Chillin’ & Driftin’…

25 11 2011

Sunday, November 20th, 2011 ~

Steve and I headed down to the St. Lawrence River, to meet Blake and Eric. We know there aren’t going to be many St. Lawrence dives left in the season, so we want to make the most of our time, before the deep freeze. We met at Teapot Island Bay (it has many names; this just happens to be what I’ve known it as), and planned on scootering over to the Rockport Wall, drifting for a while, then scootering over to the wreck of the Kinghorn, then in at Rockport. We placed cars at each location, to make life easier.

Entry…

We took our gear into the water, changed, then went to drop a vehicle off in Rockport. As we got into the water, there was so much mud, that it made putting fins on a bit of a challenge. We very slowly made our way into slightly deeper water to do our predive briefings and gear checks. The mud was so bad, that we had to go right up into each others’ face to verify our stage bottles and do bubble checks.

We surface scootered over to the bowl to avoid mud, weeds, and bad vis. Once we got there, we went four across, until we got to the wall. We made our way down to 100′, where it was quite a bit darker, and enjoyed both scootering and drifting across the wall. We saw a few big fish, and directed ourselves toward where we thought the line to the Kinghorn would be. Voila… we found it, and continued on to the wreck. We played around a little, and once inside, Eric asked me if I was cold (since I usually get cold). I signaled that I was good to go! Then.. I guess I had it in my head, and I began to feel chilled.. Bahh! *Signal*… er.. Eric? I think I might be a little chilly, now…

So.. we turned and headed for shore in Rockport, with Steve and Blake coming along shortly after. Eric and I did notice that we had to dial back a bit on our scooters, as Steve and Blake’s RB80s did seem to cause a bit more drag in the water. Interesting note!

We definitely had a really fun dive! I did get some video, but it was quite dark…

Bottom Time: 1 hour, 8 mins.
Max. Depth: 106′
Water Temp.: 48F

Exit…

I sat with the gear, while the fellas went for the vehicles…

 

Of course, there was just enough time for some silliness…

Once everyone came back, we loaded up and went to Boston Pizza for some grub! Let’s hope we can get back to the river next week! Winter is coming!





It’s June… Let’s Go Diving…

28 06 2010

Saturday, June 26th, 2010 ~

Today, Steve, Chris, and Francois were going for another dip on the Jodrey. We were hoping that the pouring rain we had on the way down, would taper off as well. We were on an afternoon charter.

We packed up the trailer for two days of diving, and headed down to the Brockville area.

Andy was up for some Diving Goodness too, so he and I were going to do some exploring upstream, and perhaps visit the other fellas on deco. As we piled the gear up at the dock, we wondered if it would all fit on the boat.

Apparently so. We loaded everything, with skepticism, but it all fit… Comfortably too, I might add.

I’m wondering if Andy was checking us in on Twitter…

Captain Chantal was at the helm.

We made our way to customs, where we actually had quite a friendly Officer greet us. It was nice to see a smile. She waived us through, and we were on our way. We had mostly geared up before we left the dock, as there was a bit of a chill to the air.

Me…

Chris – All ghetto, all the time…

Frankie…

So… how you doin’? 😀

Once we anchored and tied up to the mooring tree, we loaded up the gear lines with bottles and scooters, and kicked the three boys off of the boat.

Predive checks…

Andy and I took our time gearing up, and hung out in the water for a bit, giving the guys a good head start. Their run time was going to be alot longer than ours, so we were not in much of a hurry.

We finally got in, did our checks, and dropped down the wall. I figured I’d give Andy a teaser of part of the descent onto the Jodrey. We saw a bunch of bubbles, and saw the boys on one of their deco stops. We stopped by to say hello, then went on our merry way, up the wall a bit, then for a ride upstream. I showed Andy some of our deco route, and where the deco chair sits. The vacuum cleaner seems to be missing, but we did see a new table. We then decided to go upstream to see what we could find.

The visibility was absolutely horrible. No doubt due to all of the rain we’ve had this week. We could barely see 10′ in front of us, and although we were following a wall, in one direction, there wasn’t much point in doing too much investigating here. We just couldn’t see. I tried dropping our depth a little, to try to get out of some of the crud, but to no avail. I also knew that we had many back eddies in our path, so I did not want to venture too far away, seeing I only had a short body scooter with me. Andy had his Mini G.

