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  • November 18, 2013

    Excellent Conditions On The Decline

    November 17, 2013

    My sister is in town from Reno and I have some birthday celebrations to attend in Palos Verdes, so there’s nothing like a morning dive to combat the upcoming stress.

    I arrived at 8:20 AM to find everyone almost geared up.

    Apparently, Reverend Al trusted the Pacific Wilderness guys who had already checked out the conditions and went straight to gearing up

    “They say it looks great,” Al said.

    I hurried and geared up.

    Reverend Al, Eric and myself walked to The Point, where it was really high tide with some rollers coming in.

    I dawned my fins and waited for a roller to come in so I could ride it out.

    I was sitting on a rock, snorkel in my mouth, when a roller swooshed in – I leaped off into the receding water, to land on my stomach, grounded on a boulder.

    I looked up to see an even bigger wave coming at me.

    “Oh, shit!”

    It picked me up, slammed me against another rock and rolled me around until I could ride the water out.

    “You picked the worst time to get in the water,” Eric said.

    We swam over the pinnacle and dropped.

    Logged SCUBA Dive #457

    Dove With Reverend Al and Eric

    Terranea Resort, Off The Point
    Rancho Palos Verdes, CA, USA

    In With: 3000 psi
    Out With: 600 psi
    Max depth: 64 feet
    Waves: Surface chop, some rollers
    Visibility: 15 feet at best
    Water Temperature: 61 degrees
    Air Temperature: 72 degrees
    Total Bottom Time: 59 minutes or so

    Conditions look shittier.

    Visibility has declined since last week, so I’ll keep the underwater photos to a minimum.

    We spotted a few lobsters under the rocks – this is now a marine preserve, and I think a lot of the lobsters have moved here seeking sanctuary.

    Layered reef.

    Along certain reefs, there’s an interesting “layered” structure to them.

    We also noticed a lot of fish, including male Sheephead, that had disappeared before the fishing ban.

    I was diving with an Aluminum 80, Reverend Al had a steal 100 – he handed me his auxiliary regulator when I was down to 600 psi, and I continued my dive, holding onto his BCD and breathing off his tank.

    We surfaced just outside the cove; Al had 450 psi left.

    I think a big problem is that I need some maintenance on my gear – Eric noticed I had leaks coming out of my first stage and another leak out of my console – I have to take it in for service.

    There were some rollers in the cove – by far, it wasn’t the scariest exit that I’ve ever made, but it was not as easy as I was hoping.

    Group photo.
    Sunday’s Group.

    Non-diver Kate and Tina.
    My sister Kate and her friend Tina joined the debriefing.

    Me with my siblings.
    A group shot with my siblings – Me, Professional Debriefer Paul and Non-Diver Kate.

    Ever wonder why your car doesn’t get shit on by pigeons when you’re at Terranea Resort?

    It’s because the Falcon Man chases then away…

    The falcon dude at Terranea Resort
    The Falcon Guy.

    The Falcons.
    …and his falcons.

    Debriefing continued until 1 PM, with diving stories and a Pacific Wilderness rant against my Luxfer Aluminum tanks from the 1980s.

    “Those things could explode and hurt or kill someone,” I was warned.

    Tank replacement is on my list.

    1 Comment

    1. Yes, it is time for you to try out an HP 100 steel tank with DIN valve. But this will probably also require a regulator upgrade or see if your current reg will switch over to a DIN fitting. I did this when they came out and still dive my HP 100 from 1990. Couple this with my original USD Conshelf Reg with the brass second stage and it makes for a nice military grade bulletproof reg. The only other thing is they are heavier than the aluminum 80, but easy to get used to even for beach divers.

      Comment by halibug — November 22, 2013 @ 7:14 am

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