Star of Scotland, Labor Day

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Posted by jlyle on September 06, 2004 at 14:30:31:

Santa Ana and perfect conditions tempted us to motor up to Santa Monica and the wreck of the Star of Scotland. Labor Day was beautiful, warm, sunny, with no wind, flat seas and little swell. We arrived on site to find a RIB with six divers in drysuits already anchored on the wreck, near the bow. We talked to them briefly and anchored off the stern to give them as much room as possible. I dropped down and found really nice conditions, good visibility of 20+ feet, little current, and cool temps (in the high 50's). It had been a while since I last dove this wreck and I was struck by the number and size of the Peltodoris nobilis (formerly known as Anisodoris nobilis)nudibranchs. They were everywhere and huge; some as long as six-inches (no jokes, please). In addition to the Anisodorids, there were large numbers of Triopha catalinae, a few Flabellina iodinea, Doriopsilla albopunctata, and others. Corynactus anemones cover most exposed surfaces in all colors of the rainbow. Roger reported seeing a school of yellowtail, I had my head in a hole looking at a nudi. There were a bunch of scorpionfish and cabezon resting on the wreckage, and some nice size sheelphead. I didn't see any lobsters, but I wasn't looking for them.

We took full advantage of the great conditions and did another dive after a suitable SI. We first hit the wreck on the port side where the davits still stand on the side of the hull. We swam towards the bow, following the hull to the point where it has collapsed. It's just a short hop over the debris field to the bow which is really tall and covered with life.

Roger had an encounter with two black seabass. If we had brought another tank, we would have done a third dive, it was that wonderful.

Moral of the story? Santa Ana?...go diving!


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