CAPTAIN’S LOG OMAN AGGRESSOR
CRUISE DATE: March 31, 2018 – April 7, 2018
ITINERARY: Hallaniyat Islands
HIGHLIGHTS: toadfish (bifax lacinia); brown eel catfish; eagle ray; dragon moray, clown triggerfish; leopard shark, bowmouth wedgefish, mobula
Avg Air Temp: 25 oC - 28oC / 68oF - 77oF
Avg Water Temp: 24oC / 71 oF
Avg Visibility: 5 – 15 m / 16 – 49 feet
Avg Wind Speed: 8 - 14 knots
Weather: Moderate temperatures, Clear skies occasionally cloudy, moderate winds
GUESTS: Scott; Johanna; Cornelia; Christian; veronica; Nick; Chris; Scott; Alex; Igor; Maggie; John; Alex
Total dives for the trip: 22
IRON DIVERS: Chris; Nick; Scott; Douglas; Cornelia; Christian
JIM CHURCH AWARD: Chris % Nick
MILESTONE AWARD: Cornelia 300th dives; John & Maggie 100th dives
CLOSE FAMILY AWARD: Cornelia & Christian
REEF AMNASSADOR AWARD: Veronika
COURSE CERTIFICATION: Chris: Nitrox specialty
DAY 1 – Saturday 31st March
Starting from 3:00pm our guests are arriving on the boat, they are going to be 13 on board this week coming from USA, Russia, Finland, Austria. After a welcome fresh juices and Omani coffee, we lead our guest to discover their comfy cabins. Then we set up the diving gears and finishing some paperwork. At 4:30pm, 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 left the marina in the direction of Mirbat where we are going to dive tomorrow. At 6:30pm we ring the bell for dinner.
DAY 2 – Sunday 1st April
This morning we wake up at 6:15am in front of the harbor of Mirbat. At 6:45 we ring the bell and all gathered in the salon for the general diving safety briefing and the dive spot briefing. After the briefing, it is time to get ready and go with tender for our first dive of the week. During this dive we encounter: egg cowrie; orange spotted shield slug; toadfish (bifax lacinia); African chromodorid; varicose wart slug; boxer shrimp; marble shrimp; painted spiny lobster; eagle ray; snubnose pompano; turtle. After this really rich first div, we are back on the boat for the hot breakfast. At 11:15am, we ring the bell for the briefing of the Marriott wreck. During this dive we saw: clouds of thousand of vanikoro sweeper; big group of bronze-striped gunt, yellowfin goatfish; brown eel cat fish; blue spotted stingray. Like always the wreck was really crowded with fish. Back on the boat it is lunch time. During the same time, we are moving in the direction of eagle bay, where we are going to do our afternoon dive. During this dive the visibility was not really good and the thermocline was locally really cold (21 oC), but despite that we had a nice dive with mobulla, and really colorful soft coral. This dive was the 100th for John, congratulation John! Back on the boat, we directly started our navigation in the direction of Qibliyah island. As Qibliyah island is the most eastern island of the archipelago, we are going to have 12h navigation, that is why there is no night dive tonight. At 7:00pm, we ring the bell for the dinner and then it is bed time to ended up this first day of diving.
DAY 3 – Monday 2nd April
This morning we wake up at 6:15am at Al Qibliyah island, at 6:45am we ring the bell for our first briefing, Al Qibliyah Rock. During this dive we saw: groups of banner fish, Ehrenberg’s snapper, doublebar bream, zebra bream, collared butterflyfish; yellow boxfish, and the famous dragon moray. Back on the boat, it breakfasts time. At 10:30am we ring the bell for the second briefing of the day: Gotta Qibliyah. We encounter: giant porcupine fish; semicircle angelfish; groups of white barred, goldspotted sweet lips. We meet like last week a clown triggerfish, so it seems that we have a new resident on Gotta. After lunch and some rest at 2:30pm we ring the bell for the afternoon dive. We gave the possibility for our guest who wish to repeat Al Qibliyah rock this afternoon. For those who did it, it was the best choose, the dive was super lovely we saw schools of banner fish, goat fish, sweetlips, giant sweetlips, platax, snapper, trevally. Back on the boat the famous Aggressor cake is waiting Cornelia to celebrated her 300th dives. Congratulation Cornelia! At 6:30pm we ring the bell for our first night dive of the week, directly from the back of the boat. Tonight Canal garden offered us: flat head; dorid; pale glossodorid; baby hooded cluttlefish; reef hermit crab; Grey’s cowrie. Back on the boat it is dinner time, we also move the boat in the direction of Fish highway, our first dive spot tomorrow morning, situated at 1h30 navigation from Qibliyah.
