Both Kevin and Edwin went on a dive trip to Anacapa. They didn't dive together, but they made the same dives and then both wrote a nice report about the diving. Both reports were good, but together I think they give a unique view. This is also a good report about the great diving at Anacapa Island.
Prepared and gathered all my gear Friday night, in anticipation of the dive aboard the
Covenant on Saturday. Set the alarm clock to 5:30 AM, and went to bed.
Got up at 5:00 AM (beat the alarm clock), loaded the gear and had a quick breakfast while
waiting for my friend Andre to show up.
To make a long story short, at about 7:30 am we were aboard the Covenant, and had met capitan Bob, Kevin (dive master), and the rest of the friendly folks. There were seven aboard, including the Capitan. As we headed out to Anacapa, the tune from the 'Gilligan's Island' kept playing over and over in my head... Had adrenaline pumping through my vanes, in the anticipation of an adventurous day. The water was calm, and the food was great. Muffins, bagels, Lox, ... The crossing only took about 25 minutes, to the 1st dive site.
1st dive: Everyone was pretty much geared up and ready when we got to the site of the
wreck. Dolphins were playing around the boat, while we were getting ready to start our dive.
Capitan Bob did an excellent job on putting us VERY near it. Kevin, being the dive master,
jumped in and marked the wreck using a reel/line.
We jumped in, swam to the anchor line, and started descending. at about 100 or 110 feet, we hit a thermocline... could definitely feel the cold on my ears and face (no hood). The Navy plane (see Kevin's post), sitting at approximately 130 feet was preserved extremely well. In the blue-gray gloom, and at 130 ft, the wreck sat with amazing tranquility, appeared to be frozen in time...
We proceeded to observe the general area, when I noticed Kevin struggling with something nearly half his own size. Look over to my right, and WOW! he has got a hold of a MONSTER Sheep head.
We slowly ascended, making a safety stop at about 15 feet.
2nd dive: The wreck of Winfield Scott. A short ride over from the 1st dive site. Upon
making the entry, I initially thought that the Capitan had made a mistake, and had taken us to
a top-secret military airfield. Then I quickly realized that the 'stealth' looking fighters were
nothing more than a squadron of bat rays.
Some already in flight, and some on the ground ready for take-off. I believe someone counted 19 of them at one point. My buddy and I, proceeded to dive, where we came across the paddle wheels of this sunken wreck.
Very cool. The shallow depth of the wreck (25 feet) allowed for plenty of natural lighting, and good photo subject material. As we were headed toward the boat, I noticed a very vague outline in the sand... What was later to be identified as an angel shark, about 3 feet long, was laying (and buried) in the sand.
After the 2nd dive, we had a great and healthy lunch. Green pea/cashew salad, potato-lobster salad, and gourmet, deli style sandwiches, which provided MUCH needed nourishment. By this time, the swell had picked up quite a bit (12:45 PM), so we headed to the back side of the island.
3rd dive: A nice, looong shallow dive. Main attractions: An underwater arch, seals, and some
kelp and the creatures that go with it. I decided to have a scallop underwater, and upon
cutting the scallop open, the whole site surrounding us looked like a 'piranha' horror movie....
Sheep head and Garibaldi frenzy. We did manage to keep most of the edible scallop for
At one point during this dive, the reality set in.... In a few minutes, this will all be over, and all that will be left are the vibrant memories of this day (and about 7 scallops).
On the ride back from Anacapa, we had some 'adult malt beverages' and wine, along with chips/salsa. It was true. A great day of diving had come to an end.
All in all, the whole experience was a GEM (GREAT dive crew, EXCELLENT food, and MAGNIFICENT diving). Thanks Kevin, Bob, (and everyone else).
We headed out on a sixpack to Anacapa for a long day of wreck diving and hunting. It was a beautiful flat day, the water was that turqoise blue that makes you wonder if it could get any more spectacular.
Our first wreck was a Grumman Avenger Torpedo Bomber that went down completely intact. She sits on the bottom about 130. We explored the plane from one end to the other. The site is littered with GIANT scallops, dinner plate sized. Delicious underwater, and delicious on the BBQ. I fired the big gun once and bagged a 25 pound sheepshead, another treat from Neptune's realm.
Our second dive we dove the wreck of the Winfield Scott, a very historic old steamer that went down in 1853 with lots of gold aboard. The captain kind of looked at me strange when he saw I was diving a 20 feet deep wreck with dual 95's, but then understood the strategy when I came back to the boat one hour and thirty minutes later. I was able to explore every aspect of that wreck. There is still gold on that wreck, I saw it myself.
As the afternoon swell grew, we jumped on the other side and hunted and explored the arch. Once again I limited out on scallops, and bagged a bug. Seals played with us and marine life was vibrant and
The food was first rate, bagels and lox for breakfast, basil, goat cheese, chicken and tomato sandwiches and salads for lunch. Beer and wine on the ride home.
It was one of the best days I have had diving in a few months. And between the fish and scallops and lobster and urchins, we feasted Sat night and all day Sunday.
Next weekend its a local wreck with Captain Ray on the Mr. C, man are we gonna have fun.
The diving is spectacular, and if you need a jump start to get in the water, contact me.
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