Report and Photos
Diving with Ross O.
Dive Day with a Scooter
February 15, 2009
and Photos © Elaine Jobin,
may not be reproduced in part or whole without advanced written permission.
Yippee, another dive day. This one was really special. Ross and Claudette had three scooters on board, and, since there were only three people on board: there was a scooter for me!
Claudette gave me my "orientation to a scooter" briefing on the way to our first dive site, the wreck of the Loop. It didn't sound too hard, but because I'd never driven a scooter before, I have to admit I was a little scared and intimidated. In a nutshell, for the scooter uninitiated - you squeeze the trigger to go and quit squeezing to stop.
For my first scooter driving experience, I left the camera on the boat, so, there are no pictures. The scooter was neutrally buoyant so it is pretty easy to drag around underwater. I went down the anchor line under my own power, scooter in tow. We met at the bottom and I gave the scooter trigger its first squeeze. A slow and easy take off ensued. I only went about three feet for my first try, just to get a feel for it. Ross and Claudette began making their way around the wreck and I followed on my scooter. It took a few minutes to feel balanced, but by the end of the dive I was good enough to zip around a bit with them. I could start, stop, go straight, and do basic turns.
After a while I realized I was going to be the "sour puss dive spoiler". I was weighted for my big camera and the scooter was going to be a 2 to 3lb difference. About 25 minutes into the dive I started feeling "lighter" than usual. I checked my air and I still had plenty. Uh Oh. We were always near the boat but the visibility was pretty bad and using the anchor line to ascend might not be an option at the end of the dive. A vague sense of trouble down the road set in - "what if I was going to be too light to do a good controlled open water ascent"? I scribbled "I'm light" on Claudette's wet notes. We happened to be near a lobster trap and used its line for an ascent. Even so, I kept a good grip on Ross the whole way. Thanks you guys for making sure I got to the surface OK!
Next stop was at a rock pile. Ross and Claudette wanted to do some lobster hunting. I stayed on the boat, not wanting to screw this dive up for them too. They took off on their scooters for about a half an hour. When they returned - well Ross had this gigantic lobster.
We don't know exactly how much he weighed. This is how he compared in size to my biofin.
All went well until I tried to take my fin away from the lobster - he bit it and wouldn't let go! Finally, he spit it out, unharmed. The second picture is the lobsters mouth - I don't think I've ever really looked at a lobsters mouth before.
After a few photos, Ross released his gigantic lobster.
For our last dive we went back to the site near Pt. Vicente where we had found the cool old anchor last year. Ross and Claudette wanted to scooter hunt for lobsters, I wanted to get some photo time in. So ....I hitched a ride with Claudette I felt a little like a remora, but, it was fun covering a lot of ground and having the camera with me too.
This was Ross on his scooter.
This was Ross and Claudette lobster hunting.
On the way back to the boat, Ross and Claudette had fun scootering through some of the rock formations.
Then, we found the anchor!
This is Ross and Claudette with their "keeper" lobsters.
After our dives we stopped by to visit Jeff and Sue Shaw. Sue is in dry dock recovering from some hand surgery.
Get well soon Sue!