On Sunday Seaking, our 6m RIB (Rigid Inflatable Boat), set out with Cox – Dave T, Senior Boat Hands – Gren, Tom, Leanne and new newbie to RIB diving me – Nathan.
The weather wasn’t particularly great…wasn’t raining…at least, but the waves and direction of wind meant that our first destination, The City of Waterford, a wreck at 35m was not possible. We had hoped to meet up with other club members who were diving the City of Waterford onboard Proteus, the MET Police BSAC Diving Club catamaran – for Tea and Chocolate Hob Knobs…as well as use of the onboard toilet facilities!
We thought very briefly trying for the Fortuna SS, but decided on the Lancer II as in the past it always came up with some interesting diving at 22m.
The Lancer II was a trawler that was hit by HMS Yacht Vagrant in 1918. HMS Vagrant did attempt to tow the Lancer II back to port, but soon after she sank with no loss of life.
The dive was excellent, had a little problem clearing ears at beginning, but was down at 23m with 4m vis and a total dive time of 38minutes. Some amazingly big lobsters, crabs and fish as well as places to explore on the wreck.
So being that this was my first trip RIB diving I was bound to come a cropper somehow. Wth RIB diving – a clean and tidy deck is paramount, store all your kit in your day bags before and after diving (I could have done better…I think…people where kindly suggesting where to put stuff…at least not to put it where the sun don’t shine, so to speak). It’s also important that everyone knows what is going on and helps getting divers ready to go in and out of the water.
Captain Dave Sparrow – at least people can’t spell your surname wrong if you change it to “Sparrow” Dave… 😉
Well, I might not always have understood exactly what was going on or being said, although I thought I heard a few “Ah ha me shipmates”, “shiver me timbers”, and “nice looty”, although that could have been “Nice Booty” in reference to Gren’s “rear entry” (get it) boarding.
Captain seemed to know where his magical little compass, called GPS, was taking us so all I had to do was sit back and try not to vomit.
At this point I must congratulate myself (no one else will) – I did well on the old V front – at least I was kind of talking to people and partaking. Learnt from Portland trip not to have a hearty breakfast unless wanting to feed fish. I might have had a few spew…rious moments after waiting 50 minutes for some twin tanks to decompress. How you get 9minutes deco at 20m I don’t know, but hey ho! I felt a lot better and ready for our next dive…the Sands on the Starboard side as leaving the harbour.
Well they definitely were white sands, and reminded me very much of Mr Strange Sketch by Punt and Dennis – “Milky Milky”.
Dave T and I jumped in for what we found out, quickly, was going to be a very short low vis drift dive. I could make out the occasional shell fish or a small spooked Gobie and in the not too far distance the audible moans of despair and frustration from an experience diver holding long enough to allow me to log this as a dive in my log book before signalling up.
On the surface I did what I guess is the most rookie thing you can do on your first RIB dive – I dropped my weight belt as I went to take it off and hand it into the boat….which on a normal year would have instantly resulted in being awarded the coveted wooden spoon prize at our Annual Dinner Dance, however this year I am pretty confident that the incumbent prize winner will remain with it another year for his corker (dubious bribery not allowed) 😉
At the end of the day I thoroughly enjoyed the diving and company, who were very patient with me… and all for £7 each in fuel for the boat – a very cheap and enjoyable way to dive!
Just wish it was as calm as last weekend dive on the T R Thompson – check out Dave’s great video from that weekend here!
There are always trips going on, if you want to get out diving more and make some great friends and experience new things then why not get in touch either on our Facebook page or through this website on our contact page or why not come down the club on Thursday nights from 8pm.
Be good to “Welcome you aboard – Ah haaarrrr” (ok so I have to work on my Jack Sparrow speech…but I think I can carry off the mascara bit well…)