Labor Day Wreck Diving Weekend-9/1 & 2, 2012
Ventura County Wrecks dive trip report for Channel Islands Dive Adventures. Trip was on the Explorer on Sept. 1 & 2, 2012 and was one of the best!
This was a weekend of wreck diving I had been looking towards too for some time and with the weekend before having some of the most awesome diving conditions everywhere in So Cal I was excited and then it happened, the big swell and wind that moved in on the Thursday before. Mother Nature has a mind of her own and I guess she decided she was tired of the great conditions she was giving everyone and decided to change-up a few things like the sea conditions.
The plan was to dive the Spirit of America and Santa Cruz Island on Saturday and then the Kopco Star (kelpcutter) and 2 other wrecks along the Ventura County coast on Sunday with a BBQ on Saturday evening on the Explorer dive boat and what happened was the BBQ (as planned) and 2 days of diving the backside of Santa Cruz. Don’t get me wrong, diving Santa Cruz island is always good with the many dive sites there are but it was diffidently not as good as diving some wrecks…o’ well, plans change and we just have to learn to go with it as we did.
CIDA had a full boat both days with several non-divers along for the ride. The ride out both days was somewhat rough as the winds blew and the swell tried to get a few people sick but it was all good once we hit the Yellowbanks area of Santa Cruz. Yellowbanks has some excellent dive sites with some excellent outer deeper areas but with the conditions we had we also had some strong currents that kept us away from those areas so we did the best we could. On Saturday we did dives at the Pink Ribbon area, Flame Reef and the wall by Towers and on Sunday we did Flame Reef and the wall by Towers again and the Yellowbanks area. The visibility was the best at Flame reef running about 20’-25’ and a water temp in the low 60’s.
The topside conditions were great on the backside with calm seas and little wind which made for a very nice day out. On Saturday evening CIDA had a free BBQ which I did with the help of my wife (Tessie) and several friends. CIDA supplied hamburgers & hot dogs with all the fixings including macaroni, potato & pasta salads along with chips & dip and tortilla chips with homemade salsa. It was lots of fun including the 3 places that had live music at the harbor.
All in all the weekend was lots of fun even with the change of plans and I think most everyone else had a great time!
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By Ken Kollwitz