Dive Report for Friday 3rd November 2017
A plan was hatched at the Vic on the preceding Wednesday evening for the annual post storm scallop dive along the reef at Gimblet rock before the weather settled back to wind and rain. The only window appeared to be Friday morning so with Dewi, Andrew, Brett and me able to find the time we met up at the sewage works at 7.45am to find that the wind was already up and the sea quite choppy. Undeterred, we donned drysuits and transferred the gear into two vehicles to drive over to the far side of the caravan site to start the dive on the old concrete slipway. Our two pairs were quickly down to a threesome as my new neck seal ripped as I put it on. I followed their initial progress from a rocky promontory but could only spot 2 sets of bubbles as they passed by. It turned out that Dewi had lost the others very soon after entry and had then headed further out. Andrew & Brett were back in after about 45 minutes with just 2 scallops each. They each described the scene along the reef as carnage with many, hundreds perhaps, of dead scallops trapped in the rocks. Viz. had been a cloudy 2 metres, which went some way to explaining the loss of Dewi. We got to the hour with no sign of Dewi from my vantage point on the rock and with it being a big spring tide I was starting to get anxious. However, just when thoughts of calling the coastguard were becoming real, he emerged from the swell having managed to get himself caught by the only fisherman on the beach. He was carrying a bag of scallops but when I tipped them out there were only empty shells, which did fit together to make a dozen empty scallops!! He also used the word "carnage" to describe the scene along the reef. The day's catch was offered to Chris, who has since confirmed that they were excellent, so the day wasn't a complete washout. As it happened the weather forecast was far from accurate as the sea settled down to an oily calm on Friday afternoon and was millpond on Saturday morning. C'est la vie!
Dive Report for 19th November 2017
With the weather looking promising for Sunday I sent out the offer of a trip on Top Cat. To my surprise only Andrew showed any interest.
Not to be deterred I arranged for a cox and agreed to meet at 930.
David called at 8am to volunteer his services, which I jumped at .
He hadn't checked his emails, but was on the beach walking the dogs and saw the sea and couldn't understand nothing was going on when he realised he had not checked his mail:
We eventually got out around 1015,as I had forgot my mask. We dived Cillan near the anchors trying to find a pot, failed miserably. It was mixed ground of cobles, sand and some clay. The life was interesting with Squat lobsters, corkwing wrasse, lobster as well as 5 octopus. Vis was around 2 metres,with a depth of 17-18 metres depending which computer you looked at. The temperature was 12c. The second dive was off Penarfynydd point, around 500 yards out. It was another pot mark, but the vis was only 2 metres so it had been prediscussed that if this were the case we would do a scallop run, which we did. This was the equivalent of a night dive, at 23 metres. We did manage to get some scallops and sent them up to the boat. One interesting thing that we saw on this dive was a crab that had made its home in a scallop shell, this on its own made the day for me. When we got back to the boat there were no scallops, which was a bit of a bum to be honest.
To cut a long story short I noticed David had not put the shot back in the bin, so on reaching the Rheol I checked the shot line bin and there were the scallops.
Another good day and a special thank you to our designated cox even though he had me going for a while. Apparently the bag of scallops came up right by the door and David just leaned out and picked them up.