The season starts here....... !

And before anyone comments, to misquote an infamous comedic medieval line 'I give ni fig ni fart what BSAC say'!

That is because basically I will look at government guidelines and decide on the risks and implications like any adult should!

So where was the first 'good' saltwater dive of the year? It was in Lady Hole in January, ok so the first real 'summer dive'? Well it was on the South Side of Beadnell Point and it was super!

Usually as a guy who is in a few times a week, every week you gradually see the wildlife return in dribs and drabs but today in the good vis which was around the 6m mark quite a few of the summer animals are back and in residence, which is a good thing to see, obviously they were there last week when I was in on a site at the other side of the point but the crap vis meant that they simply couldn't be seen.

Firstly lets talk topography, the site now has a thin coating of sand on the bedrock which was 'bare' last year, I don't think that this will have any marked impact on the animal life, it will only make spotting the scrap, lost fishing weights a tad harder. Also we have had another major shift around the wreckage site of the Mistley and where last season and actually for a long, long time there was a section of boulders between the wreck and the slope towards the westerly end of the wreckage these have now been shifted away, I think one has been pushed up the slope but I am not sure where the others have gone. There is also a lot more wreck exposed and I intend chopping out the exposed lead scupper pipes in due course, there were also a few bits of copper sticking out from the ironwork which may come out with a little work over the summer, with the changes here I cannot wait to have a look see at the Yewglen to see if anything is showing there or indeed if there are some nice trinkets from earlier wrecks. Oh yes there were large swathes of kelp that looked very be-draggled and had obviously taken a battering in the winter storms.

Due to time constraints I only had a very quick thirty minute dip but it was great, firstly the slope is swathed with those big nudibranch that love the gentle slope and weed, the sea-hare, honestly if you want a shot of one of these critters this is the site as they are on the slope from 2m depth down to about 6m depth so there is no need for any special lighting arrangements as the natural light is obviously great. On reaching the bottom of the slope I noticed lots of saithe about and when I briefly retraced my steps there were loads of them looking for any 'tastes' that may have been disturbed by my passing, however my ninja like movement means very little disturbance, that said if there are numpties diving the Somali I can 'shit-kick' with the best of them to screw up the vis!

Although still flighty there were three ballan wrasse that I spotted mooching about and hopefully although there are more and more people out fishing these bonny fish will be left alone! Now onto something that is eaten when small by the wrasse, yup fiends, there were lots of lobsters about with two or three a reasonable size but as it was a short dive I was really just looking at the lie of the land, so to speak. There was the usual string of pots laid maybe ten yards beyond the slope on the rough ground, I had a mocha and looked at two pots which both contained a few small lobsters but nothing out of the ordinary, there were quite a few squid eggs on one of the pots and they are around for most of the year, last year whilst trying for a mackerel I caught one which the Ancient Diver assured me made the best calamari he has ever tasted!

Having had a bible maybe a hundred yards along the rough ground, covered the wreckage and headed mid-way up the slope I decided to head back just on the 'outside' of the kelp, I was conscious of time constraints and interested if the anglers were loosing weights......well yes they were with the few weights that I found picked up in short order over the ground I estimate just to the west of the concrete gully that runs the old drain into the sea.

So in summary a really nice dive and a few more weights to add to the pot which will be melted down and made into a new shot for Calypso when I get that far!

Dive safe


Weight this dive - 2.3 kg

Weight this year - 40.5 kg

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