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Well - only planned to do a couple of dives while I am here - sort of testing the water so to speak. Sunday morning and the sun is splitting the flags here. An early mist has started to burn off and by the time my brother and I make it to Ballycastle to meet up with Aquaholics, the temperature is in the late 20s. When we arrive Richard is already out with another party so we spend half an hour on the slipway getting our kit ready and chatting to some other divers waiting for the RIB (including some from Dublin who drive all the way up just to dive here - about 200 miles each way - St Abbs anyone??).

12 noon and we are packed onto the RIB and heading out into Ballycastle harbour. The sea is like glass - not a ripple and the vis is an astonishing 15m or so!! First dive then was onto an old wreck called the Templemore (I think) - it lies in about 18m and has a slight run on both the surface and at depth unless dived absolutely on slack. My brother and I dropped in and it was about then that I realised that the 10kg belt I was wearing was not going to be enough. Too late now so I duckdive and fin down to about 15m on the anchor line when I get a nasty thigh cramp and nearly abort the dive. After what happened next, I am glad I didn't.

The wreck itself is pretty broken up BUT it has been colonised by tons of conger eels - not piddly 2/3 ft things but great big 2-3m long buggers. As we watched, one of the divers produced a goodie bag full of dead fish chunks and the congers went mad - talk about a shark dive - this was (in my mind) ten times better. Gin clear water and 5 or six of these huge eels writhing all over this woman diver (got me quite excited, it did!).

Aaron eventually dragged me off and we did a tour of the wreck before running back on the lee side. I peered into a porthold and saw the body of another eel inside and it was DEFINITELY the daddy! I nearly shat myself.

This has become the BEST dive I have EVER done EVER! Forget St Abbs, this dive is the business and I want to do it again and again.

Second dive was off the back of Rathlin - we were supposed to be doing the Loughgarry - a wreck in 30m, but it was changed to a drift dive at the last minute by Richard. The RIB out to Rathlin was so spooky - the sea was ABSOLUTELY smooth - not a single ripple. As we sped across, you could see a perfect reflection of the sky in the water - very surreal. The dive itself was great - a 35 minute drift along a mile of coastline at about 20m. Lots of life and kelp - reminiscent of St Abbs again.

Overall, a superb days diving - I can thorougly recommend Aquaholics anytime. Spoke to Richard about group deals and he's going to get back to me with prices for nest year (YD trip anyone?).

To say that these dives were better than St Abbs will perhaps best convey my feelings about diving here. It was an unforgetable day and who knows, maybe I'll get another half day before the end of the week!
 

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Quality report my son, if there's more of that sort of diving to be had then I'd definitely be up for a YD Irish Jig I mean Gig next year.

Hope you get your ugly arse back in the water before you have to come home...

Oh by the way.. have you noticed how tidy we've kept the place while you've been away?? even got us some members we ave.. :thumb:
 

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Quote: Gin clear water and 5 or six of these huge eels writhing all over this woman diver (got me quite excited, it did!). Unquote: you kinky get! sounds like you had a great time Jay! maybe a future dive for YD?
?
 

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Are frogs allowed to go?   :biggrin:
 

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Jay, that sounds most egregious. Surely the YD Mystery Machine could make it over next summer...
 

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Paul my fine educated friend, please stop using big words like egregious  :shocked:

I had to go looking it up for christs sake and I'm STILL not sure what the #### you were on about.....  ;)


e·gre·gious   Pronunciation Key  (-grjs, -j-s)
adj.
Conspicuously bad or offensive. See Synonyms at flagrant.


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[From Latin gregius, outstanding  : -, ex-, ex- + grex, greg-, herd; see ger- in Indo-European Roots.]
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e·gregious·ly adv.
e·gregious·ness n.

Source: The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
Copyright © 2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.


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egregious

\E*gre"gious\ (?; 277), a. [L. egregius; lit., separated or chosen from the herd, i. e., distinguished, excellent; e out + grex, gregis, herd. See Gregarious.] Surpassing; extraordinary; distinguished (in a bad sense); -- formerly used with words importing a good quality, but now joined with words having a bad sense; as, an egregious rascal; an egregious ass; an egregious mistake.

The egregious impudence of this fellow. --Bp. Hall.

His [Wyclif's] egregious labors are not to be neglected. --Milton.
Source: Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary, © 1996, 1998 MICRA, Inc.


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egregious

adj : conspicuously and outrageously bad or reprehensible; "a crying shame"; "an egregious lie"; "flagrant violation of human rights"; "a glaring error"; "gross ineptitude"; "gross injustice"; "rank treachery" [syn: crying(a), flagrant, glaring, gross, rank]
Source: WordNet ® 1.6, © 1997 Princeton University


Dave
:classic:
 

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There is an article is this months (Dutch) Divers mag about Ireland, (just got it today in the post) it says its got some of the best dive sites in Europe! I will translate the important parts this weekend and post them for all to read, also theres a great article on twinning!  
 

