Reverse Profile

That means diving the shallow site first and the deeper site second. We didn’t start out to do that this morning. Rather, we planned to pillage the site of the USF New Hampshire in one of the first boat dives to be there after the winter rearranged the bottom and its treasure.

The site of the USF NH is 25 feet deep at a real high tide like it was this morning. Joe Finkhouse, Laurent Dubois, Kevin and Linsley Mordasky and Juli were up for anything. That’s why we love having them come with us. Having divers with a positive, upbeat attitude about the scuba possibilities in early spring helps keep us going.

The water was greenish, even though there’s a posted red tide warning. From the bottom, looking up, I saw a murky, milky silty layer in about 5 feet. Didn’t look red, though. It was still 44 degrees on the bottom. I videoed critters having breakfast in the sandy dredged groove our anchor had made. Laurent took his new HD video camera and housing underwater together for the first time and practiced not moving the rig. It’s hard to do, trust me. Especially when there’s any kind of surge at all.

When everyone was back from the first dive, we started talking about where to go next. Since our movie this year is going to be about Paddock Rock, I looked straight south from the stern of Easy Diver and recommended we try it right then. It looked pretty calm out there and there was absolutely no passing boat traffic to rock and roll us as we suited up. We were already suited up and almost ready to go. Everyone was up for it.

We used our GPS unit to find the rock. It worked great and we anchored on the rock with our first pass. Pete jumped in to be sure we were where we thought we were. He also checked the anchor and found it to be hung up with one fluke in a notch on the ocean side of the rock. He cautioned us not to use the anchor line to pull ourselves down, but to just swim beside it to descend. Anyone pulling on the anchorline could disengage it from its crevasse and the crew remaining onboard would have to motor around waiting for everyone to surface.

OK. We’ve got it.

I descended beside the anchorline in what seemed to be a lot of current. I was chugging along and carrying my video camera as well. I hooked a left at the anchor and dropped into the notch in the rock that bottomed out at 85 feet. It was dark. It was black. Visibility was 10 feet or so. It was 44 degrees.

I videoed some dead man’s fingers, a sponge. There was also a scarlet psolus. The surface looked green and diffused from the sand. I didn’t find any of the other divers. Since I only had 1500 psi in the tank when I started, it was not long before I needed to return to where it was warm and there was plenty of air.

On the way back up, I missed the anchorline and assumed it had broken free. I decided to just surface and look for the boat there. As I rearranged myself on the surface, I saw three sturdy types in perfect unison, assuming the OK posture on the stern. I was OK, so I gave it back, but it was wonderfully reassuring to know that such concern was in place for my well-being. What sweethearts! They powered up to me and practically levitated me onboard.

Everyone else made it back just fine. No issues. No sweat. Next time, I’m taking more air on this dive.

One Response to “Reverse Profile”

  1. Kathy Says:

    Well this certainly has me itching…. even the 44 degree part!

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