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Finathon Crossing the Verde Island Passage, Philippines

Jul. 23/13

Congratulations Rick for swimming 7.8km across the Verde Island Passage, Philippines in 3 hours and raising over $4,000. Your dedication to the cause is unmatched. Read on to find out more about Rick's Challenge and training schedule.

Here in Puerto Galera we've lost our whitetip sharks from over-fishing but have gained thresher sharks, who visit every winter. We want to see the thresher population grow and the whitetip reef sharks come back.

Thanks to everyone who has so far sponsored us to help bring a stop to finning. We set a goal of raising US$1000, but blasted past that in a couple of hours and have raised US$3425. Frontier Scuba is on track to raise US$4,000 for the Project AWARE Shark Conservation campaign! Thank you.

Here in Puerto Galera we lost our whitetip sharks from over-fishing but have gained thresher sharks, who visit every winter. Stunningly beautiful and an encounter that you'll never forget. But, thresher sharks are not protected. We want to see the thresher population grow and the whitetip reef sharks come back. Along with fundraising for Project AWARE we're  petitioning the Mayor of Puerto Galera to protect all shark species here in Puerto Galera. It's really easy to donate and you get a receipt emailed straight to you.

Training is going well, I'm swimming four times a week, with a once-a-week 4.5km swim. I need to get fit as the swim itself will be from Verde to Puerto Galera. That's a straight line swim of 7.2k, but once currents are factored in then it could be as far as 9km. The big swim will be on July 30 2013. If you are in the area come down and join us for some free beer.

Thanks to Philipp Baumgartner for sponsoring me for $100 if I shaved my hair off. Promise kept and here is the new, sleek look. Swimming in Puerto Galera is proving to be a great experience. Warm waters and endless things to look at. One of my favorite routes is from The Hole in the Wall back to the dive shop. On west Escarceo we have great acropora species of coral (table and staghorn corals), Ernies Pt serves up sea snakes and the sea grass area of Sabangis good for at least two or three green turtles in the morning. Lovely!

Thanks for your help! Cheers - Rick. www.finathon.org/frontierscuba