After a couple of abortive weekends we managed to get wet last Friday. In fact the seas were as flat as a millpond enabling us to travel 45km out to Brian’s wreck (“Wreck X”), which we’ve tried to dive several times but never quite reached – usually because of the sea state. I didn’t get to see the whole wreck but PJ and Mike covered the whole length and report that it’s about Taha size (say 50m) but considerably older. It’s sitting in 35m of water making it deep by the standards of most of our wrecks which meant that without nitrox the dives were a bit short. Given a water temperature of 21˚C, this might have happened anyway.
The wreck was home to a big shoal of the largest jacks I have ever seen. At the risk of sounding like the fisherman describing the one that got away and knowing that things appear larger underwater anyway, some of these fish were approaching a metre in length and were circling round like barracuda do sometimes. There were barracuda around as well and although large, they seemed less out of the ordinary. A return visit with a richer gas mixture seems in order when the weather permits.
For our second dive we went to the Taha, about 17km back in the direction of home. Instead of the very big, here we found the very small – a vast number of tiny jacks and barracuda. PJ memorably described it as “like a cloud of sperm” and at one point I nearly swam off the wreck, being unable to see where I was going. All in all a very good day.
Having let the boat slip off the buoy a few weeks back, Richard was observed securing the painter with knots that would have defeated Harry Houdini. I guess no-one wants to be caught out a second time!
Saad writes the following:
“Just wanted to let you know that I run a DSDC dive on the East Coast most Saturdays.
We launch from the Fujairah Marine Club and go as far up the coast as Inchcape 1. This gives us access to all 3 Inchcape wrecks, plus Martini Rock and a few other reef dives. Max depth is 30m, but most sites are at the 20-25m mark. We meet up around 0730 and are back in the marina by 1700. The drive from Dubai is about 1.5 hours, although it will be a little quicker from Sharjah.
Although some Saturdays the weather has held us back, most of the time the sea is quite calm - esp. when the West Coast is getting battered. We've had some nice days out there.
So, if anyone from the 406 would like to join us, it will be a pleasure having their company onboard. Just let me know by Tuesday evening and I'll get their names on the roster. The boat carries a max of 8 divers - sometimes it's full, sometimes only half - so always worth finding out.”
I am pleased to report that Derek is back with us and his son, Will, is discharged from hospital. Everything vital is functioning and although he faces a couple of months off work, a full recovery is expected.