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    July 28, 2014

    Dive Report: Flat Ocean, Crappy Visibility, a UFO and Lightening

    July 27, 2014

    I arrived at Terranea right at 8 AM.

    The weather was strange – 82 degrees, humid and overcast; the weatherman forecast a 20% chance of thunderstorms.

    But, the ocean was flat, and flat conditions usually mean good visibility.

    I met Reverend Al walking back from a swell check.

    “It’s flat, but Chipper is here, too, so that ruins the visibility,” Al said.

    Yep, it’s some kind of a jinx – whenever Chipper and I both show up at the same time to dive at Terranea Resort, conditions go to shit.

    It was a light diving crew today – Reverend Al, Eric, Chipper, Randy, Donna The Hot Biker Chick and me.

    We all agreed to go off the Point.

    Initially, there was some annoying surf pounding against the rocks, but we waited and it calmed down.

    We all made easy entrances; I sat on a boulder with my fins on and rode a receding swell out.

    We swam under a kelp bed and positioned ourselves over Ted’s Pinnacle.

    Reverend Al was determined to take us to the statue.

    We descended.

    Logged SCUBA Dive #471

    Dove with Reverend Al, Eric, Randy, Chipper and Donna The Hot Biker Chick

    The Point off Terranea Resort

    In With: 3000 psi
    Out With: 400 psi
    Max depth: 62 feet
    Waves: Pretty flat
    Visibility: 3 to 12 feet
    Water Temperature: 57 degrees
    Air Temperature: 81 degrees
    Total Bottom Time: 51 minutes

    We followed Reverend Al as he attempted to locate the statue.

    Vis sucked
    Visibility, well, sucked.

    He came across what looked like a fallen statue – he tried to prop it back up and then realized it was just a rock.

    Where did the statue go?

    We found it 10 feet away, where it has always been…

    The statue off the point

    Donna and the statue
    Donna and the statue.

    Lobster spotted!
    Lobster spotted!

    The floor

    A reef


    A crab molt?
    A crab molt?

    A Starfish.

    A bed of uni.
    A bed of uni.

    A Garibaldi
    A Garibaldi.

    What is left of a starfish
    What is left of a starfish – there is a flesh eating disease that is rotting away local starfish (Thank you for that information, Max Bottomtime).

    I surfaced when I had 500 psi left; I wasn’t too far from the cove and only had a 10 minute surface swim before reaching my exit point.

    Easy exit
    Reverend Al strolls out after Eric made it to shore.

    Chippers easy exit
    Chipper’s easy exit.

    The walk back
    The fun part – the walk back up.

    The group
    Today’s group – Reverend Al, Donna The Hot Biker Chick, Randy, Eric, Chipper and me.

    Donna models Heal The Bay IPA
    Donna models Heal The Bay IPA.

    Bumper party!
    Traditional debriefing ensued.

    A U.F.O. is spotted!

    A UFO above Terranea Resort
    It looked like a flying lawn chair!

    Was it a North Korean reconnaissance craft?

    It passed by before I could zoom in, so we may never know.

    When I got home, I heard a news story that one person was killed and 13 injured by a freak lightening strike near Venice Pier.

    Among the victims was a SCUBA diver (not in the picture).

    Lifeguards tend to lightening victim

    What amazed me more than the lightening strike was the fact that people actually dive Venice Beach.

    You can read about the lightening strike and watch the video here: One dead, 13 injured after lightning strikes at Southern California beach

    July 16, 2014

    Diving The Ruby E Wreck

    July 12, 2014

    Back on the boat from my first dive, I took off my BCD and sat down.

    I started to get a little sick – like dizzy – and it felt like my dry suit was constricting.

    Then I figured out, yes, my dry suit is constricting because the release valve is open and I was getting dizzy because the boat was tossing up and down in the swells.

    I unzipped my dry suit and stared at the horizon while repeating the mantra, “I am macho, to puke is to be non-macho.”

    I felt better after a while.

    Captain Jeff of the Pacific Swann provided chicken noodle soup and Mike C. provided smoked salmon to eat while we did our surface interval.

    The boat motored over and moored onto the marker for the Ruby E.

    After 45 minutes, divers were heading back into the water – Donna and I were the first two over.

    I felt cold water leaking into my dry suit.

    I gave my zipper a quick jerk to seal it and that stopped the leak.

    Captain Jeff on the Pacific Swann

    We swam to the bow line and descended.

    Logged SCUBA Dive #470

    Dove with Donna The Hot Biker Chick

    The Ruby E Wreck
    San Diego, CA USA

    In With: 3100 psi
    Out With: 600 psi
    Max depth: 83 feet
    Waves: Choppy on the surface
    Visibility: 10 to 15 feet
    Water Temperature: 54 degrees
    Air Temperature: 78 degrees
    Total Bottom Time: 32 minutes

    Donna going down
    Donna going down.

    Exploring the Ruby E

    I haven’t dove the Ruby E. for probably seven or eight years – a lot has changed.

    There are no solid walls above the deck and it looks like the hull has partially collapsed.

    Donna and I ventured inside…

    Inside the Ruby E

    Inside the Ruby E

    Fish  under the stern of the Ruby E.
    Fish under the stern of the Ruby E.

    Ruby plaque
    The Ruby E – 1934 – 1989

    Apparently, the Ruby E was originally a smuggler’s boat until being turned into a Coast Guard vessel.

    Ruby E wreck

    Off Gassing over the Ruby E
    Off Gassing over the Ruby E.

    In a way, I like diving this wreck better than the Yukon because it’s much smaller and less intimidating.

    Me and Donna
    Me and my diving buddy, Donna The Hot Biker Chick.

    The Pacific Swann is a comfortable six-pack diving boat run by Captain Jeff.

    Soup, snacks, water, weights and completely filled tanks were available for the excursion – he did the best to make our trip as enjoyable as possible, and he succeeded.

    However, unless you enjoy diesel exhaust, don’t sit at the rear of the boat while the engines are on – a feature that heavy smokers should appreciate.

    Apparently, Captain Jeff has a real job during the week and the Pacific Swann is his “weekend warrior” project.

    Bob and I went directly back home after the boat docked; his excellent driving ability to weave in and out of slow moving traffic got us back within two hours.

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