Monday, October 20, 2008

Back in the swim of it

It's been a couple weeks since I have been diving.
We were supposed to go Saturday morning, but I woke up very early with a monster headache.
Some ibuprofen and more sleep took care of it, but I was still feeling a little heavy-headed.
With the pressure of the water that comes with diving, I didn't feel comfortable going out that soon after such a bad headache.

So we skipped it and decided that if things looked good Sunday, we would go out in the afternoon instead of the morning.
When we got there, we saw a couple large sailing ships cruising up and down the coast.
Turns out they were replica schooners giving sails and tours. Every once in a while they fired off their cannons.

The water looked pretty choppy. There were no big waves, but there was a lot of chop which made me think there might be too much surge and too much sand being churned up at the bottom.

But we asked another diver who was just getting his gear stowed after a dive.
He said conditions were excellent with great visibility. He also said they saw squid eggs down at about 70-75 feet. Good enough. Time to dive.

Veteran's Park, Redondo Beach, Calif.
Oct. 19, 2008
Logged dive: No. 16
In with: 2400 psi
Out with: 500 psi
Max depth: 73 feet
Bottomtime: 35 minutes

Here is Manfriend. Behind him is Redondo Beach, looking south down the coast.

This is me, with Redondo Beach pier behind me, to the north.

There was a little surge, creating ripples in the sand where we dropped down into about 15 feet of water. They look like tiny sand dunes.

Manfriend gives me the OK sign, which I return to indicate I am good, ears cleared, ready to go.

Sand dollar. We saw what looked like a sand dollar farm. There were dozens of them all standing up in the sand like this. I wonder if it was because the surge tipped them up or if this was some sort of sand dollar spawning thing.

The almost invisible, sun-shaped thing to the bottom of the photo is an anemone.

These are a type of worm. They are all over down in the sand.

Sea snails, um, getting to know one another.

Yeah. It was really odd to see this. They were going at it.

Here is a pipe fish. At first it just looked like a piece of kelp. Excellent camouflage until it started to swim.

Jillifish. Which apparently is a nickname another diver, Reverend Al, came up with for me.
I kind of like it.

The underside of a starfish.

There was, of course, some trash. If I had a free hand and the bottle was not broken on the other side, I might have brought this back to throw it away. I am thinking maybe we need to bring a small mesh bag for trash when we go out at Redondo. There is always something.

There is a giant starfish down there, just as the shelf starts to drop off. It is almost like a landmark.

I put my hand in the frame to give some perspective on how big this thing is.

Then we found the collection of cinder blocks and other assorted items that people leave at a place referred to as the monument. There are some old scuba tanks, a traffic sign sort of thing and this clock.

There was an old camera, a trophy and this rhinestone-studded frame.

Looks like the little trophy dude has been down here for a while.

I like the frame thing. I used the macro setting on the camera. I like how this turned out. There is pretty good detail.

The cinder blocks serve as home to several creatures. They are especially comfortable for octopus it looks like. I saw at least six of them, or at least little tentacles and eyeballs peeking out.

Here is a detail shot of a tentacle. The octopus are fascinating and creepy at the same time.

At this point, I was down to 800 psi in the tank, so we turned and headed back toward shore.

Next time I may use the bigger tank. It is heavier, but it holds more air. So I can take off some of the other weight and dive for a longer time.


Samantha said...

Great photos, Jill!! Was this with your new camera? If so, you figured it out .. the clarity was great!

ReesePie said...

I think you're getting GREAT pics with that camera! I particularly like the one of the seaweed-clad diver figurine.

Ray said...

See you are having fun with the new camera!!! Love the Schooner shot!

I just got back from a week in Vegas for the DEMA conference...came home with a personal O2 analyzer for my Nitrox tanks and I bought an OTS Gaurdian full face mask with the wireless communication system ("Buddy Phone").