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Ok - when I spoke to Richard from Aquaholics, he said that what he normally does for a group of divers is a tour of the North coastline over 5 days. Dive Rathlin and Ballycastle for a day, move further round the coast each day and then over to Donegal for a day or two. He owns a superb RIB with a 180hp outboard so boat dives all week!

I haven't got a price yet but it will be a block price which means that the cost will be divided by the number of divers as opposed to priced per head. What this means is that those who want to go will have to pay a non-refundable deposit (probably back end of this year) and then make up the difference early 2003. ONCE YOU HAVE PAID FOR YOUR DIVING, THE MONEY IS NON-REFUNDABLE - this is to ensure that the other divers are not saddled with increasing costs due to drop-outs. Seems fair to me. I'll get some prices from Richard this week hopefully and it will probably me a MAXIMUM of 10-12 divers. Accomodation can be hostels or camping again.

It would be useful to have some feedback based on these ideas please.

Regards
 

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</span>
[b said:
Quote[/b] ]Quote: from Heads Up on 10:03 am on Aug. 7, 2002
Accomodation can be hostels or camping again.
<span =''>
Sounds excellent :thumb:

Personally, I'd stay with the in-laws and you boys can camp it up in the back garden! Alternatively, if you are all friendly enough, the house next door to them is a rental jobbie and about £400-£450 a week, sleeping 6-8 easily....

Can find out more if interested as was going to do this myslef for the club but fell through...

Might even be able to arrange cut-price nosebag at a certain cafe I might have mentioned once or twice to Jay.....
 

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If its going to be the YD gig next year you can count me  and the wife in! (she won't be diving though!) just give us a couple of months notice so we can get everything aranged!
 

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Hey Guys,

Now this is a part of the world that is superb for a number of things - fishing, drinking, diving, walking, drinking, bird-watcing, chilling, drinking, scenery, local Museums on the Potatoe Famine (seriously) and drinking........what, you need more??? The local breakfasts are world class and the local folk are as happy as it's possible to get!!!

Seriously, the wife and I were out here quite recently for a wedding in a place called 'Dunfanaghy' in Donegal. It has a long beach (7 miles) and it's broad also. White sand and and shite loads of boarding houses (ten bob for the meter - I shit you  not) Mrs Moore's Boarding Houses being the best (a campus of about 8, three bedroomed gaffs, all with a full kitchen (crockery, cutelry, pans, kettle, fridge, cooker, TV - the full bhunna), living room, dinning room and bathroom with shower and a camp shop nextdoor - for wood, coal, food, ****, milk, tea coffee etc). Can't recommend it highly enough. Loads of pubs near by and top food in the area.

I do have a contact for a hard boat that will take us out diving in the 'Dun' area. He normally runs fishing trips but will do divers out to some of the wrecks - of which there are a lot in the area! - if the numbers are right.

Jay/Drift, how far is Dunfan from where you're talking about? Donegal's got some of the best beaches in Europe - again, I shit you not.

Can we tie this up?? Mrs Moore's is very cheap and will accept English/British bank cheques (so no changing money) - even though she's in the Republic.

Whay d'ya reckon???
 

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Hehe - used to caravan in Dunfanaghy with my parents when I was a kid! Is there a pub nearby called The Sheephaven or something similar? Aquanauts are in Portstewart which is across the Bann / Foyle estuary. RIB should cross it in under an hour. Dunfanaghy is quite a bit further around the coast. I have emailed Richard from Aquanauts for details (also sent him the URL of this thread so he can follow whats going on). Another possibility is to do 2 days in N Ireland coastline and then move basecamp to Donegal for another 2-3 days.
 

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Top Idea!!

I'm up for that action. Fly or drive (last time we flew in to BFS and hired a car and drove the rest of the way), it simply has to be done.

I'll check on the hard boat and get back with some 'expectables'.

Have we any suggested dates?? Diary and all that.

Let's rock.
 

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Certainly something to think about for the future, sounds great enjoyed reading your escapade Heads. Theres also some additional stuff in Rathlin http://www.divernet.com/travel/rathl496.htm
Diver did a famous article a few years back with some pretty memorable photos of divers feeding the "Tame" Congers on a wreck there.  Whats the score for accomodation any campsites?
 

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Heads,

Let me know if you want a hand sorting this one.....

*gulp* Did I really just offer to do that? Am I mad?


Ooops.... gotta go... Just realised what I've done....

:unitaz:
 

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Yes Drift,

If you've got local knowledge, then you're in the scrap.

This place (Dunfan) has to be seen to be believed - as no doubt Jay will attest? - top nights out, great nose-bag and a population (less than 300) that will ensure that what ever you want you get.

Nothing is in more than two hundred yard's tabbing distance: beach, farm, camp, pubs, food, Churches - they have three - Catholic, Church of Ireland (Anglican) and a Methodist gig, for those that might like to attend for the weekend.

The rest of the time - and you'll meet this not very much on the 'mainland', the locals are there to make sure that you get what you want you get - fun and a heavy dose of 'can do'.

So yes Drift, if you've got local knowledge, then you, like Jay and me, are in the chair.

It's got to be done lads/lasses.
 
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