In preparation for the Lanzarote trip next month 4 members went to Stoney Cove to get some diving practice. Hopefully the temperature in Lanzarote will be warmer in March than the -2 degrees C it was in the UK. It had snowed the night before but that didn’t seem to put off all the other divers who filled the bottom car park. We all arrived just before 10 and managed to park next to each other. I though we were mad going diving in such cold conditions but some people were doing it in wetsuits!
Divers: Mark, Alex
Max Depth: 21.1 metres
Dive Time: 34 minutes
Water Temperature: 4-6 Degrees C
Viz: 10 Metres
Dive Details: Surface swim out to the Stanegarth buoy to acclimatize to the freezing temperatures. Dropped down the shot onto the stern of the Stanegarth. Visibility was excellent and you could see the length of the ship.
Keeping the gunwale on our right, we swam clockwise around the Stanegarth until we arrived at the propeller, ( bad French accent, in Jacques Cousteau style) we swam into the blue exploring the deeps until we arrived at the wreck of the Defiant. Then it was onto the Belinda, the fishing boat and APC.
A loop took us back to the Stanegarth. Then following the anchor chain back to the wall. An assent to the plane cockpit and exit at the stone steps, cold, wet and in need of fried pig products. Alex.
Marks version: Stride entry from the quay and surface swam to the buoy of the Stanegarth. We descended to the wreck and finned along the port side and around the bow. We then finned to the rudder. Heading in the direction that the rudder was pointing we came across the second wreck of the Defiant. we split and passed down each side of the wreck and onto the next wreck of the Belinda. From the Belinda we made our way to the APC and after a good look around we made our way towards the shore…..or so we though! We finned for some time before we came across what looked like a Mini Metro and and a Mini. We continued further and to our surprise we found ourselves back on the port side of the Stanegarth around 25 minutes into the dive. We finned to the starboard and followed the anchor chain back to the shore for our gradual ascent and exit into the cold air (2 degrees) via the quayside steps. Very cold!
Divers: Simon, Jane
Max Depth: 35.6 metres
Dive Time: 19 minutes
Water Temperature: 4 Degrees C
Viz: 10 Metres
Dive Details: Jane planned a dive to the deep hydro box, so we got in at the bus stop and did a surface swim to the buoy. The plan was to see how cold it was as we descended and if it was too cold we would head back to the shallower water. So we went all the way to the bottom at 35 metres where we saw several small perch. After a quick look around the hydro box we followed the line up to the 20 metre level and saw a couple more perch hiding inside the broken pipe. We swam past the pole and the Blow Off Preventer (BOP), then followed the railway sleepers up the slope to the Viscount cockpit where we saw a large perch hiding in the section beneath the floor. As we got to about 6 metres the visibility got a little cloudy probably due to the amount of divers using that part of the quarry. We made a left turn at the pyramid shaped pile of rocks and got out at the easiest spot on the quayside.
Divers: Simon, Jane, Mark
Max Depth: 7 metres
Dive Time: 25 minutes
Water Temperature: 5 Degrees C
Viz: 8-10 Metres
Dive Details: Jane led the way past the Nautilus submarine and passing several trainees doing exercises. Keeping the cliff wall to her left we followed curve of the quarry coming to the 4 metre block house then onto the Gresham ship. We spent a little while looking at the 400 years old timbers then turned around and headed back. We went under the pub archways and saw several crayfish tucked up out of the way, then swam though the openings and got out at the same place as before.
Marks version: Stride entry from quay and followed Jane’s bottom to the Gresham and back again via the sub n pub. No fish seen at all so assume they all had more sense than we had by staying out of the cold water. We exited via the quay steps despite not being able to feel my feet or my hands. Very cold and time to pack the kit away and find a seat next to the fire in Nemos!