The North Side of Beadnell Point, the gift that keeps giving!

It’s the gift that just keeps on giving, that is the North Side of Beadnell Point, a small area with the remains of several wrecked vessels, certainly MV Yewglen, probably parts from ST Mistley, well the boiler anyhow and of course a few wooden vessels which have only left rudder pintles dotted about, oh and of course the odd ‘trinket’

But the conditions? Well worsening, the vis was probably 5m and it was getting quite wishy-washy with swell from the south.

The session had been planned as a dive on the South Side, starting at Little Rock and ending at (about) the concrete gully, but with Dennis Wise swell starting to bash onto the rocks it was prudent to leap into the more sheltered North Side.

I was diving from the top of the tide so it was a bit of a bimble out to the interesting zone, well the first interesting zone, which is a large area where the plates of the Yewglen have been pulled from the sea-bed leaving a bit of a ‘grub spot’, lots of iron, odd bits of lead and brass with the chance of something ‘nice’, although this year I have only found one curio that is sitting with my little pieces of dive treasure.

Today was interesting as a piece of large diameter, thick wall copper pipe that I have given a bash to over the years with no movement finally came loose with next to no effort. Every year some of the iron/rust concretation which holds a large number of bits and bats is washed away and obviously a critical amount had been removed from the pipe holding crud., so a bit of a result. Another result was a huge piece of lead scupper pipe that I have never seen before that looks like it will lift with very little effort, it just means bring the wheelbarrow along the Point and conduct the final lift at high tide. It’s the voice of experience here, last year I lifted a rotted steel conduit which was maybe eight inches diameter, it was the fifty kilo of lead coated wire that was the real target and an absolute bugger to get along to a position where I could haul it into a barrow!

Enough about Beadnell shore divings answer to Cox of Scapa, the animal life is picking up seemingly daily, more large Pollack turning up and this dive I noticed a large number of unidentifiable fry, well that’s not strictly true, they were from a species of round-fish, so probably cod based on the amount of fingerling cod that are knocking about later in the year! There were a couple of chaps float fishing crab when I was diving targeting Bass, that is a species that I have never seen ‘in water’ but sure anglers catch odd ones in this location. Knowing a little bit about this species, I think that they are probably higher in the water column and close to the area where the tide rips over the point, not an area that I oft dive.

I spotted another male lump-sucker keeping its eggs well aerated, it was a very good colour, lots of red and orange so maybe I will take my camera on the next dive as it will make for some good photographs. If you are interested go to the boiler, swim past the end and turn inshore in the gap ‘tween boiler and Point wall and swim towards the land you will see it under a concreted iron girder, please don’t spook it away from the nest!

There are more and more small, up to fist size edible crabs appearing inshore but none of their larger, takeable brethren, years ago you could find the odd crab further along at the carrs between Beadnell and Seahouses but its been many a moon since I saw anything whilst shore diving at Northumberland that was worth taking, in 20m+ there are plenty but they don’t seem to like shallow water which is odd as I have ‘scragged’ some monsters in less than six meters from the shore at Babbacombe, strange.

Today I covered some of the more des-res of the lobster holes and it was quite odd that none have residents as usually there are some monsters in residence, I am hoping that the bigger fiends are just ‘late’ as there are plenty of their smaller brethren and wiggies dotted around the site, but big ‘uns were missing. Further down the coast the authorities are dredging the River Tees and there have been lots of crustacean fatalities, earlier in the year I thought people were conflating dredging and deaths as the winter storms really battered the shale sea-bed and will have ripped many hidey holes open but now I am not so sure as there are still fresh ‘dead-uns’ being washed up, I have added a link from the local paper that could be of interest.

Concern over 'devastating' death of crustaceans in North East | The Northern Echo

With the weather worsening it was noticeable ‘post-dive’ that there were no larger nudibranchs out and about, so the usual sea-hare, sea-lemons etc were missing, probably squeezed into a kelp root-ball of cracks and crevices on the bed-rock, it never fails to amaze me how quickly creatures of the shallow seas ‘know’ that a spell of bad weather is coming and take appropriate action, be that smaller animals, like nudibranchs simply disappearing into holes or lobsters sulking in their lairs should there be silt in the water. I am not saying use these signals as a sure fire forecast but its interesting and backs up the ‘Bill Frogett’ style of weather forecasting where he looked at animal life to assist in his forecast. I shall not discuss the Piers Corbyn forecasting at this or any point!

The dodgy conditions are due to blow over by end of Tuesday and flattening off to ‘nowt’ at the weekend so it looks like you could make plans for the weekend, just stay safe and stay sensible with your parking if diving at Beadnell!

Dive safe


Weight this dive – 11.2 kg

Weight this year – 286.7 kg

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