The Lochs, 28th August 2011

"I don't do shore diving"

Another horrendous forecast had the East coast in heavy rain and strong winds so we thought we would try and sneak a dive in in the Lochs. Driving across the weather did little to impress us but apart from a few spots we remained rain and wind free all day.

Sea loch anenomies
The first site was the outer reef at Furnace quarry or what has become known as ‘Dogfish reef’, no dogfish today but sea loch anenomies getting ready to spawn.

The dive descended down the sunken concrete pontoon to the base of the boulders, out across the mud for a while then back to the base of the slope which we traversed until bottom time was exhausted and a diagonal rising line taken to reach the outer mark where we turned and made our way back to the entry point.

Limacia clavigera

As we completed a safety stop came across this little chap, a bright orange spotted nudibranch.

Back at the car we lit a small disposable barbecue and burnt sausages while we chatted the surface interval away. A pair from West Lothian SAC who were going in, asked us if we would be shore cover, which we duly did, hanging around munching hotdogs until they surfaced 2 minutes before their planned time.

It wasn’t one of those glorious afternoons we have got used to this year (ha ha!) and we had chilled down , so to get the ball rolling again I suggested a change of venue and we moved to Loch Long to have a look at ‘The Caves’.

The culvert entrance is a little daunting if you haven’t done it before but if you take your time it’s easy enough especially if a rope has been left in situ.

Entering into green oily water we rapidly dropped down the steep mud slope beyond the 30m mark where the visibility improved but the light had all but gone. A good torch was needed to pick out a field of Firework anenomies. All too quickly the bottom time was spent again and we moved diagonally up the slope to find the boulders and walls of Peacock worms that amused Bethan as they snapped shut as she waved her hand over them. About here my torch, the half sun one, went out, luckily just the battery running down but an interesting experience. My buddy, attentive as ever, thrust her spare into my hand before I could reach for mine. Excellent torch too.

Reaching the end of our outbound air we turned and ascended to the top of the boulders where giant plumose anenomies provided colour as we bimbled back to the entry point.

A couple of really good dives today and to celebrate we ended up in the Drovers Inn to introduce Bethan to the bear before travelling back to Perth.