the scuba zone - west coast diving 2008
West Coast Diving 2008
This is a log of my dives and pictures from Vancouver Island for 2008.
Nanaimo - Rivtow Lion (November 28 - 14:00)

After lunch and a nice surface interval, we checked the weather and elected to remain on the Rivtow Lion. This time, our plan was to run a reel from the rudder out into the debris field looking for bottles and other artifacts. There were thousands of shrimp skittering about the bottom as we headed off on our adventure. A few nice bottles were retrieved, and I found some vintage chinese pottery. After returning to the boat at the one hour mark, I discovered to my surprise that I had left my weight harness (with 10lbs soft weight) on the boat in my bucket! Although I noticed my buoyancy was tricky underwater, I did not have any real difficulties - just had to keep my wing empty and use my suit for what little buoyancy I required. Looks like I can now drop at least 5 lbs from my overall weighting now!

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Nanaimo - Rivtow Lion (November 28 - 11:00)

The day dawned rainy and a bit windy, so we were unsure of our dive location today. Ken headed out to see what the weather was like on the big wrecks, but we returned to the Rivtow Lion after a quick look into the channel. This proved quite fine as Brent, John and myself geared up and splashed. After gear checks, down to the wreck for an hour long exploration of all the nooks and crannies. I brought the medallion that I had found on the Rivtow Lion last dive, with the intent of returning it somewhere on the wreck. We penetrated the engine room, and at the front of the engine I carefully placed the artifact. A knife was added for effect and off we swam. A few moments later we noticed another dive party (Ian's boat) enter the engine room, followed my much light waving and such. (Later, on the surface we also heard much whooping and hollaring, so figure the divers on Ian's boat thought they had the motherlode!). After exploring the ship for some time, we headed up the line as I was getting rather cold. Overall, and excellent dive. I just hope the divers on the other boat don't try and turn in the medallion in hopes of some big prize or they will surely be disappointed!

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Parksville - Tyee to Dolphin (November 26 - 12:00)

An excellent dive today. Met Brent and John at the Buccaneer, then drove in convoy to Tyee, stopping to look at the Dolphin entrance. Geared up, exchanging gear information and procedures as well as covering the dive plan. Entered the water at mid-tide and rising. Then bubble checks and headed out to the "V", where we descended to the two "sea horses" at about 60 fsw. Then off to the left at 80fsw and over towards Dolphin. Stopped to check in with Grandpa wolf eel. Took some pictures, then on to Dolphin. Swam the wall at Dolphin, then turned and headed back to Tyee. Past the "V" and explored the first wall on the right, then back to the "Sea horses" and up to the shallows. Again, and excellent 75 minute dive.

Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee
Nanaimo - Rivtow Lion (November 13 - 15:24)

Wind still blowing strong, so second dive on the Rivtow Lion as well. Mostly explored the wreck, down to the prop and around. Nice dive.

Rivtow Lion Rivtow Lion
Nanaimo - Rivtow Lion (November 13 - 12:07)

Wind was blowing strong today, so opted for first dive on the Rivtow Lion. Two OC divers plus Dave and I on CC. Dave and I explored the engine room, then the area surrounding the wreck, looking for bottles and such. Found a large octopus off the port side, dead (and being eaten by crabs). Many, many shrimp all around the wreck. A fine dive.

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Nanaimo - HMCS Saskatchewan (November 9 - 14:00)

Excellent dive on the Saskatchewan. Again descended to 20fsw for bubble checks, then down the midships line to the wreck. Swam to the mortar bay in the stern, then down and long burma road as far forward as you can go on this deck. Then out the port side, up to the main deck. Stopped to take some pictures of Glenn and Tiffany, then over to the bridge. In the lower level -starboard side - then up the stairs to the bridge. Had a look around, then out and aft for a short look around by the smokestack. Then up the line and home.

Vis was again excellent - the first picture "up the line" was taken from the ship's mast where the mooring line is attached. You can see the Shawn Tanis quite clearly as well as all the divers on the line.

Dive was not logged on the D3 as it was in my weezle's pocket and did not turn on

Saskatchewan Saskatchewan Saskatchewan Saskatchewan Saskatchewan
Nanaimo - Cape Breton (November 9 - 11:00)

Excelent dive on the Cape Breton. A bit foggy but calm seas. Surface vis was poor, but once below 10 fsw the vis was excellent. You could actually see the ship from 20fsw!

Bubble checks at 20fsw, then down the bow line to the wreck. Entered in the bow hatch, then back to the washroom and aft towards the stern, following starboard burma road (past the steam tables). Stopped just aft of the engine room as another "wreck class" had the stern totally silted out (drills, I expect). Exited starboard, then back up and over to the engine room. Descended throught the skylights and then into burma road on the port side of the engine room. Then back along burma road to the washroom, forward compartment and back up the bow hatch. A totally excellent dive with Glenn & Tiffany.

