From October 4th to 7th Stefan Steuerer, Birgit Rainer, Peter Plattner, Andreas Guggenbichler and me went to Liguria, initiated by Stefan, to dive the wreck of the Haven. Peter organized in the days before the dives with the diveshop www.havendiving.it and the appartment in Arenzano. In the days advance we mixed our gases for the planned dives and did the teamplanning. Stefan did with Andreas training dives for a Trimix - class, Birgit and Peter wanted to dive with a bottom stage and I planned with Klaus to do scooter - dives at the wreck. Unfortunately Klaus became sick a few days before we went and couldn´t come along. For that I left my scooter at home and did my dives with Birgit and Peter.
the dives at the Haven were planned for monday and tuesday and for sunday we organized via mail two dives with Bruno from Portofino Divers in Sta. Margharita Ligure. The drive from Innsbruck to Arenzano on saturday evening went flawlessly and around 21:30 we arrived at our appartment Posto di Fragole and went immediately to bed.
Sunday - Sta. Margharita Ligure
On sunday morning we got up at 06:00, because we had to be at 08:00 in Sta. Margharita at the diveshop of Bruno. the first dive should be at the wreck of the KT di Sestre / UJ 2216. We shared the boat with a group of italian divers who dove the DIR system as well. The maximum depth was 52m, visibility about 15m and we had no current. The water temperature was 16 degrees at depth and 20 degrees at the last decostops - all in all best conditions. During our 20 minutes bottom time we had enough time to take a look at the superstructure and due to the good visibility we wouldn´t have needed our lights. Stefan and me knew the wreck from our Tech 1 class in summer, but we could enjoy the wreck this time much more and even the tons of fisch at the wreck. The ascent and the deco went without any further notice, only the swell at the 6m stop was a bit disturbing.
We went back to Sta. Margharita and took lunch, because Bruno had another group for a trip. Around 15:30 we went with fresh power to another spot in the national park and were amazed by the diversity of the underwaterworld of the mediterranian sea. We were awaited by a drop off full of violett sea fans, hanging full with clutch of dogfish, goliath groupers came along and moray eels spotted out of the reef.
With a lot of impressions we went back to Sta. Margharita, where we were happy enough to get from the boat, because the sea was very rough we we were completely shaken. After we said goodbye to Bruno, we went to Arenzano and could drop our equipment at the diveshop of Pipo and prepare for the next day. We took our dinner in the marina of Arenzano, just next to the diveshop and after back to our appartment.
Monday - Haven
After a wonderful breakfast at our appartment at Posto di Fragole, we met at 08:30 at the diveshop to load our equipment on the boat and to don our suits. Beside us was another group of tech divers from Germany on board and the mandatory guides, to dive the Haven. With the equipment and all together 10 people on board, it got a bit narrow. For we should dive first, we were carrying our rigs on our back, but this should be no problem, because we only went for 15 minutes and you can rest the tanks at the bulge of the boat. We dobve in two groups: Stefan with Andreas and Birgit with Peter and me. Out guide told us to decent first, he would in the meantime install the decorig with a safetybottle, and after that come to a short visit at depth to ascent the for his deco. So we had not to adapt our diveplan to him and his buddy, but could exploit fully our bottom time.
We descended at one of the three shotlines to the top of the superstructure at 34m and then at the frontside of the bridge to the maindeck in 56m depth. From there we went to starboard and along the superstructure direction stern.
At the backside of the superstructure took Peter the way through the workshop passageway, where still a bench vice is at the wall and a lot of gastanks, which were there stored. In the middle of the passageway we ascended and went slowly to the upper part of the superstructure. After totally 25 minutes bottom time we started wilth the final ascent and stared during the deep deco stops at the vast size of the wreck. With a total widh of 51m is the Haven as wide as some other wreck in toatal length. The height reaches from the bottom at 80m up to 32m, where the highes parts of the superstructure were cut, to be no longer a problem for navigation.
Even at this dive we had perfect conditions: 20 degrees watertemperature at deco, visibility about 20m and no current at all. After 80 minutes divetime we were all out of the water and went very enthousiastic back to the diveshop. Because we mixed all our gasses at home, we just had to top off our decotanks to have them full for the next day. Pipo placed in typical italian manner his diveshop at our proposal, by giving us his key, telling us how to run the compressor and that we should meet tomorrow morning at 09:30. Then he said "ciao" and left us a little bit astounded.
While Stefan did a theory lesson with Andreas for his trimix class, Birgit, Peter and I took a walk through Arenzano. In the evening we took it easy and did a little bit of talk shop, before we felt asleep.
Tuesday - 2nd dive at the Haven
After the already mentioned delightful breakfast, we were at 09:30 at the diveshop and like yesterday we put our equipment at the boat and went at 10:30 to the wreck. Again we could descend first and had the same perfect conditions like monday. We descended again along the superstructure to the upper deck. Starting there, we dove along the pipelines, turned around and let the vast dimensions impress us. After that we went to starboard and took a look over the curb, down the vessel´s side. The look down showed again the vast dimensions of the wreck. The bottom at around 80m could not been seen and upwards in the back light we could see the whole superstructure. We dove further to the big hole at starboard, which was caused by a explosion during the burning of the ship, and from there underneath the melted parts of the superstructure to the workshop passageway. This time we went through the whole passageway to the portside and on direction stern to the funnel. After the ascent along the superstructure we went for the first decostop to the funnel. Again we let the dimensions impress us during the whole ascent. After a divetime of about 70 minutes we got out of the water.
Then we had to load our equipment in our cars, took our lunch and went to the highway direction Innsbruck. Already on the way home we did the planning for our next dives at the Haven! You will read the report here.