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9/14/2003 Eric's Pinnacle Damnit! aboard Cypress Sea by Nick Radov -- [View this report only]
Bottom Team: Gary Banta, Nick Radov
Visibility: 10' - 15' Time:2:45 PM
Temp:   Surge: 1'
Max Depth: 64FSW Avg Depth:  
Bottom Time:   Total Time: 0:58
Bottom Gases: 30/30Deco Gases:
Backgas Config: Single,Double LP95,HP100Deco Tanks:
Deco Profile:
 
I hadn't dived in a single tank for more than four months so it felt a little weird not having the ton-oh-fours strapped to my back. :-) We dropped down along the east face of the pinnacle, then jumped over the small sand channel to check out the smaller rocks. Gary pointed out a clown nudibranch (Triopha catalinae); I hadn't seen one of those in quite a while. We then turned and made a 3/4 circle around the base of the main pinnacle. Caught a large decorator crab in the act of devouring a still living jellyfish. For the second half of the dive we moved over to the other large pinnacle that sits next to Eric's and did a couple circuits of that. It has a nice thick crop of corynactis. That smaller pinnacle tops out at about 43ft so we made our ascent along the kelp that grows from the summit.
9/5/2003 Monastery North by Pete Gelbman -- [View this report only]
Bottom Team: Jason Nemecek, Pete Gelbman
Visibility: 30' - 60' Time:7:59 PM
Temp: 54F Surge:  
Max Depth: 107FSW Avg Depth: 50FSW
Bottom Time: 0:50 Total Time: 1:47
Bottom Gases: EAN32Deco Gases:
Backgas Config: Double LP80Deco Tanks:
Deco Profile:
Long slow multi-level swim back to shore
 
This is probably the best dive I've done in Monterey, definitely the best shore dive ever for me. Ocean flat, sky clear, bright moon, awesome vis. 0 surge, 0 current.

We did the typical N. Monastary routine; drop at edge of kelp parallel with the wash rock, swim out the ravine edge around 100' for while then head back, play around the shallow kelp for a long time. Except this was night. With spectacular vis.
And lots of fish. With sea lions, MAN were there sea lions.

We knew it was going to be a good dive when we could barely find the wash-rock because the water was so calm we couldn't see any water breaking over it. Also we could see the bottom from the near the wash rock. As soon as we drop down, sea lions are buzzing us. Man, they love the HID lights. 3 of them stayed with us the whole dive never more than 20' from us. 100+ minutes underwater fun with our own personal sea lion escort. A fat white one, a sleek brown one and a medium gray one. What a show! We'd highlight fish for them with our lights and they gobbled them in front of our eyes. They'd streak by us, bumping and rolling us over squinting thier eyes if we shone our lights too close to their faces. We even got to observe them working in teams - one would chase a fish into a rock formation while the other one would wait on the other side and gobble it up. By the end of the dive they were so full they weren't eating any more, just nosing the fish around like a cat bored with a mouse.

At one point we were hovering under a deep ledge checking out some small life when stuff started raining down on us; cucumbers, starfish, a crab sprialing down right past Jason's mask. We look up and the sea lions are going crazy on a school of rock fish on a vertical wall above our heads - they are zipping around so hard they were knocking stuff off onto us. We were both laughing so hard the whole dive - my stomach hurt when we got out.
Plenty of jellies in the water too, moons & and a few eggyokes.

AWESOME! Conditions are STUNNING!
9/1/2003 Local's Ledge aboard Cypress Sea by Pete Gelbman -- [View this report only]
Bottom Team: Clinton Bauder, Nick Radov, Pete Gelbman
Visibility: 25' - 60' Time:12:18 PM
Temp: 52F Surge:  
Max Depth: 98FSW Avg Depth: 80FSW
Bottom Time: 0:38 Total Time: 1:00
Bottom Gases: 21/35Deco Gases:EAN50
Backgas Config: Double LP104Deco Tanks:AL40
Deco Profile:
3
1
1
1
2
8
6

 
Dive #2: Local's Ledge, Cypress Point? Vis still nice, but quite as nice as before. A ton of Hycro-coral everywhere, Clinton's camera's HID light sure do a nice job lighting stuff up! Made it back to roughly where we thought the anchor line was but could't find it, later we found out that our bag hit the surface about 20' from the boat...

