2nd March 2013
by Richard Booth
The unusually poor weather since the start of the year has meant that opportunities to dive the East coast have been few and far between. In early March however, after a fortuitous break in the weather over the previous week, things were looking good for the club’s first excursion into the sea in 2013.
The opportunity to also dive from Derek Anderson’s ‘new’ dive boat, the MV Oceanic, also proved hard to resist.
In many ways it only seems like only a few months ago that the club was enjoying its first excursion aboard Derek’s original dive charter boat, the MV Scimitar. In reality however, that was way back in February 2009 (See article: http://www.tynesidebsac.co.uk/diving-from-mv-scimitar/).
First impressions of his new purchase appear to be very favourable. The Oceanic, a Southcat 38 catamaran, appears to be a much bigger and more powerful craft than the Scimitar. The large deck area with its centre seating arrangement easily accommodated 12 divers, even with plenty of twin sets and rebreathers being roped to the seats. The wheelhouse situated towards the front of the vessel reminds one of Dr Who’s TARDIS, seemingly small on the outside but surprisingly spacious once you enter it.
Once everyone was safely aboard, ropes were cast off and we headed out of Eyemouth harbour. Safely outside of the harbour Derek opened up the throttles and Oceanic powered its way up the coast soon arriving at our first planned dive site, anemone gully. Kitted up we plunged off the back and headed down through the green water towards the bottom some 20 metres below. Sadly despite the more recent settled weather the underwater visibility proved barely more than a metre. Nevertheless we pressed on and explored the gully system with our torches. With the water still so cold most of the soft corals were not at they’re finest, but we soon found some impressive dahlia anemones clinging to the rocky surfaces.
For a second dive we headed back to St Abbs and dropped in on the Black Carrs. Again, underwater visibility was not at its best but we still managed to get in an enjoyable dive exploring its myriad of gully’s and walls. Looking for the lairs of wolfish.
All in all, a good days diving was had by all.
For further details of Oceanic charters: www.aquamarine-charters.co.uk