It was in September 2010, that my girlfriend and I had almost given up on our search for a new house and booked ourselves a holiday to Marsa Alam, Egypt. Of course Marieke found the perfect resort, which featured a long pier (long as in a 15 minutes walk) which dropped you right off the coral edge. Depth’s starting at 10 meters and gradually declining to 25-30 meters over a very wide span of the coast. So enough territory for us to explore by means of freediving.
I almost couldn’t go freediving during that holiday as I depended on a surgery that was planned only a few weeks before our departure, but luckily my recovery was very speedy and I was able to explore the depth’s of the sea. The marine life that was present on the house reef was just immense, the tourism really didn’t yet find this spot to ruin it for the marine life.
Our dream was to encounter dolphins in the wild and had been to places where the possibilities of that happening were present, but actually never encountered them. Our perseverance was definitely not unanswered as the 2nd day came and we ran into our first school of dolphins at the housereef. A rather small group (about 15 or so dolphins) passed by us when we resurfaced from a freedive. Surprised and overjoyed as we were I actually got some footage from them passing through the bay. Later in the holiday we had our second encounter with a large group of about 60 dolphins. I am glad to have freediving fins, because wow they are fast. As fast as they came, they disappeared into the distant blue, trying to keep up with them felt like running a marathon with a pair C4’s on my feet :).
Furthermore we encountered a wide variety of marine life just at the house reef, including; turtles, baracuda’s, a guitar shark, a blacktip reef shark, starry puffers, spade fishes, octopuses,moray’s and a lot more. It was a joy to be freediving there. For both me and Marieke we enjoyed the freediving there and the depths were more than enough for our satisfaction. Since our last trip to Cuba, Marieke had shown a great improvement to reach depth’s of 25+ meters and proved that overtime her abilities were still there.
Besides the freediving, we also try and up our scuba game every time we’ve got the opportunity. With our main goal of finally reaching a certain level for scuba which could take us to the more advanced diving places. Because currently it feels like we’re for ever stuck at the coastal stuff… we’d really have loved to dive at elphin stone, but this was not possible due to this problem. Never the less we booked our share of scuba dives and enjoyed the wide variety of marine life as well. During the scuba we encountered a guitar shark, some squids, a juvenile napoleon and a lot more. The team of scuba divers from the resort were very friendly and spotted our relaxed way of diving which was not what they regularly encounter, a nice compliment for the both of us.
Just an amazing week full of enjoyment for the sea and marine life, of course with a good deal of relaxing and resting as well. With a fully charged battery we came back from our holiday and about 3 weeks after we were home we signed a contract for the dream house we were looking for. Two of our dreams within the timespan of a month, what more to ask for…. encountering dolphins and our own house.
you can find a few of the pictures we shot underwater here on my facebook page.
For those of you wondering why updating the sharkbait site has been low; the house & surgery have played a role, but on top of that I’ve developed a 2nd and 3rd addiction in the forms of snowboarding and skateboarding.