Pictures taken looking up the bow line to the surface with divers decoing on the line. Also pictures of Aaron and Erin on the line.

Dive was not logged on the D3 as it was in my weezle's pocket and did not turn on

Cape Breton Cape Breton Cape Breton Cape Breton
Nanaimo - HMCS Saskatchewan (October 15 - 14:11)

Excellent dive on the Saskatchewan. Explored the bridge area, then back to the mortar bay and explored Burma road.

Saskatchewan Saskatchewan Saskatchewan Saskatchewan Saskatchewan Saskatchewan Saskatchewan
Nanaimo - Cape Breton (October 15, 11:11)

Excelent dive on the Cape Breton. Spent time exploring the aft section of Burma road.

For some reason, my D3 will show this dive, but won't download it to the PC. Very weird. (Update 11/14/08 - after yesterday's dives, the morning log did download)

Cape Breton Cape Breton
Nanaiom - HMCS Saskatchewan (October 10, 15:31)

Very short dive. Somewhat rough seas entering, swim along boat against current. Sliced left dryglove while swimming to down line. Submerged to 20-25 fsw, checked glove - definitely flooded but proceeded to top of midships. There it was clear glove was VERY flooded and flooding up into suit. Too late to pull the equalization bungee so called the dive. Later found 1/2" slit in back of left glove.

Nanaimo - Cape Breton (October 10, 11:44)

Excellent dive on the Cape Breton with Glenn. Descended to helicopter deck, proceeded forward to engine room. Descended into engine room, saw lights of other divers on starboard corridor so entered on port corridor. Proceeded forward along port side until we reached the forward washroom, then turned around and proceeded aft along starboard side, past the engine room access and into aft section. Past stairways leading upwards and out the stern. Then back over the helicopter deck until Glenn called time. Deco on line.

After dive, "brand new" Cochran went "hiss-POP!!!" at 1/2 hour into surface interval and blew out the battery cap and new lithium battery. Battery was damp and coated with greenish stuff. Rinsed battery compartment and cap - inspection shows all OK. Battery not expanded but definitely exuded some contents. Sending whole unit back.

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Nanaimo - Gabriola Bluffs (September 26 - 14:44)

Good dive on the bluffs. Descended to 100fsw, observed various creatures as we drifted. Took some pictures of the life as well. Nice dive.

Gabriola Bluffs Gabriola Bluffs Gabriola Bluffs Gabriola Bluffs Gabriola Bluffs Gabriola Bluffs Gabriola Bluffs Gabriola Bluffs Gabriola Bluffs Gabriola Bluffs Gabriola Bluffs Gabriola Bluffs Gabriola Bluffs Gabriola Bluffs Gabriola Bluffs
Nanaimo - Cape Breton (September 26 - 11:47)

Awesome dive on the Cape Breton with Bruce & Lynn Partridge & Steve. Splashed & did bubble checks at 20fsw, then down the bow line. Once there, in the hatch and over to the washroom. Dropped down and out the port doorway, then down the port corridor until the engine room. Crossed the engine room and back up the starboard corridor to the forward washroom again. Then back down the starboard corridor, past the engine room until eventually exiting the stern. Back along the side, but some current so up and over the deck. Stopped to look at the bridge, then back to the bow line and up. Excellent dive - I took some pictures and Steve took some video.

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Nanaimo - HMCS Saskatchewan (September 11 - 11:39)

First dive of the day. Inflated suit yesterday and found small leak in the left ankle just under the strap on the front. Sealed leak and re-patched crotch strap area. Splashed and headed down mid-ships line. Looking for lost light (Al's) so off to the bottom near the line... but went starboard instead of port. Back up and over to port, but no light to be found (later found out that the others found the light right away). So up and back to the mortar bay, then video'd the trip up burma road to the forward washroom on the starboard side. Exited and back up the line.

Second dive not logged as the Suunto D3 battery died at 30 minutes, just as I was approaching the line to return. Returned on OMS bottom timer. Second dive much like the first, except no searching. Again along burma road, this time looking for upward hatches. AGAIN flooded suit badly. Guessing it must be the neck seal and all the rubbernecking I've been doing on these dives on the wrecks.

Nanaimo - Rivtow Lion (September 9 - 11:40)

First dive of the day. Wind and waves pretty bad, so group decided to dive the Rivtow Lion. Excellent dive - landed just forward of the wheelhouse, then headed aft along starboard, then in rear engine room overhead opening, along engine starboard to front of engine, then back over the cylinders. then up and out the door. Then swam aft and around the ship, returning to the upline. As I ascended, noted a suit flood. Once on the ladder, it was evident the flood was major. Called the second dive.

