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November 1, 2008 11:14am Saturday
More Lu-Jac's, more Captain Phil. Though this time we weren't whisked away. It's the little things that matter, when you think about it. Yet another beautiful Saturday. There's an area right off of Friday Harbor that the University of Washington studies. And oh man, I can now see why.
Here's about 20,000 words worth.
August 2, 2008 1:15pm Saturday
Another beautiful Saturday... Another beautiful Saturday for Diving! And they say it only rains in the great Pacific Northwest...
The dive sites themselves were in the San Juan Islands. Both were boat dives that Captain Phil from Lu-Jac's Quest took us to.
The first dive was just off a marine sanctuary (a big rock with a sign on it stating as much), where we were fairly shielded from the current. I forget the name, but it was alright. There wasn't very much topology, but there were lots of groups of rocks, which meant lots of nooks and crannies for the macro life to hide and live in. My dive buddy and I found a couple large nets that had been there for a long while and where the kelp was thriving in and between it (it no longer posed a killing hazard and would cause more harm to remove than to leave). We also found too many fishing lures. Seeing as this area was a preserve, it was disappointing. On the rocks that went above water, we saw a few seals, and in one case, a mama & baby.
The second dive site was the west wall off of long island, just south of Lopez Island. From my 12 dives in different locations in the San Juans, if you could choose one dive, this one should be it. We got in just as the current switched directions and therefore had a nice slow drift dive along the wall. My dive buddy and I stayed about 60 feet down, and along the way saw many of the things you see in my picture collection. Of note, the Strawberry Anemones were a really good find (that Captain Phil told us about before-hand). It's really cool to see the ground just blanketed by all these animals - even stacked upon each other. The visibility was 45 feet! Yes, that's the best visibility I've ever seen ever in the Puget Sound. That plus the sunny day, good company and other good picture fodder, and I enjoyed myself immensely (as did most of our other divers (except the ones who got flooded dry gloves (and who lost a fin (right, Andrea?)))). ; )
Ready for the pictures?
July 12, 2008 9:40am Saturday
Thanks to Dave Rintoul for setting up this boat dive with PortHole Dive Charters. Captain Mike was great and I now have four new dive buddies (Dave was already a dive buddy). Good day, gentlemen!
The first dive was excellent and something we'll have to repeat. The site was named Four Mile Rock or West Point Barges, depending on how you felt. The dive was about 90 feet at its max and visiblity was 20-25 feet. This is really a fish nursury with lots of pregnant rockfish and ling cod. I even found a young warbonnet! Feel free to look at the pictures for verification.
The second dive had far worse visibility and quite a nasty current. Gene and I stayed to the bottom and followed a break-neck pace, eventually finding a wreck. This one was about 30 feet long and was old steel. It had been there quite some time and had remnants of recent Giant Pacific Octopus activity (lots of fresh crab shells and a nice burrow carved out under the boat). A good day of diving.
Happy Birthday Dave!
July 5, 2008 3:41pm Saturday
It was another great day in the San Juan Islands, even as cloudy as it was. We planned to do 3 dives with Lu-Jac's Quest though a few of us ended up diving four (by my books anyway). There were nine of us total which meant there was a little extra space on this 40 foot boat. Around five of us had cameras (it seems to be more and more common around here) though only I had one that took two hands to operate.
We weren't going on the best day for dives, as the tidal swing was pretty large (9 feet by some accounts). This meant a few things. For one, Skipper Phil had to run the engines at 1800 RPM instead of the usual 1500, just to make the dive sites. Also, the dive sites were chosen for us, as we needed to dive in the protective shadow the leeward side of an island gives you during current.
Our first dive was near a ferry terminal. What current there was took us toward the dock ever so slightly. Our Skipper, Phil, wasn't sure of this particular site but knew that we *could* dive it. We found lots of three things on this dive. Crabs, Nudibranches, and silt, lots and lots of silt. The viz turned out to be 10 to 5 feet, if you happened to going through a silt cloud kicked up from one of the other divers. Lots of red rock crab mating, it turns out (see the link below for proof).
The second dive was the best of the day, and it was one many want to do again. In particular, we found a giant Puget Sound Crab about 45 feet down. It maintained its defensive stance and after I was done taking a picture of it's not-so-pretty face, I tapped on its back. This big father crab reared up and drew its claws. This thing was not only big, but strong!. Time to make our way... We also saw lots of nudis, anemones and in particular, two Red Irish Lords (look for the pictures with the fish that have orange specs in their eyes). Good Stuff. These pictures are from our first two dives.
