So, Dave Edwards decided we needed a trip to get the new year going, so, he sent out the message we were going to Anglesey, camping, and diving 5th and 6th June. Think the trip was full within 20 minutes, and more than full by that evening. Unfortunately, Dave forgot to check he could book the days off so whilst we spent Saturday in the water, he spent it delivering to Holyhead and the surrounding areas!
Also, unfortunately, most of the camp sites were nearly full. Some of us got into Tyn Rhos and Stu Matthews saved the day with a bit of wild camping behind the site club for the rest. Mr Barlow, now being social class above the rest of us common campers found a site for his caravan as far away from us as possible whist still being on the island. But I suppose he couldn’t hear the snoring from there….
Anyway, back to diving, Saturday morning it was 8 o’clock on the front at Trearddur Bay to launch the two boats. Fortunately, the Hoff was there to organise the groups and get the boats in the water before the warden appeared to charge us for launching. With there being too many for the boats it was split into waves with some staying on the beach and going second.
After a tip from Chester SAC that they had been surveying the Missouri, had set a shot on the boiler, had laid a line across the whole length and that the vis was great…. that was where we headed. There were a nervous few minutes while we got the boats going but we needn’t of worried, the sorry excuse for an equipment officer had finally got the Viking fixed! Started first time.
It wasn’t the greatest of days to be in a rib, there was as fair breeze, and it was choppy but fortunately its only ten minutes round to the site and we all more or less went in together. Wow, the vis was stunning. You could almost see the whole wreck form the surface. We swam round the boilers and followed the guide rope to the bow and round then back. We have dived there a couple of times before but not seen anything more than a few bits of steel, but this was amazing. You could really see it had been a ship! Could have stayed down there all day but we had to get back for the other wave.
Once we got back and swapped the kit round I went back out to help the second wave dive and the others got some lunch. The second wave also came up with big grins…. and comments like, it’s the best vis in fifteen years and I didn’t realise there was so much to the wreck.
So, after a quick lunch wave one set off again but this time to Rhoscolyn Beacons for an afternoon dip. Again, it was very choppy and after ten minutes of spine massage we got into their shelter. We again more or less went in together and spent a great half hour poking round the reefs and gullies. The vis wasn’t quite as good as the morning but still excellent. Plenty for sea life to observe and try to film with my new and very cheap underwater camera. Should have saved the effort and the money as the cheap bit of Chinese junk leaked in 10m despite being rated to 30. You really get what you pay for!
Back on the beach, the second wave had called it a day and gone so while the others got one of the boats out, myself and John took Steve Mc back to the Missouri for a second dive. The sea was really lumpy now and after he went in it was a long half hour bobbing round and trying to keep the boat into the waves, but good practice towards the cox assessment. Anyway, well worth it to see the smile of Steve’s face when he came up!
Returning to shore it was the usual rush to get the other boat out and get the cylinders off to get fills. Big thanks to Dave B and Stu for taking the cylinders and to Anglesey Divers for staying open late to fill them all!
After a long day, everyone went their own ways, Dave and Kelly back to Beaumaris, me and Kate to Enoch’s Chip Shop in Valley for Calamari and chips whilst the others went to the pub. No surprises there! After a beer back at camp with Ian and the Hoff we turned in to wait for stories the next day. After all….‘Big’ Dave had finally arrived for his trip.
Day two, the weather was amazing, the wind had gone and the sun was out. After sausage batches from the camp stove it was back to the front at Trearddur Bay for nearly 8 o’clock. We weren’t disappointed with the stories either! Someone carried on drinking back at someone else’s caravan and couldn’t find their way out of the caravan park….. ended up finding their way back and had to sleep in the spare room! No names but everyone knows who they are………
The waves swapped round for day two, so after the boats were launched, off they went whilst we enjoyed the sun on the beach. When the first boat came back we headed off to the point by Lee Caravan Park to dive on the wreck of the Hermione. We have dived here before and seen nothing but again today the vis was fantastic. Could see most of the wreck and swam in and out of the rocks to see what was left of the prow and lots of sea life. Its not a big wreck so after a couple of circuits we swam offshore a bit in the gullies until we ran into Dave and Kelly coming the other way. Literally. So, we came up together then once we were all aboard, headed back.
After a coffee, a sandwich and a bit of a wait the boats were back but there was only four of us to go back out. Fortunately, Steve very kindly agreed to go straight back out so we headed back to the Missouri. After all, it’s close and the vis was too good to miss.
Another great dive. This time, following Steve’s advice, we swam a circuit around the outside of the wreck. The vis was so good you couldn’t miss the boilers from anywhere and we got to see lots we had missed the day before……. including a monster spider crab that could also see us!
We got back onboard, headed back and landed the boat. By the time we had packed the car everyone was on their way home. We headed back to the campsite, washed what we could then set off to Beaumaris to get some tea with the posh people. No chippie tonight, its was calamari and chips in the Midland Tapas and Wine Bar with Dave and Kelly. Very nice, but a strange place and odd service. After a rush back across the island to make the 11pm gate curfew at camp Tyn Rhos it was the end of another day.
Won’t bore you with the packing the tent up the next day, driving back then washing all the kit at home and drying the tent before putting it away. (Yes Mr Edwards, you dry tents before you put them away…….)
Anyways, what a great weekend and some fantastic diving. Big thanks to Dave for starting it all off, a bigger one to the Hoff for organising the diving and also a huge thanks to Steve Mc who must have coxed every wave he didn’t dive.
Roll on the next adventure.
Thanks to Kelly and Lou for some of the pictures…….