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5/31/2004 Deep E3 aboard Escapade by Pete Gelbman -- [View this report only]
Bottom Team: David Chamberlin, Pete Gelbman
Visibility: 15' - 60' Time:11:36 AM
Temp: 46F Surge:  
Max Depth: 182FSW Avg Depth: 160FSW
Bottom Time: 0:25 Total Time: 1:12
Bottom Gases: 18/45Deco Gases:EAN50
Backgas Config: Double LP104Deco Tanks:AL40
Deco Profile:
deep stops
5
3
3
3
3
10
5
 
With sketchy reports, things didn't look too good for heading south, but
Jim was willing to take a look. With nothing but masochist deepsters on
board, upon reaching Point Pinos despite the 10+ ft swells and strong
east wind, his word was "Well I'm going south until you guys tell me to
stop!". At E3 he proclaimed it safe enough conditions to dive if we
could stomach the topside conditions. By that time most of us were
already gearing up, so it was a moot point ;-) With the rough surface,
Jim ran a live boat for us and dropped a shot line on what we thought
was E3. Water clarity wasn't too bad and the green layer thats been
present lately wasn't around. Vis was a bit chunky till about 30-40'
depth, then opened up to at least 50' horizontal. Upon descent, the
highest point of the reef was around 145' and it didn't look anything
like the E3 that I had seen my first time here last summer - later we
found out from Beto & the maps that this was deep E3. With a fairly
strong southern current running, I wanted to duck down into a canyon -
we had a choice of east or west side of the main reef structure, and we
chose the west side. There is so much to see here its really something.
Everywhere you look are steep walls and canyons filled solid with life.
On the north side of the shallowest reef, we met up with Beto, Susan &
John who were following a deeper profile on the the east side. Dave
found a small wolf eel, other than that the usual suspects. Most of the
time I was taking in the big picture, so probably missed tons of cool
small stuff. 1/2 hour drift-ride
under a bag was nice and relaxing - all in all a beautiful dive.

Courtesy of Beto, here
is a map that shows the routes we took.

Many thanks Jim and crew for taking such good care of us on a rough day!