Actually most interesting event of the day was the spotting of a very large shark on the surface in between dives. Marcos Guimaraes gave a good account about it on ba_diving. Couple of dolphins followed us back into the harbour. Large animal surface fun has been a big highlight lately!

Some SDUE folks were visiting with Joe this weekend, they seemed to enjoy themselves. A good day on the water was had by all.
9/1/2003 Flintstones aboard Cypress Sea by Pete Gelbman -- [View this report only]
Bottom Team: Clinton Bauder, Nick Radov, Pete Gelbman
Visibility: 25' - 80' Time:10:00 AM
Temp: 50F Surge:  
Max Depth: 160FSW Avg Depth: 130FSW
Bottom Time: 0:25 Total Time: 1:00
Bottom Gases: 21/35Deco Gases:EAN50
Backgas Config: Double LP104Deco Tanks:AL40
Deco Profile:
deep stops
5
3
2
2
3
8
8
 
Dive #1: Flintstones. First time deep here for Nick and Pete, very cool site. Primary mission was to find the 2nd missing O2 bottle, that failed so we moved on to plan B which was to fart around and have fun. One of those days where the water is flat, the boat trail is clear, the water is blue and you know it's going to be a good day diving before you even get in. Nothing really special on the dive, just lots of the normal colors and topography - absolutely awesome vis made it really lovely. Some seals dive-bombed us down deep a few times then played with us a bit on deco. Moderate current kept us a bit busy around the line on deco.
8/28/2003 Butterfly House by Pete Gelbman -- [View this report only]
Bottom Team: Jason Nemecek, Pete Gelbman
Visibility: 20' - 40' Time:6:31 PM
Temp: 50F Surge: 10'
Max Depth: 56FSW Avg Depth: 42FSW
Bottom Time: 1:16 Total Time: 1:20
Bottom Gases: EAN32Deco Gases:
Backgas Config: Double LP80Deco Tanks:
Deco Profile:
 
After I managed to drag Jason out of work and hauling butt down to Monterey we were rejected by Lobos rangers for being 2 minutes late (!?). Monastary was pounding. Decided to take a look at Butterfly house, found it pretty smooth and at low tide, so decided to give it a try. Tons of kelp on the little beach and in the water made it kind of messy to get out, but once we got down it was fun, although a fairly surgy. Good vis and nice long swim through heavy kelp forsest straight out west from the shore in search of deep ravines to escape the surge but never really got to any depth. I think the nice vertical relief must be a little further out and south of the main washrock there. Dusk lighting makes swimming through the kelp forest/canopy very fun. Some interesting rock formations and some decent Cabezons, rock fish and crabs. A seal stalked us for a while - due to dusk lighting all I could see was his dim outline and green dots for eyes which was pretty eery and cool. Jason did a good job navigating and got us right back to where we dropped down, so we had an easy surface swim back in. We were glad it wasn't too dark though - kelp and surge was a little heavy by the end of the dive - navigating through the shallow rocks would have been more of a pain in total dark. Good stuff.

PS. Checking out Mars from a dark spot on 156 on the drive home was an extra icing on the cake.
7/20/2003 Aumentos aboard Escapade by Nick Radov -- [View this report only]
Bottom Team: Gary Banta, Pete Gelbman, Nick Radov
Visibility: 30' Time:5:00 PM
Temp: 52F Surge: 1'
Max Depth: 52FSW Avg Depth:  
Bottom Time:   Total Time: 0:47
Bottom Gases: EAN32,30/30Deco Gases:
Backgas Config: Double LP80,LP104Deco Tanks:
Deco Profile:
 
And yet more drills. Gas sharing at 20ft. This time we each took a turn leading the team from 20ft down to 50ft, then back up again. We're finally starting to get the hang of sticking in formation and communicating effectively but still need more practice. Damn I'm tired...
7/20/2003 Ballbuster aboard Escapade by Nick Radov -- [View this report only]
Bottom Team: Gary Banta, Pete Gelbman, Nick Radov
Visibility: 25' - 35' Time:3:10 PM
Temp:   Surge:  
Max Depth: 111FSW Avg Depth:  
Bottom Time:   Total Time: 0:37
Bottom Gases: EAN32,30/30Deco Gases:EAN50
Backgas Config: Double LP80,LP104Deco Tanks:AL40
Deco Profile:
 
