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2017 - highs (& lows)

Discussion in 'General Scuba Diving' started by Wibble, Oct 27, 2017.

  1. Wibble

    Wibble Fish don't talk
    UKD Supporter

    Apr 7, 2014
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    2017 hasn't been a great year for weather. Seems to be an endless number of cancelled dive trips due to being blown out.

    What are your highs (and lows) of this year? Are you down on the number of dives you've done compared with other years?

    What would you have liked to have done, or what great achievements did you manage?
  2. NickPicks

    NickPicks Active Member

    Jun 7, 2010
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    I haven't had much chance to dive this year, but my high was diving the Baygitano on our club barbecue weekend. A lovely sunny day, flat calm seas, 20 metres on the wreck, the light was bright, had over 10m vis (couldn't see much further than that because of all the fish in the way!). Saw free swimming congers, thousands (literally, not figuratively) of pouting, tompots, lobsters, etc. It was a fantastic dive!

    The Sunday was supposed to be diving the M2, which I'd been looking forward to, and hoping to dive for ages, but with the wind getting up for a F7, it wasn't going to happen. I did walk along the harbour wall in the morning and it was not looking nice!
  3. jb2cool

    jb2cool Moderator
    Staff Member

    Jan 20, 2008
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    Highs for me were;

    Trimix wreck diving with good friends in Croatia (I needed to get my numbers up)
    First taste of cenote/caves in Mexico
    Being invited on the Ghost Fishing trip to Scapa Flow

    Not really any lows. I could always do with more dives but I don't think I've had any cancelled this year.
  4. hawk

    hawk Doing It Rong
    UKD Supporter

    Mar 29, 2012
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    Yep - another crap year for being blown out ..... which is part of the reason I haven't even tried to do any proper deep dives and have spent most of the year bimbling at around 20m. Hour plus dives without any deco is magic :)
  5. Wibble

    Wibble Fish don't talk
    UKD Supporter

    Apr 7, 2014
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    Well down on previous years; only 80 dives this year compared with 110 last year and 115 the year before (as logged by Mr Suunto). Definitely suffered from multiple cancellations over the summer; Swanage, Eastbourne, Portland, Littlehampton... I ended up blowing posh gas down in NDAC out of sheer frustration of having 4 sea dives cancelled over a month.

    Despite this, there were several diving highpoints this year. Getting sorted out for my trimix was good; not so much passing the course, but feeling very comfortable with multiple stages and the flexibility this brings for non-trimix dives such as the excellent weekend in Swanage doing 30-40 metre dives but with 60+ mins of bottom time because I had two stages to rely on.

    Was particularly pleased to dive on the bow of the Rondo in the Sound of Mull earlier this month. In truth, there's not much to see there, but it's nice to be able to say that from personal experience. It's been a personal 'target' of mine for a while, so nice to tick it off the list. Was fantastic to watch a starfish crawling up the wreck -- almost like an octopus -- and there's so much life on her up from about 35 metres, the bow really is a relative desert compared with the abundance of life on the rest of the wreck. Even spending 15 mins at 6 metres was interesting, hovering in the lee of the rudder watching myriad juvenile pollack feeding in the stream.

    Diving in Mull is always good. Definitely some of the best diving in the UK and a place I will re-visit, hopefully next year.

    One of my favourites was a 33m dive on the SV Rushing Waters earlier this year. This sank in the 1860s and appears to have been covered over and recently uncovered, given the amount of wood still showing. One of those dives which many wouldn't like; dark, vis wasn't brilliant 0.5 to 2 metres, a relatively small wreck, and not too much rust. However I managed 70 mins bottom time diving solo, so had loads of time to spend slowly moving around the wreck watching the flora and fauna as it went about it's business.

    As for lows; not too many really, apart from the number of cancelled dives. As long as I'm diving, I'm pretty happy. As a UK diver, one never jumps in expecting certain conditions -- you get what you get.

    Actually there was one big low. Was lucky to just badly sprain my ankle treading on a loose rock during a portage of kit over to the Dinas Silica Mine in Wales. There was a definite crack as the foot went over; lucky not to break a bone. It's been 6 weeks now and the ankle's still not right. Have a feeling this will take another couple of months to get over. It's horrible to realise age is getting to me.
  6. splinter

    splinter Active Member

    Nov 28, 2010
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    The low was definitely getting the call that the Swanage weekend was blown out, 15 mins away from Swanage after a 6 hour drive. Still, it was a good weekend.

    The highs have been getting more opportunities to actually dive. Meeting and diving with some of you lot and joining a new club in Scarborough. The last couple of years I've not had much chance to dive, with work being so busy, the previous club folding and my two usual buddies diving less and less.

