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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Woke up and remembered we were going out as part of the regular "Sunday club" dives today so spent a few minutes lying in bed (cuddling - well it is valentines day after all) trying to remember where I had last seen all my gear.... ok Suit is in the living room, regs are in the snug, wing and plate are in the farm store I think ...why did I leave them there?, oh well hope the cats havent clawed them or anything. Torch ...damn where the hell is my torch ....right better get up and put it all in one place.
Woke the burd up properly by tickling her bum and licking her nose (dont mess that one up) then lept out of bed before retaliation could be enacted.
right Suit, regs, gloves, hood, fins, wing, plate, smb etc etc ....no damn torch argh!
Helen is already up sorted and has all her gear so while I put a new battery in my VR£ I ask her to look for the torch. She puts her hand into the dive box and pulls out the torch ...argh again!

So pile all the gear into the truck and feed the cats their breakfast and we are off through to Stromness to meet up with the others.

When we get there it seems we are amoung the first to arrive so we decant all the gear onto the "Jean Elaine" (thankfully its high tide) and wait for the others. Bob and Bobby cant make it but Robin and Mel, Ian, Fiona, Barry, Kirsty (and Hollythedog), Angus and Paula (with Hectorthedog) all come aboard and we set off in the rain with Andy driving East towards the Karlsrhue.

We all kit up quickly and jump in as buddy pairs close to the shotline as Andy slows for the drop. The Karlsrhue is in shallow water with just 13m of line down to the hull and I can see the wreck as soon as we leave the surface with Helen in the lead down the shot into the 5-6 degree water brrrrrrrrrrrr!

At the bottom of the shot we quickly sort out ourselves and have a quick flurry of signals ranging from "Oooooh look a nudi" and "BIG LOBSTER" to "which way are we going?"
We set off aft into a slight tidal current down the hull side of the wreck. Now most people would think this is the boring side but life is everywhere on the hull and the bottom making this just great for us both. Soon we come across the engine room salvage where the hull was opened by blasting to remove the valuable non ferous metals of the steam equipment and condensors. Pieces of condensor still lie scattered about as do boiler plates and pipes. We keep going past the broken sections of hull through which you can see into the cavernous hull spaces, down to the stern with its large "Kedge" anchor partially buried in the silt just below its chute.
Turning the corner at the stern with its cleats and bollards we see a small scorpion fish on a plate edge and both shine our torches on it ....I think it will still be seeing spots before its eyes now. Now we pick up a little current pushing us up onto the deck of the Light cruiser, past the stern anchor captstan and along the midships line. The teak deck planking is still in place and is covered in a fine layer of silt in which you can see the track of passing hermit crabs.
An orgy of dog whelks are creating a sculpture of eggs as we pass by drifting in the current towards the bow. I have to admit that the water temperature was getting to me and we decide to leave the wreck back at the shotline but as i lead the way over the hull I realise we had missed it and it was behind us. after a moment I signal Helen that we will use a blob to go up and she points to mine. great .. thanks !
tugging my blob out the pocket i realise that i havent tied off the line to the strap so i have to use the double ender to fasten it together compleatly forgetting that i would normally use it to wind the line onto the spool. "ohbllolocks" I think as I watch it shoot to the surface.
Ah well ........ anyway we take it easy on the ascent and surface into the rain after a three minute safety stop .. 36 minutes dive time.

Brilliant dive with life, rust, wreck and an amazing underwater signal from Helen describing Whelk sex!
We cant keep the grins from our faces on the surface and with a usual swift pickup from Andy we are getting warmed up with tea, Soup, Shepherds pie and choccy brownies.

Fantastic.

Our thanks to Andy Cuthbertson on the Jean Elaine for hosting the Sunday Club as usual and also thanks to everyone today for making it just great !

x
x
Hazel and Helen
 

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Thats MISTER Blue Boots to you....
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9,371 Posts
You know, I think thats the first time I've ever seen a dive report from Hazel... nice one H!
Good to see ou both getting into the water as opposed to watching everyone else getting into it. That must be quite hard, although its your business.... seeing everyone else go where you want to must be quite hard :)

What was the water temp out of interest ? [edit - just spotted it in the original post]
 

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Official Wax-Mistress
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555 Posts
Sounds like a fab dive, glad you both had such a good time! I'm very envious reading your description and wondering when I will manage to get up that way again...
 

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Like a Pie-eating Ninja
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What's all this Nudi, Whelk, Egg stuff you are on about? Was that all the squidgy stuff that was in the way of the wreck? ;)
 
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