Diary

Lismore lighthouse in Springs....that's brave!

It's been some pretty big spring tides around Oban so when Shane suggested diving around Lismore Light I thought, 'well I'm up for it' but the others....

Well they were up for it too and to be blunt the current wasn't raging it was a nice little drift along the side of the lighthouse facing away from Oban. 

Of course with clear instructions I was dropped into about 12m of water close to the end of the lighthouse where there was a flattish bottom and told to stay close and not bugger about too much as there was a ferry on the way through........as if! Dropping to the bottom I was initially disappointed as the sand appeared 'too fine' for scallops and sure enough I had to get down to the 20m mark where the sand turned to grit with stones mixed in before I started picking a few up....and then a few more and well lets not dwell on that aspect of the dive!

After ten minutes or so I saw a bottle and picked it up.....and then another and bits of broken china, 'oh' thought I 'maybe a bit of smashed up small boat' but it all came to nothing for sure there was plenty of broken crockery and even a coupe of bits of nondescript rusted tinwork but nothing that you could piece together and go 'ahhhhh', although I am sure that this strectch of rock has seen more than its share of losses over the years. I mean it's got to be obvious that is why a lighthouse was built on it! QED! It appears that this 'stuff' was close to the main slipway which was the landing point for the lighthouse so I am guessing that the sea here was just used as the 'midden' for empty bottles and broken plates.

The main ground was remarkably devoid of life, no real number of dead mans fingers of the exposed rock which has got to be odd considering how much tide this site sees and very little fish life which again considering the flow and the amount of Coalfish plus Pollack that were mooching about on SS Thesis which is maybe two miles as the crow, or should that be Sea Eagle, flies.

In common with most sites around Oban despite the prefect setting for lobsters I saw not one single blue fiend, that is despite looking in every hole and finding it inhabited by either long-clawed squat lobsters or very pugnatious velvet swimming crabs. Many years ago this was a 'good' site for Crawfish and again none about although to be fair I only ventured down to 22m and from the sounder you can see that the slope goes on for an awful long way down......this was one of the Ancient Divers favourite craw sites and I bet that the old bugger fished it out all those years ago, I will have words!

Working along the site in the dying flow it was 'strange' that there was a 'lane' of larger less dense 'stuff' about five meters out from the base of the wall on the 'flatter' section, it comprised of what you may know as marl and some man made fragments of pottery and was home to huge numbers of small king scallops and when I say small I mean from thumb nail size up to just below takeable size, bearing in mind that I tended to find only larger scallops in the dense heavy ground I wonder if this less dense zone acts as a nursery until the scallops get to a size and move to a more permanent residence?

Now despite a successful trip I didn't see, or can't remember seeing any of the predatory starfish so perhaps this isn't as rich a seam as it could be?

lismore

The other guys had been dropped at various points along the reef and one chap who went in close to where I went in but had been shallower found some bits and pieces including a ceramic top to a pan yan pickle jar which I am guessing would be closer to 1903 when the pickle was first sold to 2000 when it was withdrawn, certainly I can remember that my grandma liked this particular condiment and it was screwtop in the 70's.

At the other end of the site the guys on the wall reported an octopus that had zipped into it's lair and then scowled out at them, apparently the topography was similar with nowhere near the amount of life that you would expect or indeed that is present over the other side at Morvern Cliffs.

Well that's it folks a successful weekend and an indication that I can dive and survive on my current meds although I will need to be aware and go deeper slowly to see exactly how they impact regards narcosis.

Dive safe

RichW

 

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