    2017 isn't done yet. I'm off to Oban next weekend for 3 days diving and I'm planning on carrying on diving through winter as the club has moved it's rhib up to Scotland and does regular weekends up there. There's also an O2 admin course and defibrillator course coming up which I might do.

    Next year is looking good, with trips every fortnight out of Scarborough on the club boats and more training to look forward to, as well as any trips which come up on here.

    Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk
  7. reefer

    reefer Member

    Apr 23, 2017
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    Finally getting around to learning to dive - a life long desire. No idea why I left it so long. It took a try dive over in Lanzerotte to convince me now was the time.

    Trips to various UK fresh water quaries. I doubt I will get bored of these in a hurry. There are so many skills to practice and sights to see, even inland.

    Diving with different people, joining a BSAC club.

    Bad experience on a PADI course.

    Realizing that I am totally shit at trying to stay still in water flatl(ish), without moving fins.

    Crap attempts at recovering from stuck on dry suit inflator in training session. Must remind brain that shoulder valve has to be highest point to dump quickly. I don't think my brain was working that day.

    Plans for as many trips as I can in 2018 including some sea dives. I want to improve my skills and confidence which will open up more trips to me.
    Wibble and splinter like this.
  8. JohnL

    JohnL Well-Known Member

    Sep 22, 2015
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    Definitely a high. At the start of the year, I had 22 dives, now 51 with trips to Madeira, Barbados, Malta and the North Norfolk chalk reef. Also, inevitably, Stoney Cove and NDAC. I've got to grips with my dry suit (I hope!) and improved buoyancy control and gas usage. Currently, I'm taking a BSAC Sports Diver course that is likely to finish with dives in Malta in January. I'm beginning to feel like a diver (which is the time that I should start avoiding complacency :whistling:). The high point was in Madeira, looking up to see a school of 60+ barracuda lit by the sun.
    splinter likes this.
  9. Doomanic

    Doomanic Dinosaur Wrangler
    Staff Member

    Feb 4, 2009
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    High was definitely Croatia. Good dives, good laughs, good food and good mates.

    The low was the lull after Croatia combined with other factors at home. So low that I have decided to take a step back and pursue other interests for the time being.
  10. furryman

    furryman hmmmm
    Staff Member UKD Supporter

    Jan 18, 2008
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    Low point: pulling out of the first sea dive of the year (double-wreck ex Eastbourne) owing to a stinking cold.

    High point (1): having the dive canned by the skipper owing to weather when we were already at Swanage - nice days out at the Tank Museum and walking on the cliffs instead.
    High point (2): having the dive canned by the skipper owing to weather ex Dover and going out on @Wibble 's sailing boat instead.

    Apart from a couple of meets in a scrubby lake in Leicestershire, this year has all been a bit "meh".
  11. snowman

    snowman Active Member

    Nov 13, 2010
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    A quieter year for me diving this year with no dedicated dive trips abroad or more than a couple of days in the UK, but...

    Highs : Diving the Roman Ruins at Baia, Naples, the Gulf of Aqaba, Jordan and two days in Swanage!
    Low : An incident that didn't end well for the diver involved. Let's leave it at that.

    Next year I will do a liveaboard somewhere - I really want to see Mantas, so the Maldives is my favourite!

  12. pgarrish

    pgarrish Member

    May 26, 2017
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    Diving in Tenerife and seeing flying fish and a ray was probably the highpoint, although starting to enjoy the dive (rather than the diving) after clocking up my 40th or so was pretty good. Diving with just my daughter and seeing how much she enjoyed the fish and 'pondlife' was also great, just hoping her current lack of interest is temporary

    Low was having to replace my suit - but new toys are never really a low are they :)
    Wibble likes this.
  13. nickb

    nickb Active Member

    Oct 13, 2009
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    Tomorrow will my last day on the Huskyan here in Scapa Flow, at least for this season. I've had two stints at a 'working holiday' that totalled almost 18 weeks, during which I did around 90 dives.

    I've (mostly*) had an absolute ball working with Emily, the skipper, and Alana, the full-time crew member and will be sad to leave (a few days before the end of the season as I have to return home for a wedding on Saturday).

    The highs have been having the time to explore and see things on the wrecks here that few people ever get the chance to enjoy, but particularly being involved in the work leading-up to the Royal Navy changing the battle ensign on HMS VANGUARD in the week of the centenary of its demise.

    *The lows were searching for and recovering the body of a diver lost from another boat and, 11 days later, having one of our own divers die on the deck of the boat after an incident during his ascent.

    Despite the latter events, I'll definitely be returning here next season. I love this place.

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