March 7, 2014
After a sort of disappointing dive at the last location – four divers and two bugs – we decided to go to a nearby sunken barge.
This was a spot I had no clue even existed.
The Dive Master said, “The barge has openings in the side; There are bugs inside, but if you’ve never penetrated a wreck before, don’t do it.”
Hmm – I had my plan now.
The next spot was so close, I didn’t even know that we actually moved.
We had pulled anchor, and I heard the engines, but between the big swells that were making some puke over the side and the short ride, I couldn’t tell that we had actually moved anywhere.
After more than an hour surface interval, I jumped over and swam to the anchor line.
I submerged first, determined to get to the barge first, but like the last dive, some divers can equalize faster than me, and I was beaten to the anchor.
Logged SCUBA Dive #465
Same Ocean Diving With Chipper, Nice Bob and the other Jeff
Secret Location: 54 68 65 20 61 6d 6d 6f 20 62 61 72 67 65 20 6e 65 78 74 20 74 6f 20 74 68 65 20 6c 61 73 74 20 6c 6f 63 61 74 69 6f 6e 2e
Redondo Beach, CA, USA
In With: 2900 psi
Out With: 600 psi
Max depth: 82 feet
Waves: A lot of surface chop, fairly calm underneath
Visibility: 10 feet, a lot of silt
Water Temperature: 62 degrees
Air Temperature: 64 degrees
Total Bottom Time: 24 minutes
I followed the anchor line to the barge, but visibility fucking sucked.
I soon discovered Nice Bob and the other Jeff were leaving a James’ Bond type trail of kicked up silt to ruin my visibility.
Instead of going along the barge, I went over and pinned a lobster within 30 seconds – it was legal and I bagged it.
I cut over the barge and dropped to the other side where there was a big hole in the side.
So, there’s lobsters in the barge?
I went in; maybe about 15 feet, and then towards the right, into another compartment.
No bugs; I turned around to a view of nothing but silt.
Fuck! – it’s a small barge and I have plenty of air, but I should have taken a compass heading before doing such a dumb-assed maneuver.
Which way is out?
Then, I saw a light shining in from the outside.
That diver was later identified as Chipper, who I thought was trying to show me the way out.
In actuality, he was just looking for bugs.
I went towards the light, only to approach a hole the size of a football.
Hah! At least, I know where the side is, and the entrance is just one compartment over.
I found where the first compartment was and the exit.
As I was going out, Chipper was coming in.
I waited to see if he needed help getting out, but left after a minute or so.
After telling my story, Chipper later recounted that, “Yeah, I didn’t think it was such a great idea going in there, especially after you had kicked up all that silt.”
There were bugs under the barge, but out of reach.
I did another circle, until I found the anchor that was resting on top of the barge and started heading back.
I made an extended safety stop, before surfacing.
The rest soon made it back; Nice Bob and the other Jeff got skunked, Chipper got two lobsters.
Chipper’s two lobsters were fighting in his bag.
The grappling continued on the ground.
My catch for the night – this monster bug weighed almost two pounds.
Well, the one bug I caught cost about $100 – even though the fish market is cheaper, I did have fun.
However, I’m not sure if I can afford another trip this season; this might be it.