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Tuesday, 27 December 2005

Biggest SKP-team ever is off for a new adventure!

On December 28th our biggest SKP-team ever (19 persons) leave for Soqotra. THis edition 2 English geologist/cavers will join, together with a German linguistic expert in ancient Indian languages. After the high speed train to Frankfurt (GER), we fly with Qatar Airlines for a night in luxurious Doha, to arrive the day afterwards in Sana'a (Yemen) and after a very short night finally at our island!

Thursday, 17 November 2005

SKP8 is fully booked!

The 8th edition of our project is fully booked again. Preparations at high speed are necessary!

Wednesday, 19 October 2005

Preparation SKP8 in sub units!

On October the 20th we had our SKP8 preparation meeting in the pub “Rotonde” in Ghent. There is a lot to be arranged again and this edition we will focus on sub unit training as the team has become too big and therefore to clumsy to function as one unit. In this way our multidisciplinary approach can be fine tuned from the start!

Friday, 23 September 2005

“SKP2000-2004”-report at the National Caving Days

We will present our first publication during the bi-annual National Caving Days (Heure). The limited Dutch edition of our “SKP2000-2004”-report will be sold at a sharp price. More information is only available in Dutch, but no panic because the translation into English is started! On this occasion the final list of SKP8 participants will be made public.

Wednesday, 31 August 2005

14th International Union of Speleology congres in Kalamos, Greece

The main topic of this month was the 14th International Union of Speleology congres in Kalamos, Greece. Although the organization was quite chaotic, it was still worth visiting. Three lectures about Soqotra where given, one relating to exploration and two regarding our scientific research on the island. The first practical issues for the organization of SKP8 are taken.

Tuesday, 12 July 2005

International interest in SKP8 is started again!

Most people are on holiday, so also cavers do it more often underground in this period. Reports are being corrected and finalised. There is already scientific interest from abroad to join SKP8. Next month I'll try to assemble the next team.

Monday, 27 June 2005

SKP7 a dream coming true!

Our 7th SKP-expedition was another dream coming true: 5 new discovered caves, of which 3 continue. 3km of topo and a new potentially longest (already 3km) and certainly deepest cave (approx. -150m) of Soqotra. We are currently working on the report, published on-line soon.
This year my wife and I choose La Palma (Canary Islands) to rest between the dragonsblood trees again!

Monday, 9 May 2005

SKP7 is ready for kick-off!

SKP7 is ready for kick-off. Between May the 11th and 30th, 10 Flemish cavers will continue their work on Soqotra Island. Some work in Hoq cave will be terminated with emphasising the protection of this site. The unknown southwestern karst areas on the island will be explored, some temperature data loggers in the Haghier Mountains must be retrieved and some new interdisciplinary research might start up.

Thursday, 21 April 2005

New URL!

This website has been offline for a while, caused by a change in the name of our provider (from "Planet Internet" into" Scarlet"). Due to this situation our pointer was not active anymore, so we do apologize for this inconvenience. The Dutch version of our SKP2000-2004 report, 150 pages of fresh data, is finished and will be printed in June. The English version is scheduled for August at the UIS meeting in Greece.

Wednesday, 23 March 2005

Invited by Ushuaïa Nature!

The French national filming crew Ushuaïa Nature (TF1), with Nicolas Hulot, is making a documentary about Yemen. They invited me over to talk about the cave research on Soqotra Island (9-19/03), a small item in the complete organization. Beside for the caves, attention will be drawn to the botanical uniqueness of the Island. It was also possible to fly over the island and film the magnificent landscape from above, an amazing opportunity. The documentary is probably scheduled for the first half of 2006.

Saturday, 12 February 2005

SKP2000-2004 Dutch report a fact

The first Dutch draft of our SKP2000-2004 is being finalized, all cave maps are drawn. This version will be revised over the next weeks and is probably ready for publication in April. The translation into English is scheduled for the UIS meeting in Athens during August.

Monday, 31 January 2005

UNIQUE Collectors Item

UNIQUE Collectors Item: Our project and website seems to be a source of inspiration to writers. Last year a Science Adventure, titled: "Pirates, Bats, and Dragons" written by the American Prof. M. Davis and illustrated by William Simpson came out. It's a story about 3 young scientists who organise an expedition to the Soqotran cave systems. We contacted Mike Davis, who kindly told us our project had been an inspiration for him and offered all core SKP members a free copy. Thanks Mike, it's a real adventurous story! For more, information just click on the picture of the book below. If Hollywood should shows any interest, just send an e-mail first.
More reliable Tsunami news in coming in: between 40 and 80 fishing boats are destroyed and one child drowned near Qalansiya. Below some satellite imagery which demonstrates how "lucky" the Soqotri were, not being hit by a high(er) energy wave. Also take a look at the Friends of Soqotra website (see links).