Exploratory Safari Diary

Day three

We awake on the morning of the third day to find that the wind has dropped to nothing and the conditions are perfect for making our wreck dive. After careful analysis of our gases and a final review of our dive plans we set off, I have been waiting to make this dive for 11 months.

A successful wreck dive

Because the weather is fantastic Sonia manages to put a line directly onto the stern area of the wreck itself. As we make our descent the visibility is awesome and already we can look down the length of the wreck and see where it splits at 50m. The stern area is basically upside down but where the wrecks splits the bow section is actually completely on its side. We keep descending but surprisingly the bottom comes to us earlier than we expected! Scraping the sea bed around the bow our computers read 70m, we have hit the bottom! My estimation was not that far off! Swimming onto the open deck side of the wreck out comes my wet note pad and I start to map the wreck. With time constraints against us the sketch was very simplistic but gives the main structural points of interest.

The visibility was around 30m and looking up I could see Shaun hanging over the split area with a big smile on his face. The wreck appears to be in quite good condition. We do not make any penetration of the wreck this time, that will have to wait until our next trip! But at least now we know where to go.

Side view of wreck at approx 60m

The computers signal to us that our time here is almost up and we begin to make our ascent following the length of the wreck up into the shallow waters. Our decompression time flew by relatively quickly and before we knew it we were back on the boat with big smiles. After breakfast we began to travel back up in northerly direction. There is nothing better than off gassing in a cool water Jacuzzi, it’s a hard life sometimes.

In the afternoon I succumbed to my curiosity and I used the Satellite phone to try to find out the current situation in Europe. Unfortunately there was no good news to be had. Most of Europe’s air spaces were still closed and so my fiancé was now on a 15 hour ferry journey from Hull to Belgium! Not a happy man. Of course to make him feel better I told him the safari was rubbish!! No need to rub salt in the wounds!

Have I mentioned before that we have not seen any other boats for two days now!

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