No photos, though Ali and Cameron may have some to add!
Spent the weekend out at the Poor Knights courtesy of Ocean Blue
along with Rob, Sel, Paul, Cameron and Ali.
We had hoped to have three days, but the forecast wasn't looking too hot for today so we cut it back to just the two. Before arriving in Tutukaka on Friday evening, there was a real kerfuffle of activity in Auckland - sorting out the aftermath of someone breaking in to Rob's truck, and arranging lift shares. We finally got all that sorted and made the trip north in time for dinner at Schnappa Rock.
First dive was at the canyon, on the northern side of Motu Kapiti, where we tucked away from the wind chop on the surface. Cameron, Ali and I cruised along the wall for an hour or so. Very pleasant diving, with plenty of encrusting life on the wall.
Paul and I teamed up for the second dive, whilst everyone else was planning a dive on Landing Bay Pinnacle we swam over for a dive in Taravana Cave, after which we navigated our way to the pinnacle and Paul/Rob continued their dive together whilst Sel joined me and kept me company as I completed my deco. Lots of fish life around the pinnacle and good vis. With so many divers used to measuring vis on the Wellington scale (1-5m, to 0.1m precision) we finally agreed that the vis was off the scale and so was in the "lots" category!
Third dive of the day, for the keeners, was at the Gardens. I was feeling lazy, so had a nap on the boat and gossiped with Kev whilst he rustled up dinner for the evening - a very nice curry indeed.
With the forecast for the Sunday not so great, our plan was to get a couple of good dives in during the morning and then run for the shelter of the harbour. Kev took us to Northern Arch, where Cameron, Ali, Paul and myself were going to start our dive together - with Paul and I separating off after a while. Ali and Cameron were in the water first, and you couldn't miss the tone of excitement. We all descended together into the midst of a sea of fish - the entire arch was rammed with pink maomao and demoiselles, with large snapper lurking around. Paul and headed through the archway for a 40m+ dive, returning to complete deco back amongst all the fish where Ali and Kent (the deckhand) were madly snapping away with their cameras. Ali god some great video footage of a bronze whaler that was circling around.
We stayed at Northern Arch for the second dive, though conditions had picked up a little and the water a little murkier. Paul and I headed out towards Te Araara point, where we were joined by the odd kingfish cruising by, before returning to the archway for the inevitable buddy sway - Paul and Rob headed off, whilst Sel and I just hung out in the archway for a bit whilst I finished my deco. The current had definitely picked up, so we headed south down towards Catton's Cave, though I for one was starting to get a bit chilled so we headed our way back to the boat where Kev was waiting with all the hot drinks and chocolate you could ask for.
All in all, a fun weekend - great diving, relaxed company, awesome boat. Does it get better than this?