, Bill, John, Jim
Good effort, everyone!
We hope to see all of you again. In the meantime...
Safe Diving Always
Your Red Sea Aggressor Crew