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Nanaimo - HMCS Saskatchewan (August 16 - 14:10)

Second dive of the day on the HMCS Saskatchewan. Ken and I descended on the bow line and proceeded midships where we attached a sofnolime jug to the midships line. Ken then inflated the jug to re-float the line. I proceeded to the mortar bay and had a look around, eventually emerging near the bow from the bosun's cabin. Another very good dive.

Nanaimo - Cape Breton (August 16 - 11:40)

First dive today on the Cape Breton. Ken and I descended midships and proceeded to the bow where we retreived the bow line and then affixed a sofnolime jug to the float. Then Ken inflated the jug to re-float the line. Afterward, I proceeded into the forward washroom and beyond, emerging at the engine room. Very nice dive.

Ken working on Cape Breton
Nanaimo - Rivtow Lion (August 4 - 13:30)

Second dive of the day. Due to current, waves and diver discomfort, we elected to dive the Rivtow Lion. As the seas were very calm, I splashed and swam aft to one of the lines and descended midships. Then full circumnavigation of the wreck including a drop down into the engine rooom. Followed the groups of divers about as we explored the ship. A very good dive.

Nanaimo - Cape Breton (August 4 - 11:50)

Another awesome dive on the Cape Breton. Geared up and splashed. Some wind and waves, but not too much surface current. Down to the stack, then back to the engine room. Into the engine room and in the forward starboard doorway. Then right (aft) and along. This is NOT Burma road, but quickly opens out to the aft area and then aft again through a walkway and out the aft. Back to the engine room (along the same corridor) and then aft and down to the entrance to Burma road (starboard). Forward along Burma road, past the galley serving area and continuing on. Swing to port then along and into the forward washroom, then forward, up and out the bow hatch. Return along the deck, then up to the wheelhouse. In from behind, along and out the other side. Finally back to the stack and up. Excellent dive.

Nanaimo - Cape Breton (August 1 - 15:10)

Heavy current on the surface meant a very hard swim (even with the granny line) to the buoy. Descended midships, swam to the engine room windows - something "just not right". Tried my bail-out, but still "just not right". Called the dive. Once back on the boat and gear off, found that I had a headache, so suspected very minor CO2 hit. Once home and gear rinsed and stowed, scrubber showed minor breakthrough, so combined with the great exertion on the surface it would indeed appear that I took a minor CO2 hit. Confirms the right decision was made to call the dive.

Inside Cape Breton
Nanaimo - HMCS Saskatchewan (August 1 - 13:00)

First dive of the day on the HMCS Saskatechwan. Splashed at the stern, then down into the mortar bay. Immediately saw a wolf eel swimming about, so readied the camera and filmed him as he swam into the aft compartment, around and then back out. Eventually he swam up and out of the mortar bay while I carried on to explore Burma road. An excellent dive.

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Nanaimo - HMCS Saskatchewan (July 28 - 14:30)

Another nice dive on the HMCS Saskatchewan, exploring Burma road from the mortar bay to the bosun's cabin and back. Took some video footage of the journey.

Prism on Ken's boat
Nanaimo - Cape Breton (July 28 - 11:40)

Another nice dive on the Cape Breton, exploring Burma road from the bow to the engine room. Took some video footage of the journey.

Inside Cape Breton Inside Cape Breton Inside Cape Breton Inside Cape Breton Inside Cape Breton Inside Cape Breton Inside Cape Breton
Nanaimo - HMCS Saskatchewan (July 19 - 13:50)

As predicted, the sun was out and the seas flat during the surface interval. Moved to the stern of the HMCS Saskatchewan. Geared up and splashed. Down the line and into the mortar bay, then on to Burma road and up to the bosun's cabin. Back the same way, then out the mortar bay. Up and around the side until I was positioned at an opening where Brandon and his dad were returning wth the line. Filmed the pair as they exited. Again, an awesome dive.

Nanaimo - Cape Breton (July 19 - 11:10)

Wreck dive on the Cape Breton. Again a wonderful day, light wind and waves due to settle at noon. Geared up and splached with Brandon and his dad. Down to the wreck, and forward to the bow hatch. Then down and over to the washroom, then down Burma road to the engine room and a bit beyond. Returned to the engine room; in and across, then out the side. Back up to the bow and in the jaggy hole in the deck to the large room. Then up and back to the engine room for a last look around before coming up the line. Awesome dive!

Nanaimo - HMCS Saskatchewan (July 18 - 14:30)

Weather turned to hot and sunny over the surface interval; seas flat. Geared up and descended to the HMCS Saskatchewan on the stern line. Into the mortar bay where Glenn tied off the reel. Then a short (250') penetration along Burma road. At the turn point, sent Gerald & Tiffany out a side opening while Glenn & I retured on the line. Then out and up. Decoed with Glenn as with prior dive. Excellent dive.

