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    September 29, 2014

    Third Dive Of Opening Night (Morning)

    September 27, 2014

    The bugs were deep and all of us were super saturated with Nitrogen.

    We had to try deeper places, so the Captain pulled anchor to find a similar spot.

    After a 20 minute boat ride and a surface interval of over an hour, we anchored in a not so secret spot – there were several dive boats already in the area.

    “It’s 3:30 AM, hasn’t this spot been picked clean already?,” I thought.

    Eric made a mad dash to be the first one off the boat.

    I soon followed and noticed a fairly strong current.

    I submerged down the anchor line and swam against the current.

    Logged SCUBA Dive #476

    Solo Diving

    Secret Location: 41 20 52 65 65 66 20 63 6c 6f 73 65 20 74 6f 20 61 20 50 6f 69 6e 74 20 74 68 61 74 20 69 73 20 4c 6f 6e 67 2e – Catalina Island

    In With: 3000 psi
    Out With: 800 psi
    Max depth: 65 feet
    Waves: Pretty flat once we were there
    Visibility: 10 to 15 feet
    Water Temperature: 67 degrees
    Air Temperature: 66 degrees
    Total Bottom Time: 35 minutes

    I hit a reef with an abundance of fish and other sea life.

    I spotted a short lobster with half its legs gone, limping on the sand.

    Yeah, this place has already been raided and I bet the lobsters are spooked.

    I saw a bunch of bugs in the cracks of the reef – too far in to grab.

    I know they were too far in, because I tried; I even looked for a back entrance.

    This was a nice dive, with lots of structure and sea life, however we got there too late.

    The fact that I always saw at least one other diver’s light double confirmed my thought.

    I began to accept the fact that I would not be limiting on this dive.

    I toured around the reef, and when I lost hope for another bug, I slowly swam to the surface.

    I hit the surface literally 15 feet away from the boat.

    Eric caught two on this dive.
    Eric amazingly caught two on this dive – he didn’t have to go home skunked.

    My entire catch for the trip.
    My entire catch for the trip.

    Debriefing on the way back.
    We debriefed after the dives, but I soon found myself sleeping in the galley on the way back.

    We made it home just as the Sun was coming up.
    We made it home just as the Sun was coming up.

    This trip was not as plentiful as last Opening Night; some experienced divers got skunked or only one or two.

    Tim was the only one who limited and won the jackpot for the biggest dive (pictured last post).

    I ended up with four lobsters and felt bad that I didn’t have a couple to spread the wealth around.

    All in all, another Opening Night with cool people on a cool boat.

    September 28, 2014

    Second Dive Of Opening Night (Morning)

    September 27, 2014

    All who had lobsters from the last dive, and even some who didn’t, went deep – we needed to off gas for at least an hour before the next dive.

    The boat pulled anchor from our previous spot and we slowly made our way to our next spot.

    A gourmet dinner on the Asante.
    We dined on pasta with meat and potato chips.

    It was a short 25 minute ride, most divers took their time to get back in the water.

    After a 70 minute surface interval and a nice dinner, I dawned my gear and jumped overboard for my second dive.

    I again, was the first one over board, I think.

    Logged SCUBA Dive #475

    Solo Diving

    Secret Location: 41 20 63 6f 76 65 20 6f 6e 20 74 68 65 20 45 61 73 74 20 73 69 64 65 20 6e 61 6d 65 64 20 6f 72 20 63 61 6c 6c 65 64 20 54 6f 79 6f 6e 2e – Catalina Island

    In With: 2500 psi
    Out With: 300 psi
    Max depth: 110 feet
    Waves: Pretty flat once we were there
    Visibility: 10 to 15 feet
    Water Temperature: 68 degrees with a thermocline at 80 feet
    Air Temperature: 69 degrees
    Total Bottom Time: 23 minutes

    I had to go deep – there’s no lobsters shallower that 70 feet.

    The boat anchored in 60 feet, so I didn’t have a long way to go.

    There was a cliff – well, sort of a cliff, with patches of gigantic kelp.

    That’s where I was going to look for the six bugs that I needed to catch to make my limit.

    I have a pretty good eye now for lobster size; if I came across a lobster too short to catch, I would shine my light on it, but not make any threatening moves.

    I figure that way, they will grow up “not fearing the light.”

    At 90 feet, I caught my first bug of the dive – it looked dead, not moving, until I pinned it.

    I think it was eating, but it freaked out after my hand grabbed it.

    I pinned it and stuffed it into my bag.

    Five more to go before I limit!

    I came across a massive bug, wrestled it, it surrendered, and swam into my game bag.

    I was getting massively low on air – I was at 800 psi and was at 90 feet.

    Sure enough, as soon as I started heading back, I spotted another bug.

    BAM! I pinned it, and then it flew out from under my palm and into the reef and bounced back.

    I dropped my light and caught it with two hands and stuffed it into my bag – that has never happened to me before!

    Again, I had to surface with no safety stop – I don’t like doing that, but I didn’t go into deco.

    My three bugs from this  dive.
    My three bugs from this dive.

    Me and my bugs.
    Me and my bugs.

    The bug count increased – I had a total of four, Chipper at this point had six, Tim I believe had limited, Al and a couple more divers had at least one.

    Tinm's huge bug.
    Tim caught the bug that was now the final contender to win the jackpot.

    We needed to stay deep – all the bugs were caught in 80 to 110 feet.

    We discussed our next, and final dive… STAY TUNED!

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