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Asian Diver Issue 1/2014

Times of your Life

After someone asked, “When’s the best time to dive in Asia?”, it immediately prompted the theme for this issue. The answer, of course, is all year round, if you know where to go.

The weather has gone a bit wonky over the years, so we’ve taken the age old dive seasons across the region with a pinch of salt… you know, give or take a few weeks each way. The team at Asian Diver had a lot of enlightening moments this issue, matching up some unique sites and regions with the months of the year. Have fun going through them and we wish you even greater diving bliss this New Year across Asia Pacific, the expanse Asian Diver is proud to call home.

Keep it real, keep it fun, keep it compelling…

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Contents

NORTH ASIA – Russia
White Sea Watch: Oceanography inquest

By Bogdana Vashchenko and Viktor Lyagushkin (photos)

Post-glacial uplift at the White Sea – the only frozen sea in Europe – continues at four millimetres a year, such that its bays have separated from the sea and turn into extraordinary lakes. With poisonous hydrogen sulfide lingering at just seven metres deep, read on to discover what marine biologists are just realising?

EAST ASIA - Taiwan
Diving Taiwan: Some great plunging moments

By Yen-yi Lee

On the northeast coast of Taiwan lies Long Dong Bay, a bona fide secret haven for macro diving enthusiasts. During summers, it uncovers an abundance of nudibranchs, frogfish and basket star shrimps. Looking south, we also discover Green Island where the world’s largest and oldest living coral resides.

PACIFIC - Fiji
Shark Days: Thrill of a lifetime

By Aaron Wong

Just in the vicinity of Beqa Island, an inconspicuous buoy marks a unique dive site known as Bistro. This is where humongous bull sharks and silver tips toe the line and when they hover within inches away from the diver’s face, staying still suddenly becomes a difficult thing to do.

SOUTHEAST ASIA - Indonesia
It’s good all year round: Seasons of Raja Ampat

By Selen Yavuzdogan and Tunc Yavuzdogan (photos)

Low visibility, but extremely rich pelagic sightings or perfect visibility, with a sharp decline in plankton, each season in Raja Ampat brings different spectacles for the special interest diver. Nonetheless, being in the middle of the Coral Triangle puts one in good stead for exceptional marine diversity either side of the year.

GONE TEK
Gearing up and teamwork: Prepping towards a world record

By Will Goodman and Simon Liddiard (text) and Ari Martinez (photos)

Descending solo to a harrowing depth of 220m demands daily practice dives on Will Goodman’s JJ CCR, focusing hard on equipment malfunction drills as well. He also has to make a decision about diving with no gauges at all, a controversial equipment configuration that disallows the diver to spot a low on gas situation before it occurs…. This issue, Asian Diver continues its report on the saga of a world record attempt.

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On The Cover

Blenny belvedere: Peekaboo at 82.5K, one of Taiwan’s best-kept secrets at Long Dong, northeast Taiwan