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Dive Report: Mendocino County Abalone Dive


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Posted by Chris on May 26, 2009 at 11:20:24:

On Saturday May 16, 2009 my friend Brian Hillyer and myself went red abalone (Haliotis rufescens) diving in Mendocino County. Low tide that day was 11:05 AM so we headed for the water just after 10AM.



The air was a brisk 51°F but the bright sun made it seem much warmer. The water was a crystal clear blue. As I walked to the water's edge I could see the many small sculpins in the shallows scamper for cover.



Many of the rocks had Shark Chow sunning themselves.


Harbor Seals (Phoca vitulina)
Harbor Seals (Phoca vitulina)


Harbor Seals (Phoca vitulina)
Harbor Seals (Phoca vitulina)

As Brian and I first waded and swam out the bottom was crystal clear.


Brian Hiller heading for the water
Brian Hiller heading for the water


Chris Grossman wading out
Chris Grossman wading out

As we began to explore we could clearly see the abalone from the surface. I saw large one and dove down and grabbed it, it was about 9¼ inches.


Chris Grossman and Brian Hillyer
Chris Grossman and Brian Hillyer

Once we each got our three abs we came back out of the water and immediately tagged the abs while we sat on a log on the beach.


Brian Hillyer returns to shore
Brian Hillyer returns to shore


Brian sizing up Chris' big ab as he readies to tag it.
Brian sizing up Chris' big ab as he readies to tag it.


Chris Grossman checks his abalone with a 9 inch gauge.
Chris Grossman checks his abalone with a 9 inch gauge.


Brian Hillyer shows off his two largest abs.  Chirs' tagged abs are in the foreground
Brian Hillyer shows off his two largest abs. Chirs' tagged abs are in the foreground

It was a great day of ab diving, and Kathryn, Brian, and myself enjoyed an abalone feast for dinner that evening.

You can see the entire set of pictures here.

Text ©2009 Chris Grossman
Photographs ©2009 Kathryn Cody




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