Launched at 9am from Pwllheli harbour with 5 divers on board- Dewi, David, Jake, Brett and Laura. Headed straight towards Porth Ceiriad for a morning dive off Cilan Head. Buddy pairs were Laura and David, Brett and Jake. Dewi didn’t fancy getting cold so early in the day so didn’t dive. David and Laura had a lovely 45 minute dive winding through the gullies and around boulders with lots to see – dahlia anemones, lobsters, spiders, edible crab, wrasse, spiny starfish (with varying number of limbs!), bloody henry starfish, star ascidian and some large pollack. Jake and Brett had a 50 minute dive following a different path and travelling quite a bit further in the company of an inquisitive bass following them around. Headed to Porth Ceiriad for lunch. Aware of the incoming tide David opted for a solitary picnic on the boat whilst the rest of us headed to the beach.
After lunch we headed to half tide rock in the hope of a seeing the seals. Sure enough the seals were on the rock when we arrived and hung around to watch the ‘kitting up show’ but were conspicous in their absence during our dives- typical! First in were the threesome of Dewi, David and Laura. Having nominated David as the leader and agreed a plan of “follow David”, two seconds after descending Laura watched helplessly as David and Dewi headed in different directions! David and Laura headed in a S/SW direction and ended up in a pleasant drift with a highlight of seeing a John Dory over the sandy ridges. Dewi had headed north and had a bimble around the rocks and a slate wreckage. He found the Timbo boiler although there was less life around it than he’s seen previously. Brett and Jake went in as a second wave and followed a similar path to Dewi before cramps and the cold brought their dive to an end at the 48 minute mark. The vis was definitely poorer on the second dive, around 5m max compared to the 8m-ish of the morning.
Jake drew the short straw and under instructions from Mike had a third dive on return to the harbour to unblock a pipe on a boat in the harbour. All in all a nice sunny day out on the boat although it was still rather chilly considering it’s June!
The pairings were Kieran,Laura and David, as there were some exercises to be completed.
Then Andrew,Melony and myself. The vis was fairly good. I had tied a bag of dead crab to the pole after fishing and there were many small corkwings around the area. The fish were pretty much everywhere on the way out so there was something to see pretty much the whole dive,from Spiders to dogfish.
As we reached the kelp I started scouring the sea bed for treasure, when I noticed Andrew engrossed in his filming. As I looked up I could see some Pollock in the background, but a little further out I glimpsed some flashes of silver,these gradually drew closer, so I let myself sink into the kelp. On looking round Melony and Andrew had done the same. By now these flashes of silver had turned into a school of bass. I think its safe to say we were all mesmerised. We were all holding our breath as not to disturb the bass, but even when carbon dioxide got the better of us we exhaled and settled again the bass came back time and time again. Well we all dive for different reasons, but to have the privilege to lie down and watch such an event unfold is ore inspiring. And what’s more I can sit and watch the video Andrew did to remind me of the event. This dive will take some beating. Our dive times were 59 minutes and Kieran,Laura and David were 64 minutes. I believe the exercise was carried out but there were a few issues to be revisited.
Then we returned to our house for Scones and cream.