As the last two of what turned out to be four dives looked to have low visibility and strong current, I opted not to focus on photography and instead, focus on my dive buddy. This was a good choice. As soon as we jumped off the boat on our third dive, we started to move. Quickly. We immediately descended to about 40 feet. For this dive, we held hands, with each of our other hands holding our flashlights. This was a good choice. We started doing a fly-by of many rocks, crabs, kelp, and whatever else we didn't have time to notice, let alone see. The viz was 5 feet max, and we were skirting the rocks, using our fins to propel us out of the way of some, but closer to others. I estimate our speed to be 2 knots. Underwater, with no viz, 2 knots is huge. The funny thing, was I wasn't frightened - just intrigued. It actually was a kick - zooming along at high speed, a bunch of mysterious stuff springing forth from the pea green soup we were being propelled through. About 7 minutes in, we lost sight of the ground. A couple minutes later, we decided to ascent do out safety stop (15 feet). What was interesting on this dive was we were clearly being carried up in the water column, and then down - quickly in both directions. I felt my dive buddy being pulled and pushed. After fighting this yo-yo of decompression, we surfaced only to find ourselves in a bunch of whirlpools in the middle of the cut between the two land masses to either side. We were basically stuck. This is actually great fun if you don't get scared. I inflated my drysuit to ultra-large proportions (think the Stay-Puffed Marshmallow Man) so I'd have fun floating at the surface instead of fighting to stay above it. The boat quickly came to pick us up, after which Captain Phil apologized, and took us to a more docile fourth dive. Even though the third dive was only 13 minutes, I'd do it again. Wheeeeee!!!
June 28, 2008 10:01am Friday
Kelly, Steve and I took a Friday to go diving. What a beautiful day. The diving was pretty good too. Three Dives, all boat, current dives. A lunch of fresh Giant Scallops and Kelp Greenling (except Steve, who had PB&J) followed the first two dives, and came before everyone trying out a new site, which we all enjoyed.
I've got 45 pictures to share. Take a peak.
May 23, 2008 10:31am Friday
11 good dives. Thanks Bill & Annie - and Steve!
Dive Trip Report
The venue is here: http://www.godspocket.com
Overall, the trip was pretty sweet.
Food was excellent and plentiful Ė lots of variety too.
Saw lots of larger wildlife on the way there and/or on-site.
The day-long trip up there was painful Ė largely due to border crossing and BC ferries, and was still 400 miles of driving. Price wasnít cheap ($1107 CAD) but included all diving, food, lodging for four nights and five days, everything except the ferry to/from Vancouver island ($30.30 CAD each way) and tips. The dive boat was pretty well setup Ė a 40-foot that could accommodate 12 divers pretty nicely. I got 11 dives in during the 3 dive days, 10 boat and one shore.
Operators Bill & Annie were awesome.
Weather was outstanding (sunny and warm with some breeze every day), though we learned that this isnít typical. It also probably contributed to some ebb tides having less viz than is usual.
For some very-good to great pacific current diving, this place should be on your list (Turret-Rock (some call it Tremble Island) dive was pretty intense and quite memorable - in a good way!).
April 1, 2008 9:06am Tuesday
November 07, 2007 7:14pm Wednesday
July 10, 2005 3:59pm Sunday
June 9, 2005 10:00am Thursday
December 31, 2003 12:59am Wednesday
October 22, 2003 2:56am Wednesday
Write this down:
Serve promptly with piping hot nachos - examples as shown below:
September 08, 2003 12:01am Monday
While this isn't new, I thought it was good enough to show y'all...
August 31, 2003 8:57pm Sunday
March 26, 2003 11:49am Wednesday
So, apparently anyone can support terroism. According to MSNBC, any Joe Schmoe can post terrorist information on their web site.
Just so y'all know, uh, this is the only terrorist information on JoeSchmoe's web site - and funny enough, it's how I'm not posting terrorist information on JoeSchmoe's website.
Course, since I'm posting about not posting, does that mean I'm really posting? -or is it cancelled out by the fact that the post is about non-posts? Either way...
"I am not a terrorist!"
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