Another round of gas sharing drills at 20ft, then down the anchor line with Gary leading. The anchor had dragged quite a ways off shore of the main pinnacle and was sitting in the sand amongst some smaller rocks. After checking out a few metridiums on the bottom we made a staged ascent back up the line. There was a noticeable surface current running.
7/20/2003 Dali's Wall aboard Escapade by Nick Radov -- [View this report only]
Bottom Team: Gary Banta, Pete Gelbman, Nick Radov
Visibility: 30' Time:11:15 AM
Temp: 52F Surge:  
Max Depth: 74FSW Avg Depth:  
Bottom Time:   Total Time: 0:33
Bottom Gases: EAN32,30/30Deco Gases:EAN50
Backgas Config: Double LP80,LP104Deco Tanks:AL40
Deco Profile:
 
More skills practice. This time we did a gas switch on the ascent. Saw a couple of humpback whales on the surface while heading back to the harbor.
7/20/2003 Butterfly Outer aboard Escapade by Nick Radov -- [View this report only]
Bottom Team: Gary Banta, Pete Gelbman, Nick Radov
Visibility: 35' Time:9:30 AM
Temp: 52F - 54F Surge: 1'
Max Depth: 63FSW Avg Depth:  
Bottom Time:   Total Time: 0:37
Bottom Gases: EAN32,30/30Deco Gases:
Backgas Config: Double LP80,LP104Deco Tanks:AL40
Deco Profile:
 
Skills practice for Tech 1. Gas sharing and valve drills at 20ft, down to the anchor in slow 10ft increments, then back up the same way.
7/19/2003 E3 aboard Escapade by Clinton Bauder -- [View this report only]
Bottom Team: Clinton Bauder, John Heimann
Visibility: 20' - 40' Time:3:30 PM
Temp: 50F - 55F Surge:  
Max Depth: 187FSW Avg Depth: 160FSW
Bottom Time: 0:25 Total Time: 1:20
Bottom Gases: 18/45Deco Gases:EAN50,O2
Backgas Config: Double LP104,HP120Deco Tanks:AL40,AL80
Deco Profile:
Deep Stops, 6,3,3,4,4,12,6 off, 6, 6 up.
 
John and I were on the Escapade for an afternoon deep dive. The forecast called for strong NW winds and there were only two of us so we figured it would be a Mile Buoy kind of day. Instead the winds laid down and the seas were quite calm. We decided to go take a look at Point Pinos. Before we knew it Jim was heading south. We protested a bit but when the Captain is insisting on taking you to E3 how can you really complain? Thanks Jim!



We arrived at E3 straight away (damn this boat is fast) and set a downline. John and I jumped in and swam over to the buoy. There was a bit of current so we held onto the line while doing our pre-dive drills and review. During this time John felt the weight pop off the pinnacle but we figured it hadn't gone too far so we headed down. Vis was good but not great being very blue but just a bit milky.



The ball turned out to be in the sand. At first I was distressed by this but the looming darkness in front of me quickly reassured me that the pinnacle was nearby. Even better the ball was sitting right next to a lonly stage bottle sitting on the bottom! This had been reported lost on ba_diving a few weeks ago. We sent it up on a liftbag. If this was your bottle contact Phil Sammet as we gave it to him on our way back to the dock. Done with our good deed we swam over to the pinnacle which turned out to be deep E3.



We swam around the base of the pinnacle for while admiring the plentiful Starry, Rosy and Vermillion rockfish along with the gorgonians and sponges. After 15 minutes or so we moved up a bit where the corynactis was more dense and the sponge formations even more spectacular. We finished off the dive at the top of the ridge which was shallower than I thought for Deep E3 (about 110-120 feet). I had thought it was deeper but I haven't been here before. Beto?



Deco was straightford and in fact rather fun as jellies of all descriptions were massed around us once we got to 70 feet. Overall a great day on the water. Thanks again Jim!

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