Rab Ronaldsons Gopro Videos

Although Rab is not a club member we often dive with him localy and on trips further afield. He takes some stuning photo's and often puts together short videos of dives. So here's his Youtube Channel   https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCOxT2idTjZn849C-WA31feA

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Um el Faroud

Three club members have now dived this wreck in Malta, Jonathan,Steve & Sarah

The Um El Faroud was a 10,000 ton Libyan owned single screw motor tanker. Following a gas explosion
during maintenance work in 1995, she was scuttled off the coast of Malta as an artificial reef and diving
She was built in 1969 at Smith Dock Co. Ltd, Middlesbrough, England and was owned by the General
National Maritime Transport Company, Tripoli (GNMTC). She had been operating between Italy and
Libya carrying refined fuel up to 1 February 1995. On 3 February 1995 she was docked at No.3 Dock of
Malta dry docks. During the night of 3 February an explosion occurred in No.3 centre tank and nine
shipyard workers lost their lives.
The vessel suffered structural deformation and, following inspection and survey, was considered a total
write-off. She occupied the dock in the harbor of Valletta for three years until it was decided that the
best option to utilize her remaining value was to tow her to sea and scuttle her as an artificial reef in
The wreck sits upright on the sandy seabed southwest of Wied iz-Zurrieq near Qrendi. The Um El
Faroud weighs 10,000 tons and is 115 metres (377 ft) long. The depth to the top of the bridge is 18 metres
(59 ft) and 25 metres (82 ft) to the main deck. Scuba divers might come across some squid and
barracudas at the stern. The wreck can be entered fairly easily, but due to its size, this should be
restricted only to divers with advanced wreck diving training.
The vessel measures 109.53 metres (359.4 ft) in length, and has a beam of 15.5 metres (51 ft); the height of
the vessel from keel to funnel top is approximately 22 metres (72 ft). After a bad storm in winter 2005/6
the ship has now broken in two.


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Dive at Los Arcos, Calpe


IMG 5176 107After an abortive dive at El Moraig on Tuesday due to my inflator free flowing (it was serviced only a month ago) Paul drove us out to the Penon, Calpe. There was a slight swell, but the visibility was exceptional at least 20 metres in the sunxhine. We spotted the arches through the crystal clear water and dropped anchor at about 10 metres. Gary and I got in the water and were able to see hundreds of fish just hanging near the roof of one of the arches. We.saw lots of Cardinal and a small Scorpion perched on a rock. Found a 3Kg weight and a couple of Abolone shells This was turning into a really great dive, On our return to the boat on a NW heading  a small (.5 m) ray suddenly popped up off the sea bed, paused then flew off at great speed.  Finned straight to the anchor line and did a safety stop at 6m.

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Benidorm Island November 10th 2012

After Thursdays postponement due to heavy swell, Paul re-booked the dive with Poseidon in Benidorm(See Paul's Gallery). Would  the weather hold? Would it be too cold? It was overcast when the six of us got there, but the sea was flat. The plan was to make two dives and as the first boat load had other divers on board who would only be doing one dive, the clubs surface interval would include a trip back to the harbour to let the other divers off and us to pick up replacement cylinders. I've lost one of my thin gloves, so tried to use my other pair which are considerably thicker. I could get one on, but needed assistance with the left hand. Having made it to the sea bed I realised that part of my hood must have been beneath the skirt of my mask (I certainly haven't got any hair to get in the way). The rest of the dive required the occaisional mask clear, but not serious. I removed my left glove as it was easier to complete a mask clear without it. Possibly I should have surfaced from 11metres to the boat to sort out the mask problem, but that always leaves your buddy, and the rest of the team wondering if it's something serious. Any ideas for a signal indicating that you need to surface to get dressed again? Buddy pairs on this first dive were :- Paul & Jonathan; Chris & Bill ; Bob & Jane. We decended from the boat on the South side of the Island which is furthest from the  coast. Visibility was fair, probably 10-15 metres, and considering the previous weeks weather not too bad. I wish my fish identification skills were better, then I could say with certainty all that we saw. Eels Moray & Conga were plentyful. They don't seem to like my new torch, but there again neither did Paul as I blinded him while he was trying to take a picture of us during the second dive as Chris,Bill and I posed inside a swim through. Much waving of hands at me made me realise where the beam was pointed. After the change over Bill had asked where he might find a toilet, our  boat handler Susi informed him that she would slow the boat after we had headed out to sea again, and he could stand at the back of the boat and do his business there. Bill had a doubtful look on his face, but the lass suggested to him that if he had a problem achieving this task the she would happily give him a hand. It's just as well there was another 15 mins till we got back in the water as we were laughing so much at her suggestion, and the look on Bill's face.

This dive we were on the North side of the Island, and I made sure my mask sealed properly. At one point I sat on the side of the island and watched an enormous shoal of fish, possibly thousands turning and twisting around in front of me with Barracuda within the ball perhaps waiting for the right moment to have a spot of lunch. I noticed the chill getting through my 5mm suit about 15 minutes into the second dive, but I ignored it upto the point when Chris indicated to me that he was getting chilled about 30 minutes after we got in the water. We were close to the surface on a rock possibly 5metres; the right time for the safety stop, and Paul to take a couple more shots for the album. We surfaced and climbed back into the hard boat using the ladder, which is a bit more sedate than the flying seal method we use on the side of the club RIB. Tired, but  happy with 2 good dives we enjoyed the trip back the harbour in the sun and a  Spanish flask of  local Moscadet wine which we handed round, it sure gets rid of the salt and gives the impression of a bit of warmth. Having showered and rinsed off our kit, we left it to dry in the sun and went to enjoy a  €10 Menu del Dia  in the restaurant across the road.

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