Diary

The day after....with a camera!

Following on from some super vis it was time to go in armed with a camera!

As always some nuts and bolts to start with.................

The vis wasn't quite as good aas yesterday but still 9m plus, basically I could see the top of the reef whilst lying on the bottom in 9m

The temperature was warm, although some guys who were snorkelling thought that it could have been warmer!

Thinking back the big issue with this dive was that I was using a 12l tank rather than the usual 10l unit and the extra weight plus more importantly extra tank length pushes on my back just where they added the titanium in 2009 so owwwww!

I decided that with these small neap tides to dive at high water, mainly to ease getting out, although with such flat conditions I actually swam on-top of the Point and then walked out along the flat barnacle covered rock, something that you can't do all that often as it is swept by tide and battered by waves.

Bimbling about today I did notice that the fish situation was quite strange, insofar as the large pollack which mooch about on the site were all over and very close in rather than their usual haunt 'beyond' the boiler in deeper water. All of them were 'low' in the water and not in their usual hunting position high in the water column but this, I guess, is down to the fact that fish have no eye-lids and with such bright sunlight they have to keep deep or risk being dazzled, which is dangerous even for larger fish as there is always something 'bigger' in the sea that will eat you all up. 

So armed with my camera I went around randomly snapping bits of wreck and also some shots showing more of an 'overiew' to give people who don't dive the site a bit of an idea why I liken the area to Steptoes Yard. Taking photos late in the season on this shallow wreck does mean that most of the rust has a luxuriant coating of purple dulse, but there are always patches where the weight of the weed has caused the steel to delaminate, giving rise to patches of rust which are soon covered in weed again, However this delamination is one of the factors meaning that the wreck is rapidly degrading.

Over time I have kinda worked out where various parts of the wreck actually 'were' on the ship and today was another light-bulb moment, the last lot of storms have sifted some plates and you can now make out some of the keel of the ship, the 'bending' part that leads up to the bows. It is sitting up against one of the pinnacles, the one with the monster lobbie hole, and is maybe six inches thick and yes the weed has just dropped off, so not only was it easily spotted but it is also bright orange with a 'mushy' surface.

Looking for nice shots it was noticeable that there wer loads and I mean loads of small edible crabs, all about fifty millimeters over the shell. Talking with one of the anglers he had caught half a dozen codling weighing up to about three or four pounds the night before so I am guessing that these 'rock cod' are all in shalo water glutting on the small crabs and also any 'wiggy' lobsters that they happen across!

Beadnell - NoP (26/08/19)

The strings of pots were still lying over the site and yes they were full of lobsters as per a couple of the snaps, they also had a few fishing lures stuck in the main rope, these expensive lures were gratefully removed and given to one of the anglers on the Point, I do always let the guys know when there are pots close to the area that they are fishing but people don't always take notice and some days I have passed strings of pots which have been festoon with lures, hooks and various mackeral traces, I guess it makes life difficult for the potting fishermen and knowing how awkward life can be using a permanent shot-line which anglers loose gear on I shudder at how these guys can handle the heavy, moving line in a moving boat.

With such delightful conditions and hoping that the tide hadn't really turned I went just beyond the boiler and tried to move up and over the reef, then move along by 'Little Rock' to get out somewhere on the South Side to minimise my walk. The problem was that the tide had turned and even though the 'bootlace' seweed wasn't bent over there was a strong tide running top to bottom on the Point, I thought that heading along the South Side of the Point would take me out of the current but no such luck. It wasn't raging and I could move but the thought of fighting past Little Rock before reaching easier swimming conditions made my mind up, so it was shallow water stand up and out! 

The conditions look great and I really fancy making a weekend of it at the start of September and have a real go at the anglers weights at Dunstanburgh Castle, oh and I was also given a good steer on where the snaggy area of Cullernose Point is located so that is another target! 

Dive safe

RichW

Weight this dive - 1.3 kg

Weight this year - 334.6 kg

 

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