Farne Islands Pan Pan!

JJ Hartlepool towing us to port

Finally, the weather looked wonderful, we had four divers, three of them diver coxes and the club rhib. Dave turned up with the bat on the slip at 0900 as arranged, we packed the kit in the boat, moved the cars and launched the rhib. All looked so good….. picked up Dave from the steps, then motored out of the harbour, making the usual call to the coast guard on the way out. Then…. Put put! Put! Dead. The engine died on us. So we changed the fuel can, pumped the “grenade” which just didn’t feel right, and tried again. It started, yay, then put put, put. Stop. So we moored up to a buoy and put out a radio call to see if anyone could help tow us back to port, about 300m away (we couldn’t row the boat, as the tide was a little bit lively!

Tiago on the Bush wall

Eventually a nice fishing boat came and picked up our line and towed us back in. Really nice group of chaps – I didn’t catch their names, but very thankful to them 😊 On returning to harbour, we tied up the boat and prepared to dekit. The call went out – boat is fixed, Dave had found the issue, it was the hand fuel pump “hand grenade” the non-return valve had broken and detached. Dave fixed this and we got back in to our dry suits, had a very amusing call with the coast guard, saying we were going back out and off we went.

Only one dive, but on a wall I have not dived before, it was called the Bush Wall. It is part of a reef that runs south east from Little Scarcar and is a continuation of the Inner Farne Island chain. It sits on a sandy seabed, and the wall goes from about 8 to 20 metres or so. Dave put in a shot and dropped in me and Tiago for a dive. We descended to find a lovely wall, covered with life, especially sea lemons a type of nudibranch.

We swam along the wall, in a south east direction, just enjoying the strong sunlight coming down from the surface, and the visibility which was about 20 metres or so. Quite a few wrasse swam past as well as some shoaling silver fish (saith?). As we approached 40  minutes, we turned back and ascended along the reef to the top along through the kelp. Every piece of rock was covered with life, this really is a nice site.

Dave pretending to be a seagull

Dave and David then went in for their dive, a bit shorter than anticipated, due to a couple of minor kit issues, but they too enjoyed the dive. Just so nice when the visibility and light are so good. While we waited to surface, we were able to sunbathe! 

Seawitch our club rhib
Seawitch coming to pick us up

All on board again, we motored back to port. Glad we had one dive on such a lovely day, and that the rhib is working again. Just a shame it is nearly at the season’s end. But let’s hope that we can get the rhib out more in 2024! 

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