Trip report 3.25.06, San Pedro Bay, “Risus Sardonicus”

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Posted by Andy S on March 28, 2006 at 08:35:45:

Friday night we were discussing if it is even going to be worth going Saturday. Pat and Sheller had to be back early and with the vis we saw last week up toward Paradise Cove, the question is “will it be worth it.” We decide to go and just meter a bunch of new sites if the vis is bad as we expect. Saturday 6:30 am, we trailer the boat to San Pedro and as we get close, the ceiling gets lower and lower. By the time we clear Angel’s Gate, the fog is such that we can see 100 yards at most and we are carefully watching the radar. We decide to dive toward the west end of the “Horseshoe” as that puts us a far as possible outside of the path of the frequent and large commercial traffic coming into LA Harbor. The day will start with be one diver at a time and follow the bubbles in the fog.

The good news was ater looked remarkably clear as opposed the reports of dirty looking water we’d been hearing. Pat took the first dive @105’ and came up grinning; we wondered, was it risus sardonicus or he had taken another step toward total enlightenment. He reported that vis was 40 feet: that’s right 40 feet on the bottom – cold (50F) but clear. The spot was quite large and had 12 feet of relief with some nice mollusks around including Pecten diagensis. There were of clusters of squid eggs not only in the sand but right up into the rock. Soon after I made my first jump there, the fog lifted so we moved further east. We saw the Sun Diver come up and anchor on the Olympic – they should have had a great dive. In the end we made three dives on various spots and the vis was very good. Saw moderate size lingcod and one real big “fella”, cabazon, calico (some of whom ‘volunteered’ to come home for dinner), and scattered Haliotis assimilis as well. The cowries were out in force and I found one with an unusual set of red “racing” dots on the back. These spots are in the shell (under the inductra specifically according to “Sheller”) and represent some old injury/growth that has been covered over - I thought they were interesting. Also found one with an unusual coloration along the sides. Pictures below. They have joined their mates in my aquarium. On the way home, we stopped at 22nd St. Landing to say ‘Hi” to Jimmy Ingram who was busy fixing up the Westerly including installing a new foredeck, picked up the usual great carnitas taco’s at Spiro’s (on Pacific around 4th St. in San Pedro) and headed home up the freeway after another great day of diving in S. Cal.

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