20th Feb 2009
The original plan for Saturday had been to conduct some dive leader training at St Abbs and given that our RHIBS were in for engine repairs and service this left three options for diving: none (or a muddy puddle somewhere inland), shore diving or last minute hardboat.
Up until relatively recently there was a one or two day boats operating out of St Abbs and Eyemouth. To day there are a range to choose from which increases the chances of finding a suitable last minute place to get a half decent dive in and with the amount of competition, at a reasonable price too.
On Sunday morning, a quick call to Iain Easington revealed that there were spaces onboard the Northstar to dive the East Neuk (24m) and something else. We’d missed our chance of diving the Dove in 41m.
The only problem I have with a shuttle services is usually the lack of attention paid by the rest of the divers to other strangers onboard the boat. With Jim as the attentive skipper and a bunch of laid back divers from Halifax BSAC and other BSAC trained divers from the NE region this wasn’t a worry. Everyone seemed aware of who was up and who was still under.
We met the board at 11.30 at Eyemouth and duly loaded out kit in the places vacated by a group of divers just up for the morning dive, before heading out and going for a dive on the East Neuk .
The wreck is quite difficult to identify on an echosounder as it lies in some reefs and is very smallbut Jim expertly placed the shotline between the propeller and the engine block
The visibility wasn’t too bad although it was quite dark. We did the usual tour of the site looking for any changes from last year. There used to be a porthole glass wedged in the rocks but we couldn’t find it this time. After a good half and hour of trying to take some decent photographs (and generally failing) we ascended up the shot line to complete our stops in water which was a balmy 5 degrees (which was warmer than the ice dive we did previously.)
For our second dive we had the boat to ourselves and Jim suggested a nearby site called Leger Boss inbetween Eyemouth and St Abbs.
It’s a group of rock pinnacles rising up from the sandy seabed at around 11 to 14m to within a few metres of the surface. This was a nice easy dive which offered some good opportunities for photography, which would have been great if our camera had behaved! Still with batteries running low we managed to get a photograph of a large nudibranch which had fastened itself to a rock.