Sunday, 15 May 2016

Wraysbury Dive Centre - Sunday 15th May 2106

Another sunny Sunday, another training dive trip. 9 of us went to a very busy Wraysbury for Ocean Diver (Emily and Felipe with Lee and Victor) and Sports Diver (Anne and Georgi with Sally) training. Clive and Simon stayed dry and helped/filmed. There were huge numbers of divers, freedivers and snorkelers at Wraysbury today, but the place is big enough to accommodate us all. Visibility had been affected by all those fins churning up the silty bottom, but there were clearer patches.  Water temperatures were about 13 degrees at 8 metres, warmer in the shallows, so nobody got too cold.

Dulwich Festival Fair stall - Sunday 8th May 2016

Teresa, Colin, Sally, Daniel, Clive, Sara, Lee and Victor staffed a stall at today’s well-attended Dulwich Festival Fair on Goose Green, East Dulwich. Although our stall was tucked in at the end of a row behind a handbag seller we still got a good amount of interest from people passing by, and Colin went out into the crowd with Sara, bravely wearing his wetsuit in the 27 degree heat to attract interest. BSAC’s blue furry logobugs and balloons proved popular with kids. We ran the stall to promote diving and the club, advertise our programme of free try-dives, and mark the club’s 60th anniversary. 

Tuesday, 3 May 2016

Scubafest, Mevagissey - 30th April - 2nd May 2016

“The wrasse are extremely amorous at this time of year” – Lee.

Over the early May bank holiday weekend we did 5 dives in 3 days from the RHIB Stingray ( ), skippered by Mark. Clive had booked us onto the dives, and lucky for us the weather enabled Mark to collect us from the beach at Pentewan Sands (the campsite where we stayed) for all the dives.

Some of us arrived on Friday afternoon, the rest on Saturday morning. Our first dive was at Black Head Reef, not far from Pentewan. This was a scenic dive, with visibility at 5-ish metres. After a short break on shore, we dived the impressive Kanteong wreck (or, at least, the parts of it that weren’t salvaged). Visibility was better here, and large wrasse and a cuttlefish were seen. On Sunday we ventured out to Gwineas (Gwinges) for another scenic dive (but with bonus wreckage, possibly of the Ardongorm), and later did a dive very close to Pentewan, at Penare Point. Monday’s only dive involved us travelling further south to do Curran Vean Reef.

“There were small animals eating each other and having sex – wonderful!” – Lee (again).

We didn’t think much of the campsite’s restaurant (The Seahorse), so ate at the nearby Ship Inn on Saturday and Sunday nights, where there was a hilarious pub quiz on the Saturday in aid of the charity CHICKS. Some of us sampled Scubafest’s evening entertainment on Sunday evening, visited the stalls in the marquee, and said hello to the BSAC people running the try-dives, but we otherwise didn’t get heavily involved in Scubafest. The event’s food and ents marquee had been cancelled due to lack of interest, and by Sunday there was a real feeling that Scubafest was already over – we only saw one other dive boat that day (Woodpecker, presumably running from Mevagissey), and nobody else seemed to be diving on Monday. The compressor people (who had replaced the team from Bauer at the last minute, after they pulled out) had understandably packed up and left by Monday morning.

The weather was excellent on Friday and Saturday, but was grey on Sunday and Monday morning. Seas in Mevagissey Bay were pretty much flat all weekend, which was great. Water temperatures were about 10 degrees C.

Our accommodation at Pentewan Sands was fine – we stayed in 2 cabins (4 of us in one, 5 in the other). On Monday we could make use of the on-site pool, which had been used for try-dives on Saturday and Sunday.

Everyone did their bit to make this a successful trip. Thanks, Clive, for organising the diving and accommodation and being DM, Sally for herding us cats, providing pizza and hot chocolate and sorting out fills, Geraint for bringing a van which proved immeasurably useful, and Pat for the initial investigating and the brandy and lovage sampling session.