CAPTAIN’S LOG OMAN AGGRESSOR
CRUISE DATE: January 6, 2017 - January 13, 2018
ITINERARY: Hallaniyat Islands
HIGHLIGHTS: Frogfish; mobulla; turtle; leopard shark, eagle ray
Avg Air Temp: 20 oC - 25oC / 68 - 77oF
Avg Water Temp: 23oC / 71 oF
Avg Visibility: 8 - 12m / - feet
Avg Wind Speed: 10 - 23 knots
Weather: Moderate temperatures, Clear skies occasionally cloudy, moderate winds to strong winds
GUESTS: Mikhail, Elena, Sacha, Federica, Ciro, Viktor, Natalia, Kim, Thibaut, Vladimir, Tatiana
Total dives for the trip: 20
IRON DIVERS: Ciro; Viktor; Kim; Thibaut
FASHIONABLE DIVER AWARD: Vladimir; Viktor
DAY 1 – Saturday 6th January
Starting from 3:00pm our guests are arriving on the boat, they are going to be 11 on board this week. After a welcome fresh juices and Omani coffee, we lead them to discover their comfy cabins. Then we set up the diving gears and finishing some paperwork.
At 6:00pm, we ring the bell and all gathered in the salon for the safety briefing of the boat and the presentation of the crew. After the briefing, we serve the dinner, then it is time for a last glass of wine and then bed time.
DAY 2 – Sunday 7th January
We wake up at 7:00am in front of the harbor of Mirbat.
After the breakfast, we do the general diving safety briefing and the dive spot briefing. At 9:15am, we all take the direction by tender of our first dive spot Ras Mirbat. Today is a lovely winter day, the sea is super flat and the sun bright. Our adaptation dive offered us: nudibranch; honeycomb moray eel; shrimps and frog fish. The visibility is not so good but the variety of macro life cheers up our dive.
Back to the mother ship, we are directly moving to our next dive spot, the Marriott wreck, situated at 20 minutes navigation. At 11:30am we ring the bell and it is already time for our second dive briefing. On the wreck we saw: 3 huge lobsters; thousands of sweeper fishes and Bengali snapper fishes. We really had a fish show during this dive. Once we finished our dive, we started our smooth navigation to head a new diving area: Ras Gingary. It took us 1 hour navigation to be on zone.
The third dive of the day it is an exploration dive for all of us, and it was a great dive. This spot offers us a lot of surprise like mobulla, two sea turtles, schools of jack fishes and mackerel.
After this awesome dive, we started our main navigation to Schmies island with a really good sea condition. It will take us around 13 hours till we reach the dive spot of tomorrow morning. But until that at 6:30pm, it is dinner time cooked by our great chef.
DAY 3 – Monday 8th January
After a smooth crossing overnight we anchor beside our fist dive spot of the day: Fish highway. At 6:30am, we ring the bell for the briefing, this morning the sea conditions are perfect, and the view of the sunrise over the horizon is amazing. We jumped directly from the back of the platform. We saw a lot of fishes and blooming cauliflower coral.
Back on the boat Chef Salah is waiting us for the breakfast. At 10:00am it is briefing for our second dive: Angry grouper. This dive was really great we encounter eagle ray, octopus, schools of fusiliers and black coral. After the dive, back to the boat it time for lunch. In the same time the boat starts to move on the direction of Schmies island, where we are going to spend the rest of the day.
At 2:30pm after some rest, it is briefing time for Schmies fingers. There is no current today, so we are able to do this dive directly from the platform of the boat. We encounter swimming honeycomb morey eel; schools of fusiliers and group of juvenile barracuda.
Back on the boat, some fresh tuna sashimi prepared by our Chef Hussein are waiting for us, the tuna has been bought directly from the fisherman this morning. After getting warm again it is time for our night dive, we are going to dive Schmies fingers again from the back of the boat. We saw octopus, swimming morey eel, different kind of shrimps, tiny crabs, sleeping parrot fish.
This night we are going to stay in Schmies island. But for now, it is time to enjoy our dinner, the fresh baked fish cooked by our chef.
