More Snow?

I got up exceptionally early for today, as well, the olympic gold medal game was on, and what kind of Canadian would I be if I didn’t watch us win? And after the very early game, I went back to bed for a quick nap before heading back down to Nanaimo.

After yesterdays excursion in the snow and cold water, what could today bring? In Parksville at least, it had a little bit of snow on the car (more like slush) as I brushed it off in the morning. Still opting to leave nice and early to Nanaimo. And I’m glad I did, as once we hit the highway, the snow was piled high!

Luckily it was still snow, and not ice. In Nanaimo it was very deep and made a few intersections interesting getting down to the docks. Once down in the parking lot, Drew and I both looked at the big hill back up to the road, and our little cars …..

While we were loading up the boat, the captain and DM were busy shovelling the snow off the decks and canopies, trying to keep ahead of the falling snow, while we waited from the group coming across on the ferry from Vancouver.

We decided we needed a photo of this glorious excursion, in the falling snow, to go diving in ‘warm’ waters!

This time we were going to go and stick to the Saskatchewan again, as it’s slightly shallower than the Cape Breton for the sake of doing some more line work (and to have enough NDL time for me being on air). But as we got there, there already was another boat with divers in on the wreck, and the other moorings were not usable, so we went to the Cape Breton.

Going over our dive plan, David and I were to go down to the wheel house, and I would follow Davids line as he ran it through the wheel house to the other side, and back again. Drew was going to Video, and Liz was going to observe. Our times and pressures were calculated and we started kitting up.

As I jumped into the water, my SMB decided to deploy, so I wrapped that back up, and stored it back away on my rear D-Ring, and headed towards the down line at the bow.

I look back, and its deployed again! Hmmmmmm. I wrap it back up and decided to stow it as we get out of the chop of the waves at around 15 feet. It was very choppy at the surface, and going down the line, I wasn’t feeling too well. My long hose also felt shorter, twisting my neck to the side, SMB is in my hand (and unravelled for the third time ….) and I’m burning through my gas supply. I wasn’t feeling good about the dive.

I stopped for a few seconds around 10ft to see if I could get a few things sorted, but I called the dive.

Getting back around to the stern, the Vancouver group were just splashing in, moving towards the bow. Well all except for one of their group, who was hanging overboard looking pretty green.

25 minutes later, my group came back up, and shortly after that the Vancouver group came up from the Breton.

We contemplated where to go next, as the Vancouver group were doing a Deep Dive course, and wanted to do Snake Wall, but with the waves this day, we went back to the very sheltered RivTow in the harbour.

Getting back into the harbour, I was feeling not well, laid down on the deck until we got into calm water. Not to waste a full day of diving, We kitted up again and did an nice dive on the Riv Tow with all of us going down the line at once, Drew and David running line through the wreck, Liz observing, and myself on the Video camera.

While kitting up, the buckle holding my canister onto my belt came undone, just out of reaching distance it hit the deck, and bounced around to the only hole in the deck, and down it goes into the murkyness. Not off the edge of the boat inches away from me, but back onto the deck down that stupid hole. grrrrrr.

Down off the line, David and Drew did their line work, headed back to the bow and up the line, while Liz and I stayed back and checked out more of the ship for a while longer.

My homemade goodman handle works very well, just a few tweaks needed to get it really set up for my hand. I was asked about making a version for some SOLA lights, as they don’t have a hard handle.

After paying up for the boat, we headed down the harbour to one of the newly reopened pubs for the big debrief (and some food and beer). We watched some of the video, told some tales, and parted ways for the weekend.

Back at grannies, Anne and Brian were over for dinner, and I made it just in time for dessert
Nanaimo BC, RivTow Lion
Date: February 23, 2014
Bottom Time: 31 minutes
Max Depth: 18m
Water Temp: 7C
Vis: 6m
Notes: Davids Wreck course, ran video
Running Time: 45:58

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