Early Spring Diving

Just two customers, Jim Castelli and Laurent Dubois, and a light northerly wind meant we could try Paddock Rock.  It's 42 degrees 33.626' North and 70 degrees 44.605' West – Number 73 in The Diver's Guide to Cape Ann.  The GPS worked perfectly and announced we were arriving at the target just as we could tell the bottom was rising from 80 feet to 24 by reading the new fathometer.  Pat Walsh and Peter used the mooring that was in place and made quick work of tying up.

Peter made a quick anchor check dive and returned with the first lobster "keeper" of the season.  I took the gray camera and housing for video.  Cal didn't hose his suit in, but I did.  Was I ever glad.  We got to 79 feet and the water was 47 degrees.  It was murky and yellowish in the first 10 feet but cleared up considerably after that.  Everyone descended into the cut on the southwest corner of the rock and landed on the sandy bottom with a thunk.  Our suits were compressing and it took shots of air into our suits or vests to keep us from being too heavy.

I shot footage of a sea cucumber with its gills out, a cod lying lengthwise in a crack, a scarlet psolus (Psolus fabricii), and a tiny decorator crab.

The second dive was back to the wreck of the USF New Hampshire (Number 71 in The Diver's Guide to Cape Ann) for Laurent.  He was hooked on wrecking and wanted to try for a spike.  No such luck.

Pete cooked vegetable chicken noodle soup and we scooted for home.

Great weekend.

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