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Rig/Wreck trip-December 15, 2012

The rig wreck trips always do good and this one was no different with it being sold out 2 weeks prior. What is the draw you may ask? There is just something about diving a rig especially Eureka that is very exciting and if you are looking for scallops this is the place to get them. The part of the trip I like best is  diving the Olympic II. SoCal divers are very lucky to have a wreck like the Olympic II such a short distance away and with its size (258’x38′), depth (100′) and the amount of wreckage that has survived the years it makes for an excellent wreck dive!

Our only concern for this trip was the weather. The forecast called for good seas and swells of only 2’ft. but it was more the rain everyone was worried about. Does rain really matter? After all we are jumping into the ocean and there is a good size galley to get into if needed. Also, it seems when days are like this it usually turns out to be some of the best days of diving.  It did rain all Friday night and was clear on Saturday morning and it stayed clear and beautiful all day with the forecast being wrong again.

Our 1st stop was the Olympic II a short distance out from the harbor. With it only about 30-40 minutes out you basically need to start suiting up once we leave the harbor. We anchored up and from looking down the anchor line it looked like we would be in for a treat. As I descended to the wreck I could tell this would be a great dive. We had no current and 30′-40′ ft of visibility. I followed the anchor line down only to see it was wrapped around some of the wreck in a not so good of a fashion. I had a great time testing my new Olympic E-PM1 camera and just hanging out basically in one spot. Your no deco time goes fast at 100′ and it was time to go back to the boat way to soon. Once on deck I could tell everyone really enjoyed the dive and there was even a few others that also though it would be fun to spend a whole day just diving the Olympic II.

After all the work and Jake using a lift bag to free the anchor we moved on over to the oil rig Eureka but after finding out there was some load/unloading going on we then moved to the rigs of Elly/Ellen.  These are smaller, shallower and after diving them we could see there just aren’t as exciting as the deeper and much larger Eureka rig. We had about 20′-30’ft of visibility and the water was green with more particulates in it.

We then had the chance to move back over to Eureka for our 3rd and last dive of the day. What a difference a short move into deeper water can make. We had conditions that were at least 100% better with blue water and 40′-50’ft of visibility. Everyone who made the last dive was extremely happy with the move not to mention Eureka is the best place for scallop gathering.

The trip turned out great not to mention there was an excellent group of divers on board all out just to have fun. On the way back to the harbor most of us enjoyed the free beer I had brought and some good conversation and along with that there was some new friends made!

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