It has been over a week since our arrival in Kea so it is past time we made a little report about our expedition so far.
After completing all preparations and training dives, our first full-scale dive was to SS Burdigala. We haven’t seen the beauty since last year and it was good to see her again. SS Burdigala – a lovely steamship with a very sad life story. She also sank in November 1916, just about a week before Britannic. We performed a dive to Burdigala, employing both Tritons and followed by the technical divers team.
Our first dive to Britannic of 2016 took place on Saturday 11th of June, by coincidence, it is also the day of birth of the world-known marine explorer Captain Jaques-Yeves Cousteau. And what is even more fascinating that he was the one, who discovered Britannic’s wreck 40 years ago. 40 years ago, in 1976 RV Calypso and her crew returned to Kea after having found some large object on the seabed (using the side sonar – brand new technology back then) in November 1975. On the 10th of July 1976, Captain Cousteau’s team made a first in history dive to HMHS Britannic. They had some technical issues that time so they had to leave Kea for some time, only to return in September to conduct a full-scale expedition, exploring every bit of it as much as technology allowed it those days.
So there we were, U-Boat Navigator’s crew with subs, Explorers Club technical divers, geared up to their teeth, two ROVs and BBC reporters aboard Triton 3300/3 with all their filming equipment.
Today we are much more advanced equipment-wise than Cousteau’s expedition so we are able to share all the breathtaking photos and videos that we take underwater. We’ve dedicated the whole week to her majesty HMHS Britannic and loved every minute we were able to spend on the wreck.
It was a great pleasure working with such an experienced diving team on our “The mystery of Britannic” Project, dedicated to 100 years anniversary of Britannic’s sinking.
Special thanks to the two members of “Explorers Club”, Richie Kohler and Evan Kovacs and other great professionals – Michael Barnette, Richard Stivenson, Edorado Pavia and Leigh Bishop.
We had a great pleasure having aboard all the guests – Britannic wreck owner and her historian Simon Mills, a Mayor of the Kea island, local Diving Club representatives and other great people.
A special thank you to Kostas Thoctarides for helping us with organization of the Britannic Expedition 2016 and giving advice on the Greek wrecks in general.
On Saturday, 18th of June U-Boat Navigator is off to her next stop within the Expedition 2016.