Archive for March 2010

Dive #62: Old Man’s Hat

Place:Old Man's Hat Buddy:Eithne
Weather:Warm, moderate wind Type:Boat (Sea Life V)
Max. depth (m):20.4 Visibility (m):10
Time down:11:22 Dive time (mins):40
Average depth (m):11.3 Water temp. (C):21.0

Equipment: All own gear. Rented steel tank.

Notes: Second of a double with Pro-dive. Third time at Old Man’s Hat in the last while. That site always has something to offer. Lovely colour. Still managed not to find the swim-through. Somehow.

We split from the guide this time to try and get more than the regulation 40 minutes, but the 180 bar that Eithne got scuppered our efforts. Some nice baby cuttlefish though. Then there was some woeful navigation trying to return to the boat.

Navigation note: as well as using the compass, check (i) the depth that the anchor is at, and (ii) the terrain around the anchor. Sheesh.





Accumulated time underwater: 1 day, 14 hours and 48 minutes

Dive #61: Magic Point, Sydney

Place:Magic Point Buddy:Eithne
Weather:Warm, moderate wind Type:Boat (Sea Life V)
Max. depth (m):21.6 Visibility (m):10
Time down:09:29 Dive time (mins):39
Average depth (m):14.9 Water temp. (C):21.0

Equipment: All own gear. Rented steel tank.

Notes: First of a double with Pro dive. Third time lucky getting to Magic Point to see the Grey Nurse sharks (bad weather the first time, and a Tsunami warning the next). And there were a few there too, but not much in the way of pictures because of the stirred up bottom.

This was the the third and fourth of a 10-double-boat-dive-pack, shared between myself and Eithne when they were on sale for $800 before Christmas. Between the price and the service, Pro-dive really are to diving what Tiger/Ryanair are to flying. I thought the crappy tiny sausage rolls were bad, but now the new rule: dives can’t be more than 40 minutes long. Bullshit. The guide nearly went mad when I stopped just before the anchor chain to take a few more pictures. Plus the usual formula for a pleasant, relaxed dive: (1) people towards the front of the boat should get in the water first (off the back of the boat) so they butt as many people as possible with their tanks on the way, (2) everyone should bunch together as closely as possible at the anchor chain before descending simultaneously, (3) getting back on the boat, make sure empty tanks are placed as far as possible from their original locations, so everyone is correspondingly far from their gear trying to get ready for the next dive. Oh and not to mention the stingy air fills…

Apart from that, not too bad. A few fishies. Breathing underwater!

Accumulated time underwater: 1 day, 14 hours and 8 minutes