Lots of cool stuff to see

Oh my goodness did we see stuff today.  I went out diving with 2 friends at shark’s cove. I also tried out my new hood today.  I was nice and toasty.  I don’t necessarily need it for the diving I do with these 2 but I certainly do for the diving I do with my instructor. 

The conditions today were great!  The cove was flat and the weather was sunny.  I still can’t believe all the cool stuff we saw today.  My dive buddies and I both like to go to another entry point that shares parking with shark’s cove called firehouse.  It’s a great dive, but a rocky entry, and since it was low tide we decided to skip that for today.

The first tank we headed out to the right of shark’s cove to the lava tubes.  Funny, I’ve never been in a lava tube above water, I’ll have to add that to my to do list.  I had sort of a blond moment on that first dive when I only took 14lbs with me into the water.  I didn’t factor in extra weight for the hood.  Duh!  I got down but I was higher in the water than I’m used to and it threw my buoyancy out of whack.  I do have to say though, a hood makes a big difference.  Perhaps enough to keep me from having to buy a thicker wet suit for those marathon dives.  I got some really great shots of under water landscapes and cup coral under the overhangs.  I’ve become quite fascinated with the way the light plays off the rocks and the water in these overhead environments.  I like to try to use the rocks as a partial frame while making the water and the light the star of the show.  It’s actually really fun.  It’s a stark contrast to my husband who likes to take pictures of fish and other animals under the water.  I  guess we will have a good variety of photos.  We also saw a juvenile turtle probably only a year or two old.  But it was on its way somewhere and didn’t stop for me to take a picture of it.  Darned Turtle. 

Cup Coral

The second dive I added 2lbs for the hood and this was just what I needed.  I was so much more comfortable and able to enjoy my dive more.  We headed out to the Left to an overhang with cup coral that my friend likes to look at.  As we made our way to the overhang I could feel a current.  As we came around the other side of the over hang I could really feel that current.  It wasn’t a game changer or the worst I’ve even felt but it was definitely noticeable.  We swam against it out to an area we call “the cathedral”.  I really want to get a picture of the cathedral in its entirety but the visibility wasn’t good enough today.  It’s a large rock arch that almost meets at the top.  It’s so large that you could drive a bus or a train through the opening.  It’s an amazing piece of underwater landscape. 

On the way back in we rode the current and it was relaxing.  I felt a bit like the character crush in finding nemo “just riding the current man”.  Just before we got back to shark’s cove, in an area where we take our discover scuba diving clients, I spotted a good-sized octopus.  It was definitely the highlight of my day and a source of envy for my husband.  I spotted this guy just as he moved from one location to another and I got to watch his color change which was oh so cool.  Most people don’t know much about octopi so I am going to seize the opportunity here. 

An octopus is extremely smart.  I watched a TV show recently that compared their intellect and problem solving ability to that of a human.  They conducted experiments that proved that they have the ability to problem solve.  Everyone knows that and octopus has the ability to emit a cloud of ink, but not everyone knows that the ink serves more than one purpose.  In addition to obscuring the vision of its preditors the ink is what the octopus uses to camouflage with its environment.  They have the ability to change color and texture to blend it with any number of surfaces.  Lots of people like to handle octopus, but I am against this because if you coax an octopus out of its hole and cause it to expel it’s ink you have just taken away their defense.  Once that ink is expelled it takes time to rebuild that ink, just like if you lost blood.  So while the ink is being replaced the octopus is left defenseless.  Therefore, handling an octopus leaves it without its defenses. 

The octopus we saw today was pretty good size.  It started to hide in a hole, but once it realized I wasn’t a threat, it was almost playful.  Instead of hiding it stayed put and even swam a bit.  I was able to get several good photos. 

you can see a shift in texture here


Today was a really great day for diving and it was really great to enjoy 2 dives for the simple joy of diving.  It felt good to get out there for fun after working so hard the last 6 weeks!


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