Friday, October 1, 2010

Jed's visit

My friend Jed, with whom I first began sailing, came down to visit me. He was on his way out to Texas to visit family, and happened to be stopping along the way for a wedding in Pasadena, so I took him out for a few days to Catalina. The weather was oppressively hot the first day, and apparently record breakingly so in LA, and we came across the channel with a wonderful little breeze. The water was really murky out at the island, so when we went diving, we didn't see much. We met a guy who had a trimaran, and he took us out sailing on his boat, which reminded me of the times at UW when Jed and I would sail Hobie cats together. One of the things we would do was tow a surfer behind the catamaran (since they can go fast enough) and so we did just that.
We also dove at "bird rock" which is a completely white rock, covered in bird droppings. While we were out there, the trimaran's anchor was caught on the bottom, so I decided to go down and free it. So I prep myself by calming down as much as I can, and holding on to the anchor line so I don't have to swim to hold myself up. Then I dove down and took a pull on the line. Soon I was accelerating downward, as my ears are clearing again and again, my lungs are getting smaller (which feels like you are exhaling). Soon, I am going really fast straight down. I was going about 3 knots, so the water was rushing past my arms and legs and onward I go, down into the murk.
I had previously dove to 53 ft, according to the dive watch that the trimaran's owner had lent me to see how deep it was, but when I got to about 35 ft down, I couldn't see the bottom yet, and I got a bit spooked. So I turned around and came up. Twice more, I got down closer, but still couldn't get to the bottom, though I could faintly see the anchor chain and the rocks it was tangled in, in the distance. Then the fourth time I was determined to make it, and as I dove down, Jed let loose the anchor line, so the chain pulled me down faster than before. I got down to right above the anchor and about 10 ft off the bottom (which I think was 70 ft down), and I could see that it wasn't caught anymore, so I pulled on the chain to get it away from the rocks and came up and we were free. I think I was 60 ft down, and thats the furthest I've been.
We also walked around to this shallow area and waded among the leopard sharks, which didn't come too close, but were interesting. It was hard to get a good picture, though. And when we came in, there is the picture of us paddling in my Nucanoe, which is still working great.

1 comment:

mlloyd said...

how fast was the tri going while you surfskied? We've towed people on surfboards off of Bryan's work boat. A really heavy aluminum skiff. We also regular skied, but I prefer surfing, we almost got some wake to surf but need a heavier boat with more horses to create a better wake.