Nanaimo - Cape Breton (July 18 - 11:40)

Great day for a wreck dive - some wind and waves but not bad. Geared up and splashed - me & Gerald, Glenn & Tiffany. Down the mid-ship line to the engine room. Down into the engine room to see the "stuff". Then back along the wreck with Gerald leading as we shot some pictures. Finally up the line - I decoed with Glen after Gerald & Tiffany surfaced. Excellent dive.

Nanaimo - Carolin's Reef (July 13 - 14:00)

Second dive of the day was on Caroline's Reef, just east of the Cape Breton (like 100 ft east!). Descended anchor line, then down the wall to the sandy bottom. On the way back up, encountered a free-swimming wolf eel. Attempted to follow him and take pictures, but he was too fast. Then back to the anchor for some practice line tying before heading back in. Managed to get a minor suit flood due to hair caught in the neck seal.

Nanaimo - Rivtow Lion (July 13 - 11:30)

Nice dive day - brought Linda along for the boat ride. Geared up, dropped down line to the bow of the Rivtow Lion. Swam around the ship a few times, had a peek into the engine room and down an external corridor near the engine room (did not penetrate except the external corridor). Had a look in the wheelhouse as well as a look for octopus under the bow bumpers. Then nice ascent and in.

Nanaimo - HMCS Saskatchewan (July 6 - 12:45)

Third dive of Dave's wreck course. Headed out to the HMCS Saskatewan to do final drills and team penetration. Glen lead followed by myself, then Steve and Shirley. We descened to Burma road just forward of the mortar bay. Glenn tied off in open space, then secondary tie-off inside. We were then led by Dave down Burma road and zig-zagged in the larger compartments to exercise line skills. When Glenn's reel ran out of line (250 ft) we turned and headed back. Dave took Shirley and Steve elsewhere to practice some skills while Glenn and I exited uneventfully.

Glen's reel became jammed on exit, so I ran the reel for our "blue water ascent". This is quite a task-load skill for me as I have not done one of these since entering the rebreather world. Quite a bit different from doing the skill on OC with twins! At the 40 fsw stop, I started having some congestion in my lungs - possibly from inhaling a bit of seawater yesterday. It became quite severe as deco progressed, but I was able to continue and complete the deco and the blue water skills. Once back on the boat the "gurgle" continued for a while, so I decided to sit out the fourh dive on the Cape Breton.

(afterword) I cleared up after an hour or so, and had no recurrance of any symptoms. I have also dove since with no recurrance. Perhaps it was the bit of seawater injested, perhaps taking antihistamines before the dive.

Nanaimo - Rivtow Lion (July 5 - 18:00)

We were asked to do a quick dive to recover Steve's reel from the wreck. Vis too poor to descend to engine room so cut reel free and ascended. Turns out we left a jump reel and light inside the engine room. Again communication failure on my part. BIG LESSON LEARNED - team communication underwater is very difficult. Must work on this.

Nanaimo - Rivtow Lion (July 5 - 16:45)

Second dive of Dave's wreck course. Headed out to HMCS Saskatchewan but too windy, so back to the Rivtow Lion. Aaron went first to lay line into the engine room, then Team 2 descended, then Team 1 (us) 20 min later. Bubble checks and descended to starboard near the engine room, waited for Dave. Dave took us one by one into the wreck to perform the "lost line" drill. I was second and did OK. Then Dave told me that he had to ascend and to recover all the reels. (I thought he also told Glenn but that was my error). It was IMO too silty to descend into the engine compartment, so I recovered one jump reel at the exit and tied the other (primary) reel off inside the wrreck. Overall an excellent dive except for my error not communicating clearly to Glenn about the reel recovery exercise.

Nanaimo - Rivtow Lion (July 5 - 12:00)

First dive of Dave's wreck course (me auditing). Gear & bubble checks, then descended to stern of Rivtow Lion. Glen & I are team 1. Starting starboard aft, I lay line up to the engine room entrance and just inside (still on main deck). We then "exit" along the line in simulated silt-out conditions (touch contact). Once we're at back at the primary tie-in, we switch places and again "exit" using touch contact. Then we exit normally with me retreiving the line. After that, I had Glenn deploy the "fixed point" lift bag for our simulated deco ascent. Excellent training dive!

Nanaimo - Cape Breton (June 25, 2008)

Second dive of the day with Diver's Choice and the two divers doing the drysuit course. Geared up and descended to mid-ships of Cape Breton. No current on surface, but slight current on the ship. Swam around the stack, then down into the engine room for a bit (not to the bottom). Back out and around the deck. Swam to the bow and past on port, then back on starboard. Down passageway but exited to starboard when it enters the ship under the helicopter deck. Then back to the stack and up for "no-deco deco". Another excellent dive, though I did manage to lose my camera flash diffuser somewhere along the way (probably when splashing).

