River Garry from Dunbar, 25th September 2011

I wasn’t sure about the weather and it was only the local observations from Loch Linnhe Marina that persuaded me that a trip West was out of the question and Paul’s idea of the East coast was viable.

Launching from Dunbar was very straight forward more tricky was finding a parking space but we were soon heading south and looking for the transects that located the River Garry site, a steamer that sank in the late 1800’s and lying somewhat flattened in 26m.

With great skill and not a little luck we dropped the shot on the engine block and soon Paul and Bethan were slipping down the rope under orders that they were to ascend in 10minutes if we were off the mark. 45 minutes later they surfaced on the shot with big smiles and assurances that we had located the wreck and that a good dive awaited us.

Buoy on the wreck with transects:

The second wave went in and found after initially poor vis that it improved and we were able to have a good rummage around the plates, swimming to the far end of the keel plate it seemed sensible to avoid further exploration away from the wreck as we may not have re-found it. As it was we didn’t find the shot when we retraced our way back along the wreckage and ended up on a free ascent, gently burning off a couple of minutes deco and surfacing under the watchful gaze of the boat crew. Makes you understand why DSMBs are obligatory bits of kit.

Steve drove us back to Dunbar harbor for lunch where certain nameless persons availed themselves to cheese burgers while hungry dieters watched on in sullen silence.

Second dive was Siccar rock where pathfinders Paul and Bethan once again descended the shot line while the remaining team provided boat cover with Fred at the helm. 45 minutes later they ascended reporting another good dive. Unfortunately the sea state had picked up and an irate North sea chop with largish waves made for sport in the boat. It was an easy decision to curtail the days diving and the drive back was very entertaining with Dunbar facials by the bucketful. Eventually we sought shelter nearer the harbor entrance where the second wave went in on the lee of The Yettes, a rock just outside the bar. This too was a fair dive with numerous small lobsters and flatfish hiding under boulders and on the sand.

We just managed to get past the bar of Cromwell’s Harbor and retrieve the boat before low water would have left us high and dry, a state that prevailed until we arrived back at Perth, unpacked the kit and washed the boat.

All in all a very challenging day.

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