We still did have fun, venturing along the wall, and saw some very interesting rock formations, but made our way back to the “Deco Bowl,” where I showed Andy the spot where we ditch some of our gear on deco, and stay out of the current. Although, there was a bit of current there today. We hung about for a bit, relaxed in the water, and played with the fish. We then went to see the others on their 20′ stop, then back to the boat.

Quite a relaxing and fun way to spend an afternoon. There was quite an aggressive bass, just under the boat. We tried to leave him alone, but he kept coming to see us. Perhaps he was just checking us out.

Bottom Time ~ 44 mins.
Max. Depth ~ 80′
Water Temp. ~ 64
Visibility ~ Varied, but not more than 20′ in the best spots

Chris and Andy, in their matching shirts…

We packed up, then headed over to Gill and Vian’s place for some homemade pizza… Yummmmm….

Sunday, June 27th, 2010 ~

Today was scooter day! Chris decided to hit the road early, so myself, Steve, Francois, Andy, and Eric B. went over to Island 99/Teapot Island for some investigation.

This is a pretty cool dive, once you get past the giant hill to get in, the silty entry, and weeds. You surface scooter out for a small jaunt, then drop down into the bowl, where the visibility usually improves.

As we were bringing our gear down to the water, there was an older gentleman with his dog, playing in the water. He said that she was 18 years old, and he brings her here twice a day. She’s deaf and blind, and her hips are starting to go, but she just loves the water. He carries her up and down the hill, as she cannot do it on her own anymore. She did seem happy though.

Time to gear up!

Andy, and his “new to him” magnum…

Eric, and his new magnum…

Frankie…

I think Eric was thinking that his mat was better than Steve’s mat…

We finally got in, did our checks, then made our way through the weeds.

Again, visibility wasn’t that great, but there are alot of pretty cool things to see on this dive. Visibility was about 15′ at best, and more murky, the closer you were to shore.

We found Santa’s sleigh on the way out again, which is always a treat. I’m not sure what he did with all of the pressies though. 😉

We followed the wall at varying depths, seeing some cool bottles, interesting rock formations, and a whole lot of really big fish. There were carp, bass, sunfish, catfish, sheepshead carp, as well as a bunch of mud puppies. There were some pretty big giants on this dive.

We tooled around near the island for a bit, then made our way back to the dock. As we came close, we heard Sea Doos and boats zinging by, so Steve launched a bag, and we made it back in safely. There is always alot of boat traffic this time of year, which is why we usually reserve this dive for early spring or late fall. It is such a nice dive though, so sometimes it is hard to resist.

Bottom Time ~ 90 minutes
Max. Depth ~ 99′
Water Temp. ~ 64
Visibility ~ 15′ at best

Another fantastic weekend of Diving Goodness!





Island 99

18 04 2010

Sunday, April 18th, 2010 ~

Since we hadn’t been back to Island 99/Teapot Island in quite a while, we decided to give it a whirl. We wanted to get in there before the weeds overtook the shallows. It can be a royal pain in the behind to scooter through them in the summer.

DGTU…

We weren’t sure what to expect for visibility, due to the rain that we’ve had all week.

Steve, Jeremy, and Jay, scouting the area…

We brought the gear down the hill, and got ready for business…

While gearing up, Jeremy blew a wrist seal, and was unable to dive. Had the water been a bit warmer, the tape option may have worked…lol.

What is great about this spot, is that there can be so much to see. It may appear to be just a giant slope of rock, but there are holes and crevices, fish, crayfish, various items, and even frogs. There was quite a layer of algae along the bottom as well, which we didn’t see as much of last year.

Steve had to look closely for this fella…

Our first find was a sled, which was a pretty cool find…

The terrain is a sloping rock wall, and the water was pretty green. We did not get the visibility that we had expected, but it was still a lot of fun.

Steve found a little rock pile to hide behind. Shall we play “Where’s Blanchard?”

We did quite a tour, found a bottle debris field, a few large crayfish, then made our way back, where we played around in the shallows, taking pictures. We were only in two feet of water, so we had to be extra careful to leave the algae on the bottom.

Steve and Jay…

Steve…

I took the camera off of the scooter mount, and handed the camera to Steve.

Me…

Jay and I…

Jay…

Me…

Bottom Time ~ 63 mins.
Max. Depth ~ 89′
Water Temp. ~ 42
Vis. ~ 25′ and milky (Yes, the camera makes it look nicer)

The top of the hill, with the island on the far right…

Another fantastic day of scooter diving goodness. Go team!