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Nanaimo - Snake Wall (June 25, 2008)

Boat dive with Diver's Choice plus two other divers. One from Ontario, here to visit and do a drysuit course, the other from White Rock to teach the course. Anchored off Snake Wall in about 60fsw. Geared up and did free descent (no line), then puddled about the 60fsw area for a bit. Headed West to the wall and descended until I spotted some anenomes on the wall - 95fsw or so. Swam along the wall for a bit taking pictures, then ascended slowly up the wall and in along the shelf, looking into cracks and crevasses for creatures. Ended up at 25 fsw, then surfaced and swam back to boat waiting in deeper water. Excellent dive!

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Nanaimo - HMCS Saskatchewan (June 21, 2008)

Second dive of the day, this time on the HMCS Saskatchewan. Geared up, splashed just after Aaron and Erin. Some surface current, and a problem with my inflator hose placement which Aaron fixed for me, then descended to the deck of the Sask. Spent the dive doing a full circuit of the decks, noting all the features of the ship. Took some pictures as well. Then back to the up line for a short deco and back to the boat. Another excellent dive on the Snake Island wrecks.

Similar clearing / nosebleed problems on this dive. Nothing major.

HMCS Saskatchewan HMCS Saskatchewan HMCS Saskatchewan
Nanaimo - Cape Breton (June 21, 2008)

First of two wreck dives on a fine, if cloudy day. Seas were fair and flat. Geared up, splashed and descended to the Cape Breton. Aaron and Erin splashed later on single OC, Justin and Alan from the Vancouver DIR Project splashed ahead of me with X-scooters. I putted about the deck of the Cape Breton, having a good time looking at all the life and taking a few photos. Saw a 5' long wolf eel swimming on the deck amidships - got a photo but not much detail (too dark due to distance). Eventually back to the line and up for short deco. An excellent dive.

A few problems clearing my ears on descent due to recent allergy attacks, but nothing major. Did break a small vessle in my nose, so small amount of bleeding from the nose after the dive.

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Tyee (June 15, 2008)

Planned deco dive at Dolphin to 150 fsw for 20 min. Arrived at Dolphin - tide was very low, so headed to Tyee. Geared up and met Mel, Greg (not M.) & friend exiting water. Greg had rEvo, Mel on Kiss. Chatted for a while then down to water. Bubble checks, headed off to seahorse to regroup. Then along wall towards Dolphin, descending as we proceeded until approx 140 fsw. Reached OC turn pressure and headed back up to deco stops. I headed back towards Tyee at 70 fsw then 50 fsw for a while, then up to deco stops and hanging out at 20 fsw for a while. Exited after a fine dive. Some bubbles reported from Diluent regulator area at end of dive. Later inspection revealed pinched o-ring on Dilutent addition hose where it mates with the regulator, which was fixed with a new o-ring.

Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee
Nanaimo - Cape Breton (June 6, 2008) - Dive 2

Second dive of the day - planned penetration of the Cape Breton (same one as the Christmas 2005 trip) plus a search for my missing camera off the bow descent line where I probably unclipped it.

Geared up, splashed, easy swim to the buoy. Descended to the bow and over the port side to search the ocean floor for the camera. Started up the side of the steep silt trench and noticed my camera where it had fallen. Reunited camera with harness d-ring and let out a few joyous yells!!! Search only took 7 minutes to find camera.

Then back up to the bow and into the hatch to the first deck. Then along the main passage that travels from the bow to the stern, with Greg leading the way and taking pictures as Mike and I swam through the various openings (Greg, then me, then Mike). Had a peek through the door off the main hallway into the engine room, then on to the stern. Out the stern, congratulated ourselves, then back inside for the return trip wiith Mike leading. Exited near the bow using a side opening - a tight squeeze for me but no problems, just had to go through tilted sideways.

Swimming back through the same passageways we had traversed, it was very pleasant to see that we had not stirred up ANY silt on our first passing. Also easy to note all the side exits cut into the ship in case a diver chooses to exit.

Normal deco and nice swim back.

All in all a MOST successful and fun dive. Also an excellent dive adventure with Greg and Mike!

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Nanaimo - Cape Breton (June 6, 2008) - Dive 1

First of two dives today, again on the Cape Breton with Diver's Choice. Mike, Greg and I geared up and splashed. No real waves, nice and sunny - was able to swim easily to the buoy "free". Descended to bow of the CB and dropped over the side to completely circumnavigate the hull of the boat along just below the main deck. Checked out every opening. Once done, checked out forward compartment and discovered that I had managed to unclip my camera at the beginning of the dive when unclipping my light! Searched the bow decks for the camera but to no avail. Normal deco with Greg (REvo) and Mike (OC) then ncie swim back to the boat.

No problems on this surface interval.

No pictures on this dive as I managed to unclip and lose my camera during the descent!
Nanaimo - Cape Breton (June 5, 2008)

Greg Mossfeldt and Mike Purdue came down after some diving at Quadra Island to join me for two days of diving on the Cape Breton with Diver's Choice.

