Gull Island 2 day trip, 3/26 & 27, 2011
The week before this trip we had record rainfall and snow in Ventura County so things were not looking so good. Even the marine forecast didn’t look that good so I got in touch with Eric the owner and captain of the Peace and he assured me that everything looked OK. For the most part I figured we probably wouldn’t make it to Santa Rosa, but we would still get some good diving in. As Friday approached the weather was looking a little better and of course the weather report for the week after the trip was sunny with temperatures of 75°-80°.
We boarded Friday night and we were scheduled to leave at 3:00am instead of 2:00am which was still a good sign. Everyone boarded and got there stuff together and prepared for a bumpy ride over to Santa Cruz and guess what? The ride over was actually not bad with the seas being calmer then expected and then once we had the cover of the island it became even smoother which was a very good sign. We started the day at Gull Island doing 3 dives there out a ways from the island itself. There was a swell and it would have been way to much surge and swell to dive in close to the island. The weather topside was very little wind and looking like it would rain sometime during the day, but when was the question. Underwater the visibility was varied from 15’-30’+ but probably averaged about 25’ with the temperature in the low 50’s. It was a bit chilly in a wetsuit, but the hot tub surely helped out.
We then headed east for 2 more dives at Albert’s Pt. and then to Drop off reef. Both were great spots especially Drop Off reef. Afterwards we headed east a little ways to Bowen for the night for an excellent dinner and where a few brave souls did a night dive. As always Joe out did himself cooking for everyone during the trip and the crew were equally as good taking care of everyone.
For the next day there were 2 choices as to what we could do so we took a vote after dinner, the 1st was to head back up to Gull Island and then work our way back or the 2nd choice was continue heading down the backside of Cruz and then over to Anacapa. Either way there was no guarantee to as if the conditions would improve or not. The 1st choice won by the biggest majority so early in the morning the Peace pulled the anchor and headed back to Gull Island.
It was a little windier on Sunday but the seas were also calmer. The 1st and 2nd dive spots were outside and to the south of Gull Island. The 1st was very nice with some big drop offs and ledges. Afterwards we headed east to Bowen Pt for the 3rd dive and then to Flame reef for the 4th dive. Flame reef was excellent and one of my favorites of this trip. My favorite dive of the trip was the 2nd one on Saturday were I played with the sea lions and was also able to get some excellent video of them playing.
The ride back was nice getting back about 6:30 and then it was time to say by to all my new friends that I look forward to seeing again very soon.