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Adventure Science Team complete Oman Expedition

CommunityJames Hipkiss

Three Adventure Scientists have travelled to the remote Musandam peninsula at the northern tip of Oman in order to study tsunami deposits and undiscovered archaeological sites.

The team was dropped by fishing boat at the northern most tip of the peninsula and took 10 days to hike over 50 kilometres through rugged mountains to return to civilisation in the town of Khasab. The area has rarely been examined in the last 40 years by any scientific team, but the 'Adventure Science' trio's unique makeup allowed them to go into a physically demanding environment where fitness, experience and toughness were essential in order to accomplish what others have deemed impossible. "In research overall, a lack of fitness and back-country skills were preventing a lot of people from getting out and doing some real exploration," says team leader and founder Simon Donato. Donato developed the idea of "adventure science" when he was in grad school, taking fitness and athletic skills from adventure racing and pairing them with scientific interests and expertise.

"I thought, why don't we bring scientists along with these athletes and start launching expeditions where we're testing things that the scientists wouldn't be able to test on their own and they (the scientists) could give the athletes the guidance they need to do the exploration". Donato's decision to explore the southern edge of Iran and Pakistan was because it sits over a 1,000-kilometre fault line that generates a lot of earthquakes and tsunamis. This time they did not uncover the evidence they were searching for, although the discovery of some extraordinary archaeological sites thought to date back at least 500 years made the expedition at least a partial success.