This was the first day of diving - a very good dive on the Cape Breton. Geared up and splashed. Swam against current along line to buoy, then descended to CB midships. Greg & Mike scootered around the ship while I swam the complete surface of the main deck. Rode out Mikes OC deco and back to the boat.

Back on the boat, the winds and seas had picked up, and became quite seasick during the surface interval. Did not attempt the second dive, fed the fishes once instead.

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Madrona Point (June 1, 2008)

Very good dive. Geared up, entered little V. Tide very VERY low (0.8m). Had to "giant stride" off end into 5 ft water. Started out, saw a small (8") fish that was gray like a wolf eel and had the tail of a wolf eel, but so short - will have to look up type. Also saw a large (6") red crab in the grass.

Then headed off to the wall - kind of a roundabout way, approaching the wall from the deep side. Saw one wolf eel pretty quick, then another nearby. Took photos of both. Swam along full length of the wall (shallow to deep) then turned around and started back. Steve had a suit flood so was very cold and we started in at about 40 min.

Overall a very good dive.

Other notes: Mask leaked the entire dive which prevented the new 2.0 magnifier from working at all (misting or something). Need to possibly try other defog method and/or ensure mask seals properly. As it was I could not see anything through the magnifier.

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Elliot Park - Coffin Point (a.k.a. Evening Beach) (May 28, 2008)

Another OK Dive. Diving Drew's Prism for the first time. This was an evening dive.

Geared up, splashed at right (deeper) entrance. Descended, but tall eel grass required a brief surface. Then descended looking for the wall. Nice and relatively clear to 25 fsw; sun shining through the water and all. Once we descended below 30 fsw it became very murky - lots of larger white "floaties" obscured vis very bad. Descended rater steep slope to 70 fsw. No wall so turned the dive back along our silty trail (probems trimming out Drew's Prism). Came back up to 25 fsw and found the wall. Swam along the wall in nice vis and sunshine again - lots of rock fish and many "eel grass" crabs. Pretty sweet dive along the wall. Took a few pictures, but vis not great for photos.

Drew's Prism has been configured like mine (BP adapter, CL adapter, hose routings) but retains the plastic Prism backplate. Required 20lbs in weight harness. Some differences in solenoid sound, diluent addition, location of guages (O2 SPG hose shorter). Took some getting used to, and wasn't as nice to trim out as my Prism with the SS Prism backplate. Still, the unit performed flawlessly.

Coffin Point Coffin Point
Tyee (May 25, 2008)

OK Dive. Always good to get wet! Geared up, splashed with Gerald, Amber, Glenn and an OW class. Down to the seahorse, waited for class. Then turned right and swam along the wall, descending to 80fsw until turn pressure (for OW divers). Swam back to the chute, then along the left wall for a ways before coming up to the shallows and returning to the exit point. Tried taking a few photos, but the vis is so crappy that there's really not much point.

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Elliot Park - Coffin Point (May 19, 2008)

OW class with Glenn. Much "fun" gearing up. Spent most of the time on the surface assisting uncomfortable diver. Later did short (very short) dive with Angie and Paul. Invoked "accumulated minor stuff" rute and called dive.

Tyee (May 11, 2008)

Interesting dive. OK on surface, gear checks and bubble check. Did short surface swim as Ray said vis was pretty bad. Dropped down to 10 fsw, vis WAS pretty bad. Swam out to "v", down to 85 fsw - vis was still BAD, around 4 feet. Swam to the right along the wall, then back up aroun 60 fsw. Came back to "V" and headed in.

Did not side-mount the stage today, just carried it normally. Took camera, nothing to photograph (no vis).

Tyee (May 4, 2008)

Deco dive planned to 165fsw today. Geared up, entered water. Visibility at surface to 50fsw was around 5 feet. At around 50fsw the visibility increased to maybe 20ft. Stopped at the "treasure chest" to verify all divers OK and ready to proceed. Then turned left and descended to 165-170fsw. All muck bottom here, some starfish (small), some tubeworms. Turned dive when OC divers hit turn point and ascended to 80fsw, then headed back to the chest and inwards for deco. Spent 9 minutes at 20fsw, then puttered about between 20 and 10 fsw before exiting. Overall, a very good dive.

Set up the weight harness to ride a bit lower on my hips. That worked out very well - did not interfere with light or any other equipment. Stage bottle was "sorta-side slung". Had SPG pointing forward this day - that was a disaster. It kept getting caught on seaweed etc. The bottle was also not far enough back today. Either revert to standard stage position or do something else because the current position did not work at all well.

Tyee (April 26, 2008)

Excellent dive. Arrived, geared up and entered water. Tried new "butt mount" for bailout using scooter tow cord from tank clip to butt D-ring, short bungee from hip D-ring to chest D-ring to hold valve. Worked EXCELLENT. Descended, swam to the left at 80 fsw, looked for grandpa but he was not in his den. Returned at 70 fsw to white chest (seahorse is now bobbing at the end of the tether, broken from the chest). Continued to the right at 60 fsw until the gravel slide, then returned to white chest at 50 fsw. During the return, took some pictures of various invertebrates. Then in to practice some buoyancy drills at 30, 20, 15, 10 and 8 fsw. All in all, a very good dive.

