Smokey Haze

We could smell it by 9 AM.  Smoke from wildfires in Canada.  The horizon disappeared and the breakwater’s fog horn started sounding.  It was eerie.

We had planned to go to Cathedral Rocks, but decided to stay closer to home, just in case.  I wasn’t sure how bad the visibility was going to get.  The breeze was light and shifty, but we decided on Stone Garage for the first dive at least.

I anchored in about 25 feet, and could see the bottom.  The site features huge grooves and long runs between boulders.

We had LD, Jacki K. and Andy J. plus Kat Apse with Pat and Pete as crew.  The Captain made the music selections.  We also had the chance to hug former crew member, Kathy Richard Neenan, and her new husband, Joe, before we left the dock.

The dive site was great – clear water that was 57 degrees on the bottom.  We estimated that the visibility was about 25 feet.  The long kelp that grows on the pink rocks at this site hadn’t gotten very big yet.  There was a lumpfish with eggs that bit someone’s index finger when approached.  Jacki and Andy found an ocean pout.  I scared several flounder as I settled down for each video shot.

Our second site is just down the rocks to the next landmark – The Silo.  The tall structure on the bluff might be someone’s astronomy platform.  It’s been shingled recently and its roof looks new.  Just off the property, there are lots of smooth rocks that have been shaped by running water.  I think of the lip of a glacier that drops water onto a rock and wears it away in a siphon shape.  They didn’t have any growth on them and looked amazing that way.

Pete, Kat, and Laurent were chasing prey and caught some.  I was videoing and swimming along when I realized my hands were hot.  This is definitely not a feeling I usually have on a May 31st  dive.  When I returned to the boat and took off my mitts, I was able to hold The Captain’s hand to show him how warm the water was.  We decided it was Global Warming and we’re kinda glad for it.  Or else, it could be the warm breeze from the south-east that was pushing the incoming tide from a warmer direction.

We motored back into the harbor and even made a bridge opening from Hammond Castle.  Matt and the bridge tender held it for us.  Then we saw Phil and Lynn on her mom’s apartment balcony.  There was lots of banging on their ceremonial gong in everyone’s honor.  They live on the barge at the Cape Ann Marina just over the stern of our boat.  They are good people.

So, we ended the long weekend with a warm, wonderful, fun day.  It’s only gonna get better.

Let’s go.

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