SEATTLE -- Zegrahm DeepSea Voyages here next year will offer two
deep-sea expeditions aboard minisubmarines to explore the world's
northernmost shipwreck, the 500-ton Breadalbane, and to search for
the elusive sixgill shark.
According to Zegrahm, the trips will mark the first time that
nonscientists will travel in the high-tech submarines, known as
submersibles. Zegrahm said the submersibles, which are in
scientific operation today, can accommodate two passengers and a
pilot in a comfortable, one-atmosphere environment with a large
window for viewing and picture-taking. The submarines can dive to a
depth of 1,000 feet.
One expedition will explore the wreck of the Breadalbane, a
British sailing ship that sank in 1853 off Beechey Island in the
Canadian Arctic while searching for the explorer Sir John Franklin.
Zegrahm said the Breadalbane sits upright and is remarkably well
preserved 350 feet below Arctic ice in waters teeming with rarely
seen marine life.
A specially equipped plane will fly passengers from Resolute,
Canada, to Ice Station Beechey, where trailers specifically
designed for Arctic living will serve as home base for the
eight-day program. Near the base, large holes will be cut in the
ice, and large cranes will lower the submersibles into the
Clients will embark on as many as four dives during the
expedition, weather permitting. Between dives, marine biologists
and historians will give lectures, and clients will be able to
venture out on snowmobiles to view polar bears and other
The cost of the trip is $9,980 per person, double occupancy,
with 12 departures scheduled from March to May. The April 13
departure includes an optional four-day extension to visit the
North Pole for $8,980 per person.
The second offering is a list of 28 five- and six-day trips
called In Search of the Sixgill Sharks, scheduled from June 30 to
Sept. 10. These expeditions depart from Hornby Island, situated off
central Vancouver Island, British Columbia, where the waters of the
Strait of Georgia are home to the giant shark.
Most shark species have evolved over time and have five gill
slits. However, with six gill slits, these giant sharks (up to 25
feet long) are virtually unchanged from millions of years ago.
From the base on Hornby Island, clients take a boat ride to the
"mission control" barge housing the subs. The five-day trips
emphasize submersible diving, while the six-day trips combine
submersible diving with scuba diving.
The five-day trip costs $3,890 per person, double; the six-day
trip costs $4,980.
Both the Breadalbane and the shark expeditions include three
meals a day. Air fare is not included in the price.
Zegrahm DeepSea Voyages, Phone: (888) 772-2366 or (206)
285-3743, Fax: (206) 285-7390, Web: www.deepseavoyages.com, E-mail: