On the way back to Lowestoft after the morning dive Mark Crame plotted a shallow wreck into the GPS and we made a plan to come back in the afternoon and dive it. The divers and RIB were all refuelled and we headed off. As we got closer to the site it looked like another boat had beaten us to it. A boat was already over the dive site, so we pulled up alongside to talk to him, it was Jeff on his boat (Timmo2). It was decided to leave Jeff to it and dive a different site. We soon found the wreck of the Alto and grappled into something on the second attempt. Kitted up and entered the water.
Divers: Simon Boor, Jane Boor, Mark Crame
Max depth: 21.5 metres
Dive Time: 26 minutes
Water Temp: Max 18.4 degrees Min 16 degrees
Visibility: 5+ metres
Dive Details: With the found wreck (believed to be the Secret) already anchored upon by the time lunch had been consumed ashore we headed off to find the Alto, a 2226 GRT steam cargo ship sunk on 16th July 1916 by a mine laid by UC-1, 4 miles off Kessingland while in ballast from Rouen to Newcastle. This was Mark’s first Lowestoft dive and conditions couldn’t have been better – inshore shallow dives aren’t often possible in this area. Located easily from the co-ordinates supplied and pinpointed on the sounder the grapple was sent down and bedded in with the divers heading down the shotline onto a sand and stone seabed. Visibility was in the region of five metres and the initial annoyance of missing the wreck was replaced after a few finstrokes which gave rise to a large shadow and a few more to a solid metal wall rising some metres from the seabed. With a distance line attached the group set off to explore along the top of the wreck, seeing numerous brown and velvet swimmer crabs in the open and some lobsters hiding amongst holes and crevices. Many small pout were seen shoaling before a return was made to the grapple and an ascent up the shotline to Lowestoft Diver.