I was fortunate enough to be in Simonstown for a work function, and managed to get a dive in while i was there. Mike and I met up at Long Beach just after 7 PM, and experienced a comedy of errors while kitting up. The one cylinder didn’t quite fit with my regulator, so we swapped cylinders. Then Mike couldn’t get his BCD strap to clamp down on the other cylinder, while i lost the O ring of my cylinder, but we were keen to dive so we pushed through.
The dive was absolutely worth the effort! We had 20 degree water, with 10 meters of visibility, and a bottom time of 57 minutes. We saw loads of baby fish, two octopi, a bright red cuttlefish and it looked like all the hermit crabs were looking for new homes. But the highlight of the evening was definitely the giant ray. With a wingspan of approximately 2m, and a height of maybe a half meter, it was phenomenal stumbling upon this giant. It was more awesome when we saw it move off, which is when we noticed the smaller one tagging along. Unfortunately it kicked up a storm of sand when it swam away, so we couldn’t follow (and hence the unclear pics), but it was an absolutely spectacular site!
Anand, Jordi, Mark, Stephan and I met up with about 12 False Bay Underwater Club divers to do a night dive at Long Beach on Monday night. The air temperature was a balmy 19 degrees and the water a refreshing 14. We entered just after the sun went down and did a nice swim around. The vis was about 5m but there was lots of particles floating about with all the divers in the water. Mark led us around with an entire disco light system flashing on his back – which was brilliant for the night dive. There was unfortunately not all that much to see, so we called it at 33 minutes. It was cool to watch the little sea creatures try to crawl back into the darkness when you shine your light on them.
So on Saturday morning I went for a gyrocopter flight from the Fisantekraal airfield just outside of Durbanville. The pilot, Louis, showed me just how manoeuvrable this little airplane is by doing steep ascents and descents, sharp turns and pivot rotations – which was a BRILLIANT flight. We hit a maximum altitude of 2000 feet above sea level and skimmed a mere 50 feet above the ground as well. Making a remarkable 30 minute flight. Louis handed the controls to me briefly, allowing me to experience this amazing craft first hand.
Later on, Jolene, Naomi, Justin, Carel, Stephan, Martin and I met up in Simonstown for a dive. We wanted to dive Windmill Beach but the water wasn’t looking too good there, so we headed back to Long Beach for a night dive, and what an AWESOME dive it turned out to be. An amazing 73 minutes in the 15 degree water (the coldest at one point being 12 degrees) with loads to see! We got to see 3 octopi on the dive, cuttlefish, shysharks and lots of other fish. It was an absolutely fantastic dive.
I caught the train to Pisces Divers and decided I was not going to dive because all along the coast there were big waves. But after fish & chips and a lot of friends arriving, I decided I must join them. Never dived at this site (Jetty in Simons Town, near Bertha’s), but it did not disappoint. Loads of Beaked Sandfish, a Sponge Crab or two, a Pleated Toadfish and a lot of baby Shy Sharks. Congratulations to Graham on his first night dive.