Day 4 – Tuesday 9th January
During the night, the wind picked up more than expected and made two of our moring lines broke. We could not stay in Schmies, we took the decision to move to a shuttle place in Al Qibliyah island. Because of the navigation time our first dive is a bit delayed, at 7:30am we jumped in the water from the back of the platform to dive Canal garden. This dive site offers us scorpion fish; sweet lips; swimming honeycomb moray eel; and nice coral.
At 10:30am, we ring the bell for the second dive, we are going to dive Al Qibliyah rock. This dive offered us dragon moray eel, black spotted stingray, marble shrimp, a huge group of banner fish and sweet lips.
After lunch and some rest, we take the way of our third dive by tender: Gotta Qibliyah. This afternoon dive was a really peaceful and enjoyable dive, we encounter a huge potato grouper; giant sweetlips; schools of jackfish, yellow goat fish not even bother by our presence in the water.
At 5:45pm it is briefing time for our night dive, tonight we are going to explore a new dive site Farsha Qibliyah, directly from the back of the platform and this dive offer us 3 blue spotted sting rays a lot of shrimps and school of snapper fishes . After dinner, we started our navigation to the most western island of the archipelago: Al Hasikiyah.
DAY 5 – Wednesday 10th January
This morning we arrived to Al Hasikiyah, at 6:30am it is briefing for our first dive: Al Hasikiyah coral bay. Today the wind is still bit strong, and it is more warm so it was better to be in the water! During the dive we encounter little crabs inside the coral table; marble shrimp; schools of little sardine looking like a silver cloud in motion. At 10:00am we ring the bell for our second dive: the cave. During this dive we saw a group of big jackfish; turtle; and a lot of fusiliers. On our way back to the boat we enjoyed a group of dolphin playing all around the bay where the boat is staying. This group of dolphin is going to keep us company till the afternoon.
At 2:30pm, it is briefing for our third dive: The arch. We encounter turtle again; thousands of glass fishes; one black spotted stingray surprised by our presence; nudibranch; group of big jackfish, turtle. This afternoon dive was really beautiful and full of fishes.
For the night dive, we dived The mount situated just at the back of the boat, this dive offers us big lobsters, nice red crabs and decorated crab .
Because of the wind condition on the Hallaniyat since two days, we have to stay on shuttle area, the consequence of that is that we can not have access at all the dive site we want. So tonight after dinner we are going to navigate to Ras Gingary, and do some exploration dives over there.
DAY 6 – Thursday 11th January
This morning, we wake up anchor in Ras Gingary bay, after a wake up at 6:15am then it is time for first dive briefing: Ras Bengary North. This dive is going to be an exploration dive. This spot offered us 2 turtles; a big grouper; and a leopard shark.
After the first dive, we moved the boat to Ras Gingary south, where we are going to do our second dive. This dive is also an exploration dive, and it offered us 6 turtles; big lobsters; different species of nudibranchs. After this morning of diving we take the direction of Mirbat. For our afternoon dive we did Tinka rock. At 6:00pm we ring the bell for our last night dive of the week: Marriott wreck. This night dive was really awesome, we encounter 2 turtles; baby cuttlefish; squid; nudibranch; decorated crab.
Back to the boat it is dinner time, the Chef is waiting for us with is roasted turkey. During our dinner we are moving in front of the harbor of Mirbat to spend the night.
DAY 7 – Friday 12th January
This morning we wake up at 6:00am for our last dive of the week: Ras Mirbat. Today we are going to explore the deeper part of this spot. We encounter turtle; eagle ray; nudibranchs; and beautiful soft coral. Back to the boat we start directly our way back to the marina of Juweira, as we have to enter in the marina before 10:20am. But because the wind raises strongly all the way back to the marine, arrived in front of the marina we could not enter with the boat for safety issue. The captain took the decision to go back to Mirbat, witch is a protected area without wind and spend the night over there. We arrived at Mirbat at 1:00pm, our guests enjoyed the sunbed all the afternoon and then at 5:30pm it is time for our cocktail party 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 12, 2018
Entry by: Oman Aggressor Crew