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Old 04-12-2010, 02:23 PM   #1
Name: Kathy
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Default 11/11/2010 Pt Lobos by Kathy Dicker

11/11/2010 Pt Lobos by Kathy Dicker -- [View in Reports Page]

Bottom Team:Kathy Dicker, Erik Sandvik
Visibility:3' - 15'Time:12:00 AM
Max Depth:71FSWAvg Depth: 
Bottom Time:2:06Total Time: 
Bottom Gases:EAN32Deco Gases:
Backgas Config:Double Deco Tanks:
Deco Profile:

Erik and I took a chance on Sunday and against the odds, wagered a bet on conditions at Lobos. Wind from the South, swell from the West, low tide and swell model increases towards then late afternoon, a calm report from Sat evening at BW. Perhaps the stars would align---and despite the ominous weather forecast we’d get lucky with a morning dive that would make the 4hr RT drive count.

Placid water at Monastery (and divers gearing up)feeds our mounting excitement. Under gray skies and slight sprinkle, we pull into the Whalers Cove parking lot. Hiking up to the bluff, we brace ourselves against invigorating cold gusts of wind and the sting of little droplets of pelting rain on our faces. From the bluff we notice white caps breaking quite a ways off shore. But--the surface of the cove and beyond is lake still and teaming with marine life. Exciting!
We barely notice the occasional gust of wind that sneaks over the bluff smacking cold rain drops into our kitting up efforts. The feeling that we’ve successfully cheated the odds and have Lobos entirely to ourselves (except one other team) spurs us on!
Kicking out through the calm water is exceptional. Sea lions, otters and seals are everywhere, playfully following us and not retreating. At one point we pause about 10’ from a gray whiskered otter casually floating on its back. We swim a little closer; he keeps cleaning his whiskers with his little paws and doesn’t even seem to notice our presence.
We surface kick out a ways, drop down just past worm patch into 10’ grainy dark vis, then casually kick through the canyons out to Hole in the Wall. The vis opens up to about a grainy 10-15’ but it's still quite dark. We head out towards Lone Metridiun. Then the darkness and vis closes in. Just before we round the corner to pay respect to the solo Metridium we are greeted by this dark green-brown abyss; a grainy 3-5’ vis. Looking around at the little boulders and clumps of vegetation in the water, at this point I start getting that eerie cemetery feeling and decide it’s time to turn back.
Enjoying peaceful calm waters we do a slow kick back down the sand channel to shallower clearer water, pausing for a while on middle reef to enjoy crabs and nudis. At some point a few fish fly by with a harbor seal in hot pursuit of a sashimi lunch.
126 minutes after we descend, we surface to a very cute family of 4 otters floating on their back in the kelp and a curious harbor seal or two or three and many playful sea lions.
Gusts of wind have increased and the surface has a curious texture but still zero swell. We step out of the water just in time for an exciting parking lot hail storm. Round white hailstones bounce off our hoods and equipment like little ping pong balls. A few brave tourists hike through the lot, but we are the only two divers. The rain/hail does a pretty good job of rinsing our gear while we eat lunch. By the time the weather abates the lot is empty--we have Lobos entirely to ourselves ;-). We finish the rinse job, pack our soggy gear and head home with big smiles -- knowing we have cheated the odds ;-).
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