Diary

Club Med on the North Side of Beadnell Point

Well it was.........blue sea that was flat calm and broken on by the splash of bikini clad female university students jumping in from the cliff face to around four meters of water, oh to be twenty again and yes I can remember that far back!

Vis, so what was the vis like? It was damn good, probably in the 10-12m range and all this with zero surge and waves that were inches high, there was very little 'snot' in the water and the vis disappears like a 'council swimming pool' so may improve as the finer particles drop out of the water and onto the kelp tops This is due to continue for the forecastable future so I am sure that all those chaps shore diving here in Gods Country will be very happy bunnies, even allowing for dive courses being conducted in some of the usual haunts!

For sure there was more fish life than on the Islands, although this dive I didn't manage to coax an angler-fish into one of my booty bags for 2lbs of fillets, but there was variety and most of it was 'on the fin', that is to say actively hunting!

I went in at high tide so part of my swim was over the kelp to 'interesting areas', heading the other way, towards me, were two large launce, that's the posh name for the greater sandals that grow to thirty centimetres plus, these were not that big but were probably around the twenty centimetre mark and while one continued zipping through the kelp stalks the other did a nose dive into a clump of red pulse..... seconds later the cause became apparent when a large pollack zoomed through the kelp, saw me and headed off at speed.

As is usual there were large numbers of saithe and small kelp cod which tend to hang around divers as we are clumsy buggers who dislodge loads of smaller edibles that your pack of following fish will descend upon like a pack of marauding wolves. There were many more male ballan wrasse about today and most were in their spawning livery of electric blue edges to their fins. These fish build nests and despite looking carefully I can't say that I have ever seen one, I have seen plenty of wrasses picking up seaweed to build their nests but no luck spotting the nest, I was pretty close on this dive as the wrasse was almost 'facing me down' but I had no luck in actually spotting the nest ball of eggs and weed, maybe one day.

I was heading to an area that I hadn't spent much time picking over although I had spotted a few weights when I had a bimble earlier this week. It is an area where you go over a second big reef and the drop is from 2m to 9m, so quite a drop and it is at the east of this reef. Towards this end of the reef the shale on which the sandstone is sitting had been washed away to such an extent that it has collapsed over the winter of 19/20, into a pile of large chunks. Anyhow this has exposed a large area of bedrock which was sheltered by the reef but hard to get at which was littered with years worth of sinkers, which I spent half an hour picking up........well at £1.10 a kilo it is cash lying there!

In one of the mini-gullies that have been worn in the bedrock was a rather large catshark, she was lying on some lead weights so was going to be shifted but would she hell move from her deep slumber and it was only when I brought out my edible bag and picked her up that she zoomed off, as far as anglers are concerned she would be classed as a 'bull-huss' and would be quite a catch, today for me she was a damn pain!

With conditions being so settled the lobsters were all very active and at one point when I was emptying a 'tosheroon' of a dozen or so weights three fiends all came out from their hidden holes, they must have been thinking that the sea god had deposited a large lump of protein bang in their territory, I am not sure that lobbies can look disappointed, however when I moved from my work you could almost hear the sighs as they retreated into their hidden holes, I think that when the day comes it would be only fair to let the blue fiends have a go at me, I've eaten plenty of them over the years......

It hadn't been very long into the dive when the bag started getting heavy and you all know that if a bag feels heavy underwater then it is going to be horrible carrying it the half mile or so back to the car, so knowing that no-one else is daft enough to dive these sites anymore looking for scrap I simply put a biota air into my suit and headed due south to the main Point. As I started the conditions were flat and there was only a slight tide ebbing so it was easy to move on top of the reef and swim along before I got out, carrying that bag today wouldn't have happened if I had needed to climb out!

There you have it, conditions are as good as they get, so what are you waiting for? Get out there and for goodness sake.....

Dive safe

RichW

Weight this dive - 27.1 kg

Weight this year - 254.2 kg (half way to the annual target!)

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