Posted by Timotheus on June 07, 2001 at 16:48:37:
In Reply to: Golden Days of Cailifornia Diving posted by Jon Davies on June 05, 2001 at 22:22:10:
I was certified NAUI in 1971. My most memorable "early days" dive was at Flat Rock Point in March of 1972. My buddy Ted and I had to scrape frost off the windshield, but we loaded up the car and headed south to P.V. with the heater cranked up. We only had 3/16 suits and steel 72's. It was in the 40's, the waves were very small, and you could easily see features on the bottom way out to the middle of Bluff cove, so we hiked down the short trail to the point and suited up. The vis must have been at least 50 feet. I don't remember seeing any spectacular creatures, just loads of the usual Senioritas, Opaleye, Kelp Bass, and Garabaldi but I just remember how astounding the vis was. We made it out to the rock in the middle of the cove and actually got out for several minutes to try to warm up. It seemed to work, and we headed back in, taking our time and admiring the great scenary.
I remember seeing a 3' Black Sea Bass at Lunada Bay in the winter of 1973. That was the only one I've ever seen. I used to find green abs in Bluff Cove and took maybe 5 of them - one was 7 1/2". I found a 7" Red at White Point. I feel guilty that I was one of the people who caused the current problem.
I started snorkeling in 1968. My first snorleling dive was at Laguna (Heisler Park) and I don't recall seeing any kelp at all. It was just bare rocks on the bottom. Back then, there were still black abs in the tide pools there. I remember freaking out when I saw a moray swimming below me in about 15 feet of water. A friend and I returned to the same place in 1972 and I barely recognized it - the kelp had totally taken over. I guess that means there were cycles to the kelp back then too. I know 1969 was a very wet year (anybody remember all the mud slides?) so there was probably an El Nino in effect in '68 and '69.
When I was a real little squirt, I remember going to P.V. with my parents and looking over the cliffs at Lunada Bay at the recently wrecked Dominator. I remember that you could see the brown kelp choking the surface of almost the entire bay. As I recall, the locals were pretty upset with all the flatlanders coming up to see the wreck and parking on their streets.
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