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Expedition Ocean Vision 1, to the Northern Red Sea
16 - 30 June 2008
This is a short summary of the full diving expedition report.
The objectives of Expedition Ocean Vision 1 were:
1. Conduct underwater marine conservation filming at dive sites in the Ras Mohammed National Park and the Strait of Tiran
2. Undertake dive training as appropriate
3. Conduct recreational dives for experience
All objectives were met in full.
Expedition Ocean Vision 1 was planned in 3 phases:
EOV1 Phase 1 - Planning and Procurement.
EOV1 Phase 2 - Deployment and Filming.
EOV1 Phase 3 - Video Production & Distribution.
As a preliminary PROJECT OCEAN VISION marine conservation expedition, only two team members traveled from the UK, Carol (Team Leader) and Courtney (Diving Officer and Cameraman). Surface support and logistics were obtained in theatre.
The main preparation issues were travel and accommodation, booked through Thomas Cook and equipment procurement, through Cameras Underwater in London. Both subjects addressed below.
It was decided that the team would dive using Nitrox (EANx32) whenever possible, so Carol completed self-study using the PADI Nitrox Diver Manual, to complete the course at the first opportunity in Egypt. This was successfully undertaken.
Air travel and accommodation at The Sharm Inn Amarein on a B&B basis was booked with Thomas Cook at a cost of £1127.98 including an additional baggage allowance of 5kg, which was required as the basic allowance was only 15kg each. Parking at Luton Airport cost £120.00.
An initial £E5,000 (Egyptian Pounds) were purchased at a cost of £516.26 and an additional £E2,000 were purchased in theatre at £196.03. Cash was used for transfers, lunches, National Park fees, dinners, water, drinks and hospitality. In addition, entry visas were purchased at Sharm el Sheikh Airport at $25US each - while these are not strictly required for entry into Egypt, they are necessary by law to leave the Sharm el Sheikh area, including going to the Ras Mohammed National Park.
The final hotel bill was £583.00, dinners, water and drinks. The cost of the diving was £1,200, including the cost of the Nitrox course, certification fee and the additional cost of using nitrox throughout the majority of the expedition. The total cost was approximately £3,770.00.
The only additional equipment required was an underwater video camera housing, supplied by Ikelite (#6038.82), at a cost of £759.00 including VAT.
Two malfunctions were detected during pre-deployment testing: a faulty image reversing circuit and a cracked image mirror. Both were replaced by Ikelite in time for the expedition. Both team members took all their own dive equipment, which weighed in at 30kg.
All equipment remained serviceable throughout the expedition.
16 Jun 08 Travel to Luton. Flight: Luton - Sharm el Sheikh
17 Jun 08 Check in with Camel Dive. Shakedown dive at Camel Dive Club's House Reef - good reef, but shaded in the afternoon. Video and photographic equipment checked out. Review of marine conservation objectives.
18 Jun 08 Diving from President II. 2 filming dives: Temple and Ras Katy. Lessons: The exciting dive sites don't always yield the best video.
19 Jun 08 Diving from Admiral. 2 filming dives: Jackson Reef and Woodhouse Reef. Lessons: Best to enter water with camera - reduced handling risks, quicker and no apparent problems with entry.
20 Jun 08 Diving from Falcon Suez. 2 filming dives: Shark & Yolanda Reefs and Ras Za'atar. Lessons: Know when the camera is running!
21 Jun 08 Diving from Falcon Suez. 2 filming dives: both on Jackson Reef, first on the North side, second at the coral garden. Lessons: Working against strong currents with camera equipment is futile. Good abort of failed DSMB deployment.
22 Jun 08 Down Day - no diving. Carol Nitrox exam
23 Jun 08 Diving from Falcon Suez. 2 filming dives: Jackson Reef and Gordon Reef. Lessons: Redo white balance before every shot where possible.
24 Jun 08 Diving from Sehss. 2 filming dives: Shark & Yolanda Reef and the Dunraven (very strong current). Lessons: No matter how hard the dive, always watch your buddy.
25 Jun 08 Diving from President II. 2 filming dives: Ghamila Reef (Sinai side of the Strait of Tiran) and Woodhouse. One evening/night dive at Turtle Bay (Camel House Reef). Lessons: Try everything.
26 Jun 08 Dive Boat: Falcon Suez. 2 filming dives: Ras Nasrani and Gordon Reef. Lessons: Keep watching the blue for the big stuff.
27 Jun 08 Diving from Falcon Suez. 2 filming dives: Jackfish Alley and Shark & Yolanda. Lessons: If you don't want to go where the current's flowing, stay out of the current.
29 Jun 08 Down day, no diving before return flight to UK. Checked out of Camel Dive, debriefed on previous day's events. Overall, surface support had been excellent, especially Andrew. Marine conservation objectives met.
30 Jun 08 Return to UK.
EOV1 Phase 2 complete.
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|A few of our pictures from Expedition Ocean Vision 1|
|Coral: EOV1 Video Diary||Two Minutes on Hard Coral|
|A Short Essay on Coral||Expedition Ocean Vision 2|
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