With Lois (the organiser) having work commitments, everything fell on Irfon’s shoulders and this was probably the sole reason, that under the immense strain of trying to do everything, he organised a day out on the south coast. Anyway, a plan was hatched, launch at Castellmarch and head round the corner towards Hell’s Mouth. With the sun beating down, Irfon, Dewi, David J, David H, Robin and The Duke headed out of the Warren, we were able to see the bottom all the way towards Cilan- it really was gin clear.
The morning dive was to be a fast drift across Hell’s mouth, but it turned out to be almost slack. It was therefore very considerate of Dave H to point out to Dave J that he was ‘sans fins’ as he was about to disembark. All pairings reported a descent dive on bouldery, cobbly beds which were split by large sandy crests. A massive selection of life was seen, including juvenile dogfish and a very playful prawn which prolonged Irfon and Dewi’s dive over the strict limit of 45 minutes that was imposed by the dive Marshall (i.e. Irfon). It was then back to the Warren to dispose of Robin and Mike, change cylinders and head back towards Porth Cilan to rendezvous with slack high water.
The Daves were first in, this time using BARF (Buoyancy, Air, Releases .. yes you get the drift.) and had such a good time that they went a full five minutes over the agreed dive time of 45 minutes. With the lifeboat and coastguards stood down, Irfon and Dewi went in and did almost a carbon copy of the first pairings dive; the only difference being that the Daves didn’t get to see the school of dolphins that went past when they were performing shore cover!
The weather had been very kind to us and so had the Jones brothers from Castellmarch so a very big thank you to Wyn and Hywel for their much appreciated assistance in launching and recovering.
You’re probably starting to see a patter developing here, It’s a Wednesday evening, limited numbers to take the boat out and a late high tide….hmmmmm, where can we dive other than Vivian???
Just for a change it was Wyn and Robin who made the foursome up with Peter and Irfon and just for another change we dived the shore side of the bay. It’s almost a carbon copy of the reef on the outer edge but with the rock on your port side and the sand to starboard on the way out. Again good viz of about 6m and plenty to see including very docile dogfish and hunting shoals of Pollack. Both pairings of Peter and Wyn (guess where Peter spent most of his time!) and Robin and Irfon logged dives in excess of an hour.
Just for a change, off gassing and rehydration was completed amongst the farmers celebrating filling their silage pits at the Lion.
Sparrowhawk will be out of action for the short term at least after its captain ran it aground in Sand Street, Pwllheli. The tow bar hitch separated from the remainder of the tow bar which, when Mike smartly applied his brakes, got him up his wheel arch. Ooo painfuuuul …….and expensive.
Sparrowhawk is unlikely to be back on its trailer in time for the Anglesey trip. However Mike will still be the manager for the weekend of 4th & 5th July so if you are still wanting to go make sure you let him know by Wednesday 24th June. Places will be limited, now!
Two boats and eight divers met up at a sunny Porth Colmon. We eventually launched through the very smelly sludge and seaweed. Peter, David J, David H, Wyn, Lee and myself on the club rib and Irfon, John and Micky with second cylinders for everyone on Sparrowhawk. First in were David J and myself for a lovely dive off the north end below the light house, decent vis and plenty of pollocks, crabs and a few lobsters. Second were John and Mickey some 1/4 mile out saying the vis out there was fantastic, which caused everyone else to give it a try. On then for a relaxing lunch on the island.
Second dive was planned off Maen Bugail but after a quick recce, it was decided that it would be a rather extreme drift dive and we moved closer to the south side. David J and myself came across a large crab that was in the process of being consumed by a huge lobster. Wyn thought Jaws had arrived when David J grabbed his unsuspecting leg, Wyn and Irfon logging a 40m. Everyone then followed Peter, Lee and David H’s quickly deployed SMB, low depth concentric circles in the north bay. Headed for home with wide grins after a good day’s diving.
Irfon was organizing again and with the south coast having been exposed and choppy for several days he elected to return to the scene of last week’s candidate for best dive of the month. In actual fact the only dive of the month thus far, but nevertheless it had been brilliant, if you can believe the Report!! The difference was that we were diving at the middle of the flood tide, so a bit more of a walk to get in. There was also the amazing spectacle of a trailer type tent which was fitted on top of a landrover assembled at the far end of the parking area. It was also a bit choppy out of the bay with a strongish wind from the NW. Otherwise much the same, only 3 divers, with Peter and David J. replacing Anja & Dewi.
The dive itself was pretty much a carbon copy of last week, if you can believe the Report, with the Pollack in numbers in chest deep water, and throughout the bay. They were hunting for sand eels and so we were rewarded with the spectacle of them darting around. Viz. was 8-10 metres with large numbers of wrasse, dogfish and smaller fry about. As you might have guessed Peter chose the reef side of the group and spent the dive immersed in the kelp, his position given away only by a stream of bubbles. But with viz. that good he could be left to indulge his little idiosyncrasy. We continued down the west side of the bay to the very end of the reef where Irfon glanced a seal and the strong current in our faces put paid to any idea of venturing outside the shelter of the bay. Retracing our fin strokes brought us back in after just over an hour, with me saying that I hadn’t seen such good conditions in the bay for years, and Irfon saying that he hadn’t seen such good conditions since last week, i.e. if you can believe the Report!!!
We then adjourned to the Lion where we forgot that Irfon was working the next day and stumbled out at 11.30pm. As Irfon mentioned last week, the only detraction from the evening was that so many missed out on such an excellent dive.
The original plan was to dive Trefor pier, but with the wind refusing to swing to it’s forecasted direction, it meant that a change of venue was needed as the swell underneath the pier would be uncomfortable to say the least. A reccy at four o clock by Irfon confirmed that Porth Ysgaden was sheltered from the wind and was indeed diveable. Upon her arrival at Porth Ysgaden, Anja was greeted by a text message on her phone, welcoming her to Ireland!
For once diving in a threesome wouldn’t be a chore as the viz in the bay looked to be good, so without delay, Anja, Dewi and Irfon made their way seawards. The viz turned out not to be good, in fact it turned out to be blooming fantastic at 10m+, very rare indeed for a shore dive. The fish life in the bay was on it’s own worth seeing with shoals of Pollack coming and going, and dozens of wrasses mingling with them. The trio made it to the end of the reef, Anja wanted to carry on and head for Ireland, but Dewi persuaded her that turning back was a better option. Dives of over an hour were logged, and it would be very rude not to with plenty to see near and far.
The only real down point of the evening was the poor turnout and hence probably no one will believe us that the viz was really that good!