This morning we woke up anchored at Fish highway. At 6:45am we ring the bell for the dive briefing. Fish highway was surprising quiet this morning, we did not not even one fusilier (normally by thousand). But even without them we had a really nice dive, we encounter: leopard shark; giant moray; grouper; colorful broccoli soft coral; redtooth triggerfish; sleek unicornfish. Back on the boat it is breakfast time. At 10:30am we ring the bell for our second briefing of the day: angry grouper. Angry grouper was like fish highway, not even one fusiliers! But still we could see the redtooth triggerfish like dancing in all the direction; group of golden spadefish; a big redmouth grouper; a group of red sea needlefish; one big cow-tail stingray and pointed-nose stingray laying on the sand beside each other. Back on the boat it is lunch time, in the same time we are moving in the direction of Schmies island where we are going to dive for the rest of the day. At 2:30pm we ring the bell for our afternoon dive Schmies fingers directly from the back of the boat. This dive was a nice enjoyable dive, with a really good visibility, we were able to see: dragon moray; marble shrimp; crocodile fish; octopus; groups of minstrel sweetlips, yellowfin goatfish, lunar fusilier all mixed together. Back on the boat, we ate waiting till 6:30pm for our night dive briefing. This night dive was also really rich, we encounter: tarry puffer; octopus; cuttle fish; blue spotted stingray; dragon moray; nose pointed stingray; hunting honeycomb moray; flyfish. Back on the boat it is dinner time. Tonight we are going to spend the night at Schmies.
DAY 5 – Wednesday 4thApril
At 6:45am we ring the bell for our first dive briefing, this morning we are going to do an exploration dive on Anemone reef. We find out this new dive site few weeks ago, and decided to share it with our guests and see what it can offer us. During this dive we encounter: leopard shark; black spotted stingray; nose pointed stingray; cloud of fusiliers and redtooth triggerfish. Back on the boat, the breakfast is waiting for us. After a break at 10:30am, we ring the bell for our next dive, Gotta Schmies. During this dive we encounter: eagle ray; big red-mouth grouper; a group of giant sweetlips; talang queenfish; rainbow runner; cow-tail stingray; and a huge cloud of fusiliers to keep us busy for our safety stop. Back on the boat we started to move in the direction of Al Sawda island situated at 2hours navigation. At 2:30pm we ring the bell for our afternoon dive Coral garden. During this dive we saw: crocodile fish; golden trevally; Arabian butterflyfish; golden spadefish. Back on the boat after a quick afternoon snack some of our guests went by tender having a walk on the island. At 6:30 we ring the bell for our night dive, canal garden again. Tonight we could encounter: cornet fish, saron shrimp, juvenile redmouth grouper; striped eel catfish; octopus; blues potted stingray. Back on the boat it is dinner time, in the same time we started to move in the direction of Al Qibliyah island for our day of diving tomorrow.
DAY 6 – Thursday 5thApril
This morning we woke up at 6:15am beside Al Hasikiyah island, the western island of the archipelago. At 6:45 we ring the bell for our first dive of the day, The corner. During this dive we had the happy surprise to encounter a bowmouth wedgefish with his group of pilotfish, but we also get: fusiliers, black spotted stingray; yellowmouth moray; ocelot grouper; striped eel catfish; and cloud of tiny sardine for our safety stop. Back on the boat it is breakfast time. At 10:30am we ring the bell for the second briefing The Arch. During this dive we saw the usual cloud of glass fish; giant sweetlips; one big barracuda; one giant trevally hunting. Back on the boat it is lunch time. After some rest at 2:30pm we ring the bell for our afternoon dive The Cave. During this dive we encounter: group of giant sweetlips, golden trevally; barracuda; stingray; potato grouper. Back on the boat it is snack time. At 6:30pm we ring the bell for the night dive, we jumped directly from the back of the boat. During this dive we saw: Spanish dancer; stone fish; lamella; trapeze horse conch; slipper lobster; splendid spooner. Back on the boat it is dinner time, and also time for us to leave the Hallaniyat’s islands and do our navigation to the mainland. After dinner, like every Thursday we all gathered in the salon to watch the video of the week.
DAY 7 – Friday 6thApril
This morning we wake up at 6:15am in front of Mirbat. At 6:45am we ring the bell for our first dive: The Marriott wreck. Like always, it was a busy morning for the fish on the wreck. We encounter: vanikoro sweeper; group of bronze-striped gunt, yellowfin goatfish; brown eel cat fish; blue spotted stingray; crocodile fish; blackspotted sweetlips. Back on the boat, it is breakfast time. Our two next dives are going to be at Ras Mirbat. During this two dives, despite a bad visibility we saw: a massive male turtle; groups of barracuda; toadfish (bifax lacinia); slipper lobster; marble shrimp; yellowmargin moray; bluestripe pipefish; cave cleaner shrimp. After our third dive we left Mirbat to Juweira’s marina. At 4:30pm it is cocktail party, time to celebrated this week of diving and thank you all our guests for joining us this week aboard The Oman Aggressor, and we hope to all see you again.
Your Oman Aggressor Crew.
Log Date: April 7, 2018
Entry by: Oman Aggressor Crew