Dive Site: Beacon Rock & Dunraven, The Red Sea, Egypt

Date: 05 October 2015
Visibility: 20+m
Water Temp: 29°C
Max Depth: 24.9m
Bottom Time: 48mins

Beacon Rock and Dunraven is a reef and wreck dive that, for me, offers the best of both worlds.  This was the first wreck dive of our liveaboard, and a really great introduction.

The SS Dunraven was a ship powered by both steam and sail.  She capsized in the Suez Canal in 1876, whilst laden with a cargo of timer and steel.  Having lain in 25m of water for almost 140 years, the wreck is quite broken up, and has a large amount of soft and hard corals growing up on and around her.  This is what makes it a great dive; seeing the natural world overtake a man-made wreck shows just how resilient and resourceful nature is.

Dropping straight off the back of the liveaboard, we quickly descended, and after a short swim came up to the stern of the wreck.  Swimming past the propellor, we then turned and entered the main hull of the ship, and into what was once the boiler and engine room. With it being so broken up, we hardly needed our torches, and just bimbled through the wreck, taking note of the soft corals growing up from the ship’s skeleton.  A school of glass fish is resident at the exit of the hull here.  Swimming around the wreck, we found a couple of blue-spotted ray digging in the sand looking for food, and clown fish protecting their homes.

The route back towards the boat took us over the reef on Beacon Rock.  This reef was so pretty that we ended up hanging around at around 10 metres, waiting for the marine life to come to us.  It also gave us a great opportunity to practice with the camera; and Rae even gave it a go (hence a picture of me!).  After spending a good while hanging around the corals, watching a free-swimming moray eel flit between different parts of the reef, we headed up for our safety stop, and back to the boat.

Beacon Rock and Dunraven proved to be a really pleasant dive, and has definitely taught us what types of wreck dive we prefer; definitely those that have been reclaimed by nature, rather than the recently sunk, or devoid of life.

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