Plunge into Plymouth
My impression of UK diving has done a 360 degree about turn thanks to the last 2 trips; Farnes and Plymouth – The visibility has been incredible which means you can actually see so much more (duh!)…
I always knew there was a reason for wanting to do deeper diving, and this does not mean diving to the depths of despair, but beyond the 20m range of rubble heaps you can end up on, the Iron Ore out of Weymouth (Spring 2004/5) springs to mind as the biggest load of rubbish ever, and a dive which almost made me give up UK diving all together!! But recently, and I am not convinced it is necessarily the depth, I have done some picturesque diving with moody, emotive wrecks, or life covered topographical (more than 2 nuddies per dive guarantee – sea slugs, not nude people!!) dives, with pearl corals and boring sponges.
Thanks to Ian Emery, we did Hand Deeps, not Hands deep, Hand deeps, which is like the hand from the Adams family. You can pick your depth and jolly around in between the fingers until you run out of air or in to deco, there is no getting bored on this dive!
Followed by my first, long awaited, trip to the James Egan lane, which offers fun, and safe, penetration, abundant with life and easy navigation along its length. Even if you didn’t have an expert navigator like I did, Rob, you would have found that you can trace from section to section of wreckage with ease.
Ian’s dive briefings come to mind here. You can congratulate him for exceptionally detailed dive briefings, so much so that he got carried away and added guns and angler fish to the Persier, which were for a different ship! We diligently looked for them… We can’t blame him as he did do the briefing kitted out in Sarah’s dry suit; I think he was just generally confused!
And we finished off with the infamous fairylands. Diving with fish expert Rob can be depressing because I got very excited about a “common” [lesser] spotted goby!! He yawned underwater. I made up for it by spotting an impressive Conger and a John Dory.
The weekend was not incident free so there were plenty of learning opportunities for us all: Lost DSMB (mine), Lost buddy (Mark), and lost weight pockets (Roger)!
Not all the fun was had on board. Gren finding out that his then brand new trolley, about 2 years ago, was not useless, but had successfully lifted Ian, but broke when attempting to lift Dave, was particularly humorous.
For more in-depth details of the fish and corals speak to Rob and of the wrecks to Ian (bearing in mind you may get two for the price of one!)
Thanks once again to the organisers: Ian and Trish, the revellers: Gren, Sarah, Jo, Dave, Mark, Roger, Rob and I, and Mother Nature for beautiful sunshine, flat seas and exceptional viz!