26 November 2007

Dipping a Toe in Tenerife

Just got back from a weeks holiday in Tenerife which was a family holiday but I still managed to squeeze a days diving in. The only problem was on the day I booked up for the diving the weather decided to blow a hooly so my planned trip to the appropriately named Le Meridian wreck was scrapped and I had to make do with the twin wreck site just outside the port of Puerto Colon.

The wrecks are 2 purposely sunk wrecks sitting side by side in 23m. The wrecks themselves are pretty boring but make ideal training sites and provide a home for shoals of grunt and few trumpet fish plus the odd angel shark. My total dive time was 40 minutes water was 23.c and vis around 15m. The dive centre have also sunk a statue of an old lady close to the wreck side as an added attraction.

With the wind still howling the second dive was along the coast in a quiet sheltered cove which looked pretty uninspiring and is mainly used for training and try dives. On entering the water the vis had dropped to a grainy 3-5m and I wasn't hoping for much but guess what? 10 minutes after the dive began and I just as I was starting to get bored I felt something brush my leg, and to my surprise I had a new dive buddy, a large green turtle who was very friendly and joined us for about 5 minutes 10 minutes later a smaller green turtle wanted in on the action and hung around for a while.

Apart from the turtle family there were a few inquisitive cuttle fish who filled up the remaining dive time.

I was diving as a guest of Diversity http://www.diver-sity.com/ based in Puerto Colon a well set up PADI 5 star centre situated right on the quay side, diving from their own 8m rib.

The 2 dives cost me a total of £32 pounds including full kit hire air and 2 boat dives, which I didn't think was too bad.

The dive centre also operate their own apartments so I could see an opportunity for a cheap group trip out there sometime in the future.

Tenerife isn't every ones cup of tea but it seems the local government are doing and have down a lot to change its image and clean up the Island from its boozy Brits abroad image.

Obviously the diving here is not the Red Sea but there should be enough variety to keep a group satisfied and keep the non divers and families happy.

Guess what the weather was perfect for the rest of the week but I had other commitments


17 November 2007

Not So Stoney Cove

I was planning and hoping to write up a great report on the Stoney trip and some superb video footage, but alas it was not to be, but if you want a report on congestion, accidents, pillocks and the cosmopolitan republic of Luton you got it.

As you can gather we didn't get there but not for lack of trying. Having left in the early hours your intrepid duo battled Britain's finest motorways and failed dismally, we got as far as Luton and gave up. Having worked out that travelling 2 miles an hour we would reach the Cove sometime next week.

After discovering the eastern delights of Luton or was it Karachi, via a detour, we headed back south and straight in to another hold up this time at the M11 junction on the M25.

I got to stretch my legs walking up and down the central reservation whilst Mr Pascoe discovered the delights of playing his Cliff Richard collection as loud as possible.

After another detour, due to a driver discovering that his car would not drive on its side, we headed around the North Circular where we ended up in Thurrock, at the Lakeside Diving Centre. We were welcomed with open arms at Lakeside, but your intrepid duo could not face kitting up in the biting wind and rain even though my new camera was screaming out try me try me. Too long sitting in the warm car had seriously dented our enthusiasm

Lakeside definitely looks promising for another day soon with depths ranging from 4-15m and a large selection of Pike Perch Roach and the other usual man made attractions such as sunken taxis boats buses etc. With a well stocked Dive shop and air,nitrox and trimix on tap this is one for the future.

We eventually got back to my house about 4pm and watched a diving film instead of making one. My mind was definitely thinking "what if"

Such is Life

10 November 2007

Meridian Divers in Official Guide to Seaford Town!

You can never be too sure where those Meridian Divers will next turn-up! One of our photos from the Gozo Dive Trip (see Blog posting of 30th September in our archives) now graces the pages of the Official Guide to Seaford Town web site. We are only too happy to support diving in the area and the Sink-One-For-Seaford project.

Check-out our Meridian Divers Gozo Dive Team on:-

04 November 2007

Brussels NEMO 33 Trip ~ February 2008

NEMO 33 ~ The Deep End!

I have circulated an email with a draft outline of the proposed Brussels week-end trip in February 2008. A number of you have already indicated that you want to take part in this cultural visit .... with an optional deep dive thrown in!

NEMO 33 describes itself as the worlds DEEPEST pool. And as it's name suggest its 33 metres to the deepest point. You do NOT have to dive to this depth and there are several linked areas that have much shallower bottoms! Two Meridian Divers visited NEMO 33 earlier this year and are very much interested in going back. The abundance of good restaurants and Begium Beer are a factor that comes into the plan for a return visit, but they will only be enjoyed by divers AFTER the dive!

If you are interested in this trip just let me know (if you add an anonymous comment to this posting it will not (being anonymous) show on the blog , but it will automatically be forwarded to me by email. Simple!

03 November 2007

Diving in the Bahamas

"Annoying the locals!"

Hello all, well Im back after several weeks in the Bahamas, I will get round to popping a full report and some more pictures up here, but I just had to share this one with you.

This picture is for Deborah Mackenzie (Sharp) to say a big thank you...xx

Why is it that it all happens at once ! While I was away I got a call from BDMLR to check on a seal in the local area but was not able to assist I happened to be on a dive boat in the middle of a tropical paradise at the time, Well that was until the tropical storm "Noel" came in and cut it short for diving but I still had a amazing time....so now after all the the ice cream I need to get in UK waters to get the extra pounds off!!!

Here is a little something that I hope amuses you as it did me taking the photo....I think the name of it say's it all.....

Bahamas Star Diver!

02 November 2007

Sink One For Seaford ~ Public Meeting (11)

Meridian Divers 'Staff' at the Sink One For Seaford Public Meeting.

The Sink One For Seaford public meeting at Seaford on 2nd November attracted a high number of guests and the presentations from the 'top table' were professional and interesting. After the presentations there was time for questions from the public. There was a balance of those keenly supporting the project and those less convinced that it was exactly what they wanted . Overall there was support for moving towards the next stage, a scoping document. The project now needs to raise the money (total £3-£4k) for the document. Meridian Divers were well represented and were the dive group chosen to assist with the running of the event. Other diving industry people were amongst the audience , including Graham Owen the PADI Regional Manager (who we had the opportunity of chatting with at the last PADI Members Forum).
I was , however, quite surprised that none of the local dive / dive boat businesses raised any questions or voiced public support for the project. Involved ,as we were with running the event, it didn't seem appropriate for Meridian Divers to play the role both of 'staff' and 'guest'. One ex-commercial diver in the audience asked why another wreck was needed when there was no shortage of wrecks in the areas. A fair point ...but... a deliberately sunk wreck would create a huge publicity opportunity for the area and potentially drive regeneration. Of course Seaford is a small town with limited resources whereas the wreck of HMS SCYLLA is near the strategic naval port and city of Plymouth.
Overall a very positive event.

01 November 2007

Government Petition ~ SCUBA Valves

Details of a SCUBA Valve petion that is now on the 10 Downing Street website for your information:-

"The proposed EU changes to SCUBA cylinder valves will require a different sized valve for nitrox and trimix gas mixtures (see BS EN 144-3:2003) There are no problems with the current A-clamp and DIN (M25) thread size and it has not been the cause of any incidents. The proposed EU changes will lead to confusion and increased risk and it is a wholly unnecessary cost that divers and commerce can do without. The HSE voted against the EU proposal and Britian should support them and common sense."