Thursday, April 23, 2015

Scuba Diver Salvages Lost Treasure - Dubai Blog

Forwarding this to highlight all the things that are wrong about this story.

I thought we had a saying in the diving community: Take nothing but pictures, leave nothing but bubbles.

Anything you take with you on a dive needs to be secured to you with a lanyard or retractor.  It's too easy to accidentally, or intentionally, let go of something on a dive.  If it isn't clipped to you, you WILL looses it.

When something is in the water for a period of time, marine life will move in.  An old coke can may be junk when it gets dropped off the side of a boat, but after a short period of time, marine life will move in to investigate.  It may become a home for a snail, crap, octopus.  You cannot remove things from the ocean that have become part of that environment.  By the looks of the camera, it has been down there a while, and I'm pretty sure something was living on it judging by the condition of the outside of the housing.

The worst part of this story is the fact that it took the guy several minutes to extracate the camera from the rocks and CORAL.  I find it hard to imagine that this could have been done withouth causing damage to the environment.  Coral is a very slow growing, fragile ANIMAL.  Divers climbing over it, yanking at it, breaking it off, just to get to a lost camera is not worth it!

Two lessons to learn from this then:
- Don't loose your stuff when you go diving
- Don't bring things out of the water if they look like they've been claimed by the ocean.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Diving McAbee Beach - Night Dive - Feb 25, 2015

McAbee Beach Night Dive

Site Description

McAbee beach is a dive site on Monterey's Cannery Row. The dive site is accessed from the small beach between the El Torito restaurant and the Spindrift hotel.

Google map showing the dive site

Click for Fullsize map or Google Map

Street parking is available, metered. There is also a lot across the street, which charges by the day. The El Torito restaurant also has a parking lot, however, El Torito do not appear to be welcoming of divers in there lot at the moment (parking tickets have been issued recently!).

Enter the water around the center of the beach, the is where the water is the calmest. Be aware of the drop-off, the beach has a shelf. A small problem on entry, and on exit - for short divers it can make the exit on this beach tricky. Swim away from the beach quickly, and bear towards the El Torito side of the beach.

Plan to dive closer to the El Torito side of this beach (South East), this is the calmer water. If you dive towards the North, the water is shallow, and the surge and waves can become dangerous.

On this dive, we dropped down just outside the rock-wall surrounding the El Torito restaurant. We dove the plan shown below.

Map showing dive site and path of dive
View Fullsize Map

What to see on the dive

At first we swam parallel to the shore and the water remained pretty shallow (20ft). You will see plenty of old cannery pipes and plenty of rocks. We saw rock fish, decorator crabs. Also, in under the rocks I saw a good size octopus. I was hoping the pipes would have some eels, but wasn't lucky enough to see any.

As we swam out from the beach (30degree heading) we got more kelp. The depth dropped to around 30ft for a while. There were still plenty of rocks, although the bottom did opened up a little and there were several sandy patches.

Swimming back in, it got more rocky, gradually shallower, and a little surgy as we got in above 20ft.


Here's a Critter Montage video. If you look carefully, around 45seconds in, you can see the octopus hiding in the rocks.

Watch on YouTube

Dive Log

Depth 34ft
Duration 56min
Temperature 56F
Visibility 15ft

Click for full-size

Friday, January 9, 2015

Metridium Fields and Breakwater Dive Oct 25 2014

Dive to the metridium fields this weekend with a couple of dive buddies from the Dive Club of Silicon Valley.

We dove to at the metridium fields, as one of my buddies had not had the opportunity (or good fortune) to find the metridiums when he'd tried it in the past.

Recently I've taken the approach of descending nearer to shore and following "the pipe" out to the metridiums (see earlier maps). However today we swam out further, to save air, and dropped right down on the metridiums.

The advantage of avoiding the swim out underwater is that you then have enough air to make the long swim parallel to shore, to exit at the breakwater. This makes for a different dive from usual. Infact, this is the first time I've done this and it's a nice way to end a metridium dive.

I was expecting the bottom to be entirely sandy and barren, with the occasional halibut for company. But as the video shows, there are several rocky oasis on the journey, with plenty of marine life to enjoy.