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Dive logs for Vance Stevens, P.A.D.I. Open Water SCUBA Instructor #64181

Oman, Sawadi Beach Resort, July 27-28, 2000
Dives 352 to 355


Diving with: Moonlight Divers at Sawadi Beach Resort
Dive site: Damaniyites
Dive buddies: Glenn Stevens and Russell Bowen
Others in dive party: Naseeb runs the boats / dive shop

Conditions: day 1: mild seas

Water Temp: 23°C below 12 meters

Visibility: 3-4 meters at worst; 10 meters at best

Wetsuit combo: lycra suit and typhoon top

Weight: needed: 6 kg

Dive 352, July 27, 2000

Data (left computer in Abu Dhabi):

Time started: 10:21
Max depth: 26 meters
Dive time: 00:15 at 26 m.; 9 at 16 m. (as per profile so far).; 16 min. at 12 meters
Min Temp: 23 °C (est.)
Nitrox 21% (normal air), No stop

Hayut Island, with the Oman military post

Started off diving into a crowd who’d gone down before us.  Scurried to get ahead of them in case there were any leopard sharks further up and found out later they were gathered around a sting ray.  These divers also reported seeing turtles and sea snakes.  Us, we wandered along at depth for most of 15 min peering hopefully into the gloom until coming upon a honeycomb moray sprawled lengthwise under an outcrop.  This set the tone for our enjoyment of the remainder of the dive, since we say more of those big honeycombs and other morays but not much else in the way of big fish.  We saw a sweet lips and a plethora of the usual little reef fishies, and some attractive soft purple and blue and orange corals, but other than fair vis and pretty diving, nothing great.  Russell ran out of air after 40 min and Glenn was underweighted in an unfamiliar wetsuit so when Russell went up, Glenn joined him inadvertently, and we couldn’t get Glenn weighted and down fast enough to continue the dive, with ten min. remaining before our 50 min. was up.  By then the boat that picked up Russell had drifted off the shallow dive spot, and I realized that when I saw Glenn’s spare weight go fluttering into the depths.

Time out: 11:01
Surface Interval: 1 hour 52 minutes

During snorkel at interval, saw a resting brown speckled ray, a moray, a trigger fish trying to act nonchalant and then go after little fish that always escaped, and a gobie with a shrimp doing construction work

Dive 353, July 27, 2000


Garden of Eden corner, very poor vis for Garden of Eden

Planned dives using wheel; assuming we’re C divers at this point

Time started: 12:53
Max depth: 18 meters
Dive time: 00:30 at 15-18 m.; 20 min at 12 m. (as per profile)
Min Temp: 23 °C (est.)
Nitrox 21% (normal air), No stop

This dive started out with shit vis, really bad, hard enough to see each other let alone much in the water.  We were to run up to a corner to the east and turn it south, and it’s a good thing we took bearings, because we were on them most of the way to the corner. We gave ourselves 30 min at depth and we spent this time running over rubble at 16 to 18 meters on the lookout for leopard sharks of course, and the black tips Naseeb said might be there, but of course, no way to see outlyers in the murk.  So we headed in and found some alcoves and other divers, and then it got more interesting but cold till we multileveled above the thermocline at 12 meters.  Finally we turned the corner into warm water and found clear vis for the last ten minutes of the dive.  Here a sting ray wafted in front of us, and further ahead a honeycomb caught my eye, and there turned out to be a sting ray in the rock behind him.  The rocks were full of honeycomb and grey morays, and ahead I saw a turtle, which swam off when I clacked.  This was good leopard shark land, with boulders and coral strewn about a sand surface in green water, but we ran out of time before we ran out of air.  I insisted we surface, but when we did there was no boat, and when the boat appeared other divers weren’t on it, so no one had been following the clocks all that closely.  So it turned out to be a great dive, but only in the last ten minutes.

Hotel Log: The Sawadi Beach Resort has some odd things about it.  When you eat in the coffee shop restaurant, great buffet, but the phone rings time after time in the most irritating ring that goes on and on because there’s only one staff person there and if he’s busy or has stepped out a minute, then the ringing is like a drilling.  First person in the shower figures out when the water comes cold that there must be a switch on the wall somewhere, which there is.  Too bad there’s not a note about it so you would know to switch on the hot water before your shower.  The a/c at night goes on and off at ten minute intervals, and there’s a note on the control to leave it set at 23.  You can’t figure out in the middle of the night how to work the remote.  The dive package is now breakfast, dinner and snacks on the boat.  Snack on the boat is a piece of cake.  Leaves gaps by dinnertime.  And of course, there’s the unhappy hour which starts just before you can possibly get your dive gear cleaned.  No beer is supposed to be served from 3 to 6.  But the bar staff by the pool have always agreed to serve a “last call” for us salty mouthed divers even if we miss the 3 p.m. deadline by 15 min.  They have to get an ok from a manager, though.

Dive 354, July 28, 2000


Planned dives using wheel; we’d planned to go 26 but the dive site was changed as we were about to kit up from (?)ed Island to the back side of Jun and as far as possible to the last rock to the east and then diving east from there along the submerged reef, and this dive was just 22 meters.

Time started:
Max depth: 22 meters
Dive time: 50 min
Min Temp: 23 °C (est.)
Nitrox 21% (normal air), No stop

On this one, Bertrand joined Russell and Glenn and I.  This was a rather nice dive.  We skirted at depth along the 22 meter point finding things like flounder and morays.  The best find was a huge bull ray resting until we came along and disturbed it, though it took its time moving away from us.  40 min into the dive Bertrand surfaced and waved goodbye and Glenn and Russell and I continued at 16 meters on the top of the reef.  It was lovely up there with current bringing in lots of barracuda, and a feather tailed ray gliding along.  We circled among the barracuda till time to come up ourselves.  This was the best of our dives.

Dive 355, July 28, 2000


Planned dives using wheel; started dive as C divers with 20 min at 22 meters, 15 min at 16 meters, 50 min at 12

Time started: 12:55
Max depth: 20 meters
Dive time:  45 min
Min Temp: 23 °C (est.)
Nitrox 21% (normal air), No stop

We returned to (?)ed island after the surface interval, where we should have dived that morning.  By now we were at slack tide and this site, which has always been hopping every time I visited it, was kinda tame without current.  I’ve always seen leopard sharks here but not this time.

One nice find was two big honeycomb morays poking like puppy dogs from a rock.  Bertrand stopped to take a picture.  Other than a lot more rays there wasn’t much else to see besides pretty fish and corals.

Vance Stevens, |
August 18, 2000 in Word 2000 (by mistake)

Readers, let me know if you find broken links.  Word 2000 reverses slashes of its own volition I think so that it can follow paths that are in this way rendered un-navigable by Netscape.  My attempts to change them back in Word are automatically undone by this rather poor web editing tool.  I certainly don’t appreciate the extra work this causes me nor the inconvenience it causes my readers, but let me know if you encounter any of these so I can fix them in a decent web editor.  Thanks, Vance