Finn Beach - Whites Dry Suit Demo Day (April 22, 2008)

Tested the new White's Fusion drysuit. Was only able to test the lycra skin in my size, though the tech skin looked pretty nice. Underwear was close-fitting and very comfortable. Suit was comfortable but a bit bulky in the shoulders due to the zipper style. In the water, the suit was pretty nice as I followed the bottom down to about 40 ft. On the way back in, the legs trapped air around both calves which I could not dislodge. I think the lycra skin was creating a "trap point" at my knees and thighs preventing the expanding air from leaving my calves and exiting the suit. Otherwise, the suit vented very well and no air was trapped in my feet, due to the rockboots. Of course, the rockboots were too large for my jetfins, so I borrowed Glenn's "turtle equivalent" fins for the dive.

Also tested my new DUI weight harness. Removed the 6lb keelweight from my backplate as well as the 2 x 2 lb weights attached to the bottom of the backplate, and placed 10lbs (5 each side) in the DUI weight harness pockets. Very comfortable on land and in the water. Pretty much never noticed it at all. An excellent change to the gear, especially as it makes the rebreather 10lbs lighter on land.

On the way in, found the small wall on the left side of the beach (as you stand on shore looking out). Some life, mostly invertebrate. Starfish, hermit crabs (small ones), etc. Overall, not a spectacular dive - either for the scenery or the suit.

HMCS Saskatchewan (March 24, 2008)

First boat dive since Dec 2005, first time on HMCS Saskatchewan since 2003! Assembled at Moby Dick parking lot, then loaded skiff with gear and headed over to Diver's Choice ship. Large, very nice vessle. Stowed the gear, then inside for coffee and hot chocolate as we headed ou to Snake Island for our dives. On the way, we were passed by the new BC Ferry - very fast and almost no wake.

At the site, we moored on the midships buoy for the HMCS Saskatchewan, geared up and splashed. Aaron and I headed to the bouy, then descended to 20fsw for our bubble checks. As soon as I splashed, my right glove flooded at the o-ring. While descending to 20fsw, the water started up inside the suit, so after bubble checks I pulled off the glove, removed the bungee and then re-attached the glove. Wet, but at least not as cold. We headed down to the antenna array, then over the side and towards the stern. At the stern, we went under, looking at the prop shaft and the twin rudders. As we exited the other side, a rather large harbour seal could be seen flying past us.

We proceeded along the side, stopping to look in the engine room. Then we proceeded to enter a large compartment, circumnavigate it and then out. The up to another larger compartment; in, around and out again. Then we proceeded up to the filght deck near the bow, descended through two large hatches and down a long corridor. Here is where I took some pictures. Then out and back to the upline for our deco. EXCELLENT DIVE!

HMCS Saskatchewan HMCS Saskatchewan HMCS Saskatchewan HMCS Saskatchewan HMCS Saskatchewan
Snake Wall (March 24, 2008)

After a luxurious lunch and 2.5 hour surface interval along Snake Island, mostly spent watching the many eagles, we prepared for our second dive on Snake Wall. I managed to get my flooded glove and liner at least a little bit dryer during the interval. After splashing, Aaron and I headed to the anchor and descended to 20fsw for our bubble checks. Once all set, we headed along the bottom to the main wall, where we descended to 120fsw to view the overhang. Thousands of large anenomes greeted us along the wall, offering many fine picture opportunities. After several liesurely traverses of the wall at slightly less depths, we headed back up for our deco. Aaron shot a bag from 30fsw as practice and we hung out at 20fsw for our deco, then surfaced. We were a ways from the boat, so we had a bit of a surface swim, but all was good. Another EXCELLENT DIVE!

Snake Wall Snake Wall Snake Wall Snake Wall
Tyee (March 22, 2008)

Training dive today for tech class - skills circuit. Helped set up skills triangle, then waited for the divers with my camera in movie mode. Vis was pretty poor - pictures were not at all useful. Then wound reel and brought it back in, running a bailout drill in the process. Managed to slice open my dryglove with a small slice on a rock during the setup.

Tyee (March 14, 2008)

Today we did two dives in the afternoon.

Dive with Dave (Meg) and Dwayne (OC 100cf single + bailout). Down to 100ft, turned left and headed over to view Grandpa wolf eel. ALong the way got buzzed by a small (3ft) seal chasing rock fish. Grandpa had company! Took some pictures. VERY COOL. Turned the dive and headed back along a rising line, checking out the wall along the way. Very good dive.

