Washing Machine…

7 06 2008

Saturday, June 7th, 2008 ~

Our friend, Francois came down this weekend, and he, Steve, myself, and Leigh headed down to Morrisburg (east of Brockville), for a scooter dive.

Here’s the van with 3 of ours’ gear…

We drove to our little secret entry spot (it’s not really a secret, but people don’t really know about it), and as we pulled up, the bugs were too bad to even get out of the car. We drove down to Mr. Black’s (another place we get in), and the entry wasn’t that great today, so we went to the public docks.

Public dock entry point…

We were greeted by a fellow by the name of Ray, a friendly local that likes to greet people. We hadn’t met Ray before, but we did get him on video, for the next WGD vid!

Here’s Ray and Leigh…

We geared up, jumped in, and discussed our plan. We were going to scooter in the shallows, where the current was low, cut across the old channel, over to a little island, and see what we could find. We knew that the current was stronger than normal, since the water levels are pretty high, and all of the throughway gates are open, so we discussed aborting the channel traverse should it be too strong. If this were the case, we’d just scooter and drift along the old lock system (Lock 23).

In we went…

We scootered in the shallows for a while, then dropped down the wall, and attempted to cut across… well … holy smokes… That current was freakin’ rippin’!!! We had our scooters on full pitch, and weren’t moving. We attempted the zig zag approach, and that worked for a while, but it was just more work than it was worth.. so… back across to the lock we went. We thought we’d try hitting the triggers, moving with the current.. Holy smokes, did we fly! Once we finally reached it, we stopped for a breath, and a bit of a giggle. We toured around the lock for a bit, then drifted and scootered across to the beach, back past the public docks. When we surfaced, there were many kids swimming (which there usually are), and were all happy to see diving folk. Upon exiting the water, two absolutely wonderful kids came up to us and brought us some nice, frosty bottles of water.
We were very thankful and appreciative. Steve and Leigh walked over to get the van and car, and Francois and I entertained the locals. The boys took forever, as Woofybeotch had locked his keys in his car.. Steve rescued him, and we departed for Dive Tech, where Steve’s new suit had arrived. We played around the shop for a while, and holy smokes.. Steve’s suit is slick!

Another fantastic day in the river!

Bottom Time ~ 60 mins.
Max. Depth ~ 48′
Water Temp. ~ 56
Vis. ~ 30ish and milky

I forgot to mention that we saw a giant muskie in the shallows, that was none too pleased to see us! He was massive, and had his back up at us! I guess we intruded in his territory!!!

We also saw a big carp and a big bass!

Balancing Act!

5 06 2008

Thursday, June 5th, 2008 ~

Steve and I headed to the quarry for our Thursday night skillz dive last night. We brought along the new addition to the family, to see if the new bulkheads that Steve machined for it would make a difference in its prior negativity.

Here are a couple of pics of the newly machined bulkheads…

We tossed ‘er in the water, and voila! It was pretty buoyant. We put 3 lbs of lead around the top, to see how much weight we needed to render it balanced in the water, and all was well!

Before the weight…

After the weight…

We may put on one more 6 oz. strip to get it exactly where we want it.

Having done that, we dropped down, did our valve and S drills, then headed out to the plane. Radu did another valve drill, and Martin was checking out his trim with some new gear… which really did help him… which was great. I worked on some propulsion techniques, and just practiced moving up and down in the water column, using just my breath. We then headed down to the sub for a timed ascent. I’m pleased to say that my ascents are improving.. thank goodness… We ascended to 10′, then did a timed descent, and another timed ascent to the surface. This time, I paired up with Martin.

We headed back in, and discussed the dive, despite the rain and the mosquitos!!

I was pretty happy with the evening’s dive, and look forward to doing more more more!!

Bottom Time ~ 48 mins.
Max. Depth ~ 53′
Water Temp. ~ 54
Vis. ~ 25′ and milky


Buzzin’ Around!

1 06 2008

Saturday, May 31st, 2008 ~Steve and I packed up early and headed off to Kingston. Steve was interning on the second weekend of a split weekend fundies course, and we had to be there bright and early! We cruised in at about 8:15am, to find Dan very sick. He was headed home and cancelled the course for the day. Doh! Dan never ever cancels a course, so this was a bit of a shock to everyone… Poor guy must have been dog sick. We milled around the store for a bit, until Warren, Kelly R., and Dave S. came in, and Steve did some suit measuring for Kelly. We then headed out to the Brule Road Quarry, to work on some scooter skillz! The gang had all headed out there, as the weather was crappy. I learned how to switch hands while driving, switch the light over to dump your wing, stop on a dime, turn on a dime, stowing the tow rope and towing the scooter, untwisting the tow rope… it was an absolute blast! Vis was stinky, but what fun!


Bottom Time ~ 58 mins.
Max. Depth ~ 26′
Water Temp. ~ 62/64
Vis. ~ 15′ Milky

When we got back in, we grabbed a quick Timmy’s sammy, then jumped on the boat, and headed out to the Munson! Steve, myself, Tom and Harold teamed up, while Nancy and Jenn paired up for the dive. Steve brought the video camera, and Tom had his giant stills camera. We descended on to the wreck, into darkness! The vis was nice and clear, but the wreck was dark dark dark. We did a few turns of the wreck, got some footage and pics, and Harold was putting some of the wreck back together… There were pieces of boards that had been removed/fallen off/not in the right place, so Harold put the puzzle back together. I’m still surprised he knew exactly where each piece went too… We had a most excellent dive! We hit a nice current at about 30′, on the ascent, that was pretty funny. In unison, we were turned around in a half circle… We should have captured that on video!

Here are a couple of Tom’s pics of Harold fixing the wreck…

Steve and our camera…

Me above the crane…

Myself and Steve…

..and..er.. me… dropping my knees.. pft…

Bottom Time ~ 42 mins.
Max. Depth ~ 109′
Water Temp. ~ 52
Vis. ~ Wicked but dark!

We all headed out to the Loyal Oarsmen for some dinner!

Sunday, June 1st, 2008 ~

Steve and I headed over to the shop, to find that the course was cancelled again. Poor Dan…very sick fella. We hung around for a bit, then decided to head to Brockville, to get the scooters in the water again! We went for a tour out in the channel where we found so many things! We found bottles, coal, pieces of wreck remains, and even an Evanrude motor! The current was absolutely ripping in some places, and non-existant in others.. it was quite an odd day in the river! The vis was absolutely horrible too.. so milky. When we got into the channel, and a bit deeper, the vis opened up quite a bit. On our way in, we stopped at the Gaskin, where we “said” hello to Steve S., Carmen, Mat B., Rob W., and Rick. That poor wreck is really beaten up. It appears that more of the bow has fallen in. Poor thing…

We came in, and I think I had a grin as big as Texas on my face. My first river scooter dive was a success! w00000000000t!

I had practiced all of the skills from the day before, and loved every minute of it!

Bottom Time ~ 82 mins.
Max. Depth ~ 98′
Vis. ~ From stinky to a little less than stinky
Water Temp. ~ 54

Here are some fuzzy friends that stopped by to say hello!

We then chatted with the rest of the gang as they got out, then went to Swiss Chalet for dinner, then home!

Another stellar diving weekend with friends!!