Dive Until It Hurts (1/14/12)

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Posted by Max Bottomtime on January 17, 2012 at 14:05:03:

I had four days off at New Years. It was foggy all weekend. The next weekend brought us the first high surf of the year. This past week I have been battling a sinus infection. I was diving today, no matter what! Our first stop was the wreck of the Palawan. This is not one of my favorite wrecks, but it had been a long time since I dived it so I thought my perception of it was tainted. It was still boring. Corynactis anemones blanket the outer hull, but the top of the wreck is mostly covered by silt. If someone added some metridiums and a wolfeel or two it would be an exciting dive. Visibility was eight feet and it was very dark. My head was pounding throughout the dive, but I was able to clear all the way down. We checked out the bow, saw four or five fish and tried to get photos. At one point I went to the sand to get a shot of the bow from below, but it was so dark that my camera wouldn't focus.We made a short dive of it, then made a slow ascent. During our safety stop two sea lions, looking lethargic slowly floated our way. One liked to float inverted, and eventually came within inches of our faces. Merry got a couple photos between screams. I got out of my gear, blew my nose and headed for the Topaz Jetty. I hoped to lay line between the three pilings I saw last time and maybe find more. The surface visibility was much nicer near shore, but vis on the sand was only about ten feet. I tied off my line to the southernmost piling in forty-four feet and headed inshore. I made it to the end of my line at the same time as I reached the next piling. I'll have to wait for a better day to complete the mission. For now, if you swim out to thirty-six feet and head north from the middle of the condos on the north side of the Topaz jetty you will see an orange line about four feet off the sand. There are pilings at either end, one at thirty-five feet and one at forty-four. Now, if you will excuse me, I need to blow my nose and take some meds. I'm diving again tomorrow.

Bow of the Palawan

Merry finds something interesting

Tiny Squarespot rockfish hide among the corynactis

Outer hull and ribs

Vermilion rockfish

Piling at forty-four feet

Shallow piling

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