Left Dwayne at the parking lot and headed back for a short dive with Dave. Down to 100ft, turned right this time to look at the wall. Battery warning on the Prism came on, no problem. Towards the end of the dive the solenoid would not fire often enough to maintain setpoint, so I went manual. No problems at all. A very nice second dive.

Grandpa Grandpa Grandpa Grandpa Grandpa Moon Snail
Tyee to Dolphin and back (March 7, 2008)

Excellent dive. Geared up, bubble checks and down we went. Turned left at 80 fsw and headed over to Dolphin, dropping down to 150 for 5 minutes. Reached Dolphin and had a quick look around. Then Dave called the dive because of suit flood. We headed back up at a leisurly pace toward Tyee, looking for Octo's on the way. Didn't find any. Vis was pretty good at depth, but above 50 fsw the herring run really totalled the vis. Awesome dive overall.

Madrona Point (Feb 24, 2008)

Another Excellent dive. Super day - sunny and 12 C. Decided to go to Madrona for a change. Geared up in the nice sunshine, then off to the little V and in. Swam through the maze and found the wall just by the scuba tank. Descended and swam along the wall. Found a rather large wolf eel wedged into a small opening and took some pictures. There were lots of pink anemones carpeting areas of the wall. Turned the dive and headed back along the wall, then back up, through the maze and back to the little V. Super day.

Madrona Madrona Madrona Madrona Madrona Madrona
Dolphin Bay (Feb 16, 2008)

Excellent dive. Aaron led, Glen & I followed. Geared up, entered water. Bubble checks and gear matching, then off to the wall at 50fsw. Glen did his gas switch, then we descended to 150 fsw for 20 min. Not much to see at that depth - mostly a muddy bottom with some boot sponges. Then back up to our deco stops and a short swim at 10fsw to the entry point.

Settings: PO2 = 1.3, Trimix 20-20 diluent and air bailout @ 3000 psi. Deco and bailout plans calculated using Gap 2.3.

Dolphin Dolphin Dolphin Dolphin Dolphin Dolphin
Tyee (Feb 10, 2008)

Excellent dive. Surface water seemed very cold. Geared up, buddy checks, entered water. Down to 80fsw to look for the wolf eels. Took some photos, not bad. Then off to the left to look for various critters. Took quite a few pictures. Then back to the right for a bit before returning to shore.

Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee
Tyee (Feb 3, 2008)

Excellent dive, after some initial setbacks. Had to return to Nanaimo for dive underwear, but then geared up OK and entered water. Buddy checks, then descend to 85fsw to photograph the wolf eels. Then down to 134 ft, check out rig at depth. Slow ascent along wall to 50fsw, then returned along wall to entry.

Tyee Tyee Tyee Title Tyee Tyee Title Tyee
Tyee (January 27, 2008)

Pretty good dive today.

Geared up in sunshine; trying wheezle socks again (first time in 3 years) - seem quite bulky. Also using thinsulate glove liners again - also bulky. Lots and lots of divers about today.

Entered water, checks and away we go. First over to the left at 40 fsw, looking at brittle stars and such. Playing with the camera today to try and get a better handle on the focal lengths of regular and macro. Macro button is quite hard to push with these glove liners. Then it's back towards the right and down to 80fsw as we check out the various rocks and such. Later on, found a large ling cod guarding a large egg mass. Very cool! Finally back up to the shallows to look for more creatures to photograph. Exited the water to a small snow blizard!

Overall a pretty good dive. The wheezle socks did not keep my feet any warmer than the wool ones, so back to wool. Likewise, the thinsulate glove liners did not keep my hands any warmer than the thinner cotton ones I usually use. Maybe try and find a thin wool pair.

Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee Tyee
Tyee (January 13, 2008)

Nice dive today. Geared up and spashed, down to 95 fsw and off to the right, checking out the rock formations. Along the wall to the gravel slide, then up to 50fsw for the return leg. Then off to the left and up to 20fsw to explore the shallows before exiting.

All my pictures except the surface ones were totally out of focus. I need to spend some time getting a feel for the range of the camera

Tyee Beach Tyee Beach Tyee Beach Tyee Beach
Tyee (January 7, 2008)

Pretty good dive. Some equipment issues on the surface, but no problems during the dive. Checks, then descended to 80 fsw past the sea-horse. Turned right, past the first gravel slide for about 4 min. Turned and came back at 75 fsw, past the sea-horse and onward along the "left" side wall. Got to the place where grand-dad is located, but I could not find him. Turned for home and came up to 60 fsw. At the sea-horse, returned to shallows using no-deco deco.

Departure Bay Beach (January 1, 2008)

New Year's Day dive with local SCUBA enthusiasts at Departure Bay Beach. Shallow dive, but once at the eel grass, there's a drop-off that just keeps going. We turned the dive just before 60ft. Not much to see except in the eel grass, where there were dozens of interesting nudibranchs.


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