26 May 2019 trip report:
Saturday dive 1: Black Hawk (bow)
The weather was sunny and warm and the sea relatively calm. As we descended we could see the water wasn’t fully clear of the plankton as we hoped, but the visibility of about 4-8m was enough to navigate around the wreck (once we got to it after finning against a strong current!). Saw crabs, lots of fish and an eel. I learnt that it might not be the best idea to hold onto Fee’s DSMB and the shot line at the same time – my arms are longer now!
Saturday dive 2: Bombardon unit in the harbour
After lunch and gas fills at Castletown we set off for the Bombardon in the harbour. As we descended it was obvious that the visibility was going to be good. When we reached the wreck the visibility was spectacular. Clearwater and plenty of light from the surface brought almost half of the wreck into view. Needless to say, everyone thoroughly enjoyed this dive. Animal life abounded. Lots of conger eels, crabs and a huge shoal of pollock (the stripey fish) [Webmaster’s note: surely bib, no?]. The shotline had been expertly positioned right next to the wreck and as a result, got stuck. We had to send a brace of Fiona’s back down to free it, and check out our new lifting bag at the same time (it works).
Sunday dive 1: Drift Grove Point Balaclava Bay
(Grove Point Depths between 12–30m. Rocky ledges with large amounts of marine life. Good for drifts and night diving.) Drifting over the mix of sand and rock, the whole floor was a mass of scallops. Edible and spider crabs were seen, a ray and a big fish. The skipper gave specific instructions as she dropped us, going down with already inflated DSMBs and to follow the drift. It was an interesting gentle drift and we saw lots of life between the rocks at depths ranging from 15 to 20m. The visibility was about 4 to 5m this time and everyone enjoyed this dive.
Sunday dive 2: The Dredger
The second dive of the day was at a relatively shallow depth of 12 metres, which is ideal for training as well as to observe sea life.
Overall, a very good two days. Thanks to Fee for planning and, together with Laura, for skippering the brilliant DRIFT dive. Graham and Fiona joined us on Saturday and Melissa & Neil joined on Sunday. Matteo, Sam, George, Laura, Hardeep and Fee all enjoyed a long bank holiday weekend.