Monday, June 2, 2008

Dive Report, General Conditions and Nationals Results

This weekend saw the arrival of winter on its due date - 1 June! I was out for a dive on Saturday and felt the chill of winter -- Brrrrrr! A fresh westerly blew making it a bouncy dive with a fresh west current on the point and Thunderbolt reef. Despite the warm water I saw no yellowtail. Mark saw twice - but the fish were nervous.
Viz has improved and was 6-10 m and the temp was about 17 deg.
A large sunfish (Mola Mola)payed us a visit at the wreck of the Patti. The swell as 1.8 m and rising making my efforts to take video clips distinctly not easy - 4 clips were wasted.
I saw no sharks except the usual hoards of striped pyjama sharks tucked into their holes.
Algoa Bay was more comfortable for diving when the wind went up to about 20 knots and a thermocline was raised swiftly. I saw hoards of bronze bream on every single spot I dived - shoals of up top 200 fish. I got a nice red stumpnose and a nice bronze bream on a favourite spot - these are both good eating but the bronzbream can be a bit sea weedy - so I smoked it lightly to improve the favour.

On one spot Mark got a fish stuck deep inside a wreck and I volunteered to take my torch in and mole my way to the fish to unhook it. The fish was about 5 m into a 50 cm high cave formed by metal plates. Mark was on standby to pull me out in event of trouble and I spent a long time under metal plates following the line in with torch in hand unhooking the fish and wiggling my way out. My mask was half-full of water after my snorkel hooked on the roof and let water in. It was well outside my comfort zone but fun anyway - probably not a touch of what the World War II prisoner's experienced on their missions of tunneling out of the concentration camps.

On the Natal coast the water has turned chilly - also down to 17 deg C and the viz is poor. Orcas and great white have been sighted. Personally I do not think the orcas will harm a diver without provocation but since I have only had one experience I cannot comment with much certainty.

Marks has the nationals results up on www.saspearoranking.co.za - here is the URL
http://www.saspearoranking.co.za/Downloads/National%20results%202008%20-%20Sodwana.xls

The sea is shot here with east winds blowing fresh and a big east swell too. Friday's 4cast looks good as per windfinder.

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