Newsletter: Warmer and warmer

Hi divers

Weekend dive plans

Friday: Shore diving at Long Beach at 10.00 am

Saturday: Launching from False Bay Yacht Club at 7.00 am for a double tank dive

The days are getting longer and the daytime temperatures are slowly creeping upwards… Well, on some days. Saturday looks like a better bet for False Bay with Hout Bay being an option on Sunday. The water colour off Dungeons has improved slightly today.

Tomorrow I am shore diving students at Long Beach at 10.00 am. On Saturday we will do an early False Bay double tank dive at 7.00 am. Let me know if you’d like to get wet.

 

DAFF octopus fishing gear
DAFF octopus fishing gear

Here’s a little bit of reading on the octopus fishery in False Bay (courtesy of Yvette!). This NSRI blog post, and the comments, are also required reading.

Coming up

As part of First Thursdays, you can attend the opening of the Birdlife Oceans of Life photographic exhibition at the South African Museum on the evening of Thursday 6 October. There’s information here (facebook) – this year’s exhibition includes a retrospective of the last few years’ best images.

Diversnight is on Saturday 7 November, so start charging your torches!

regards

Tony Lindeque
076 817 1099
www.learntodivetoday.co.za
www.learntodivetoday.co.za/blog/

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Newsletter: Copycat weather

Hi divers

Weekend dive plans

Sunday: shore or boat dives, depending where the viz is!

A cold front arrives tonight and will make itself felt until Saturday evening. Sunday will be best for diving. I have student dives to complete; if the inshore conditions are good, we’ll shore dive. If the visibility is only to be found further out, we’ll launch Seahorse. If you’re keen to get wet, let me know and I’ll update you on Saturday afternoon.

Storm clouds
Storm clouds

Keeping out of trouble

There’s lots going on as we sail into spring:

regards

Tony Lindeque
076 817 1099
www.learntodivetoday.co.za
www.learntodivetoday.co.za/blog/

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Newsletter: Adventure diving

Hi divers

Weekend dive plans

Sunday: late morning dives, location to be determined by the weather!

It is once again one of those weekends where diving will be best on Sunday. “But where?” is the million dollar question. Humping south easterly wind on Saturday may or may not mess up False Bay entirely, and may or may not be enough to clean the Atlantic. So it’s a Sunday diving day, and a late Saturday decision on where and what time… More vague than that I cannot be. If you’re up for this undetermined diving adventure, let me know and I’ll keep you posted about what’s happening where.

Diversnight 2016

Before a Clan Stuart night dive
Before a Clan Stuart night dive

Diversnight is happening on 5 November this year (thanks CvS for the reminder)! This Norwegian night diving initiative has origins that include cake, which is all you need to know. If that’s not enough for you, read more here and here. Participation is free of charge, the more the merrier. I’ll remind you closer to the time so that you can get your torch batteries charged.

regards

Tony Lindeque
076 817 1099
www.learntodivetoday.co.za
www.learntodivetoday.co.za/blog/

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Newsletter: Seal of approval

Hi divers

Weekend dive plans

Saturday: Launching early from Simon’s Town jetty for Omega Reef and Castor Rock Northern Pinnacle

Sunday: Launching early from Simon’s Town jetty for Castor Rock Southern Pinnacle and Roman’s Rest

Southern elephant seal (juvenile)
Southern elephant seal (juvenile)

Dive report

We had decent diving at Castor Rock and Boat Rock last weekend despite the patchy spots of visibility.

On Saturday evening twenty five divers shore dived at Long Beach and the Clan Stuart for 2015’s Diversnight. The conditions were pristine, and False Bay’s marine wildlife was out in abundance for the occasion. It was great to put faces to names and to meet and dive with so many of you. Thanks to everyone who took part!

The viz has improved all week and was already 10 metres on Tuesday when we went to Castor Rock and Rambler Rock. We are out tomorrow and Saturday, and I am sure the excellent viz is pretty much everywhere in False Bay. The weekend looks rosy: the  wind is light and the swell is around 3 metres on Saturday with a little less on Sunday.

We will launch early on both days, on Saturday to Omega Reef and Castor Rock Northern Pinnacle, Sunday to Castor Rock Southern Pinnacle and Roman’s Rest. Text, Whatsapp, email or carrier pigeon if you wish to book.

regards

Tony Lindeque
076 817 1099
www.learntodivetoday.co.za
www.learntodivetoday.co.za/blog/

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Newsletter: Where have all the weekends gone?

Hi divers

Weekend dive plans

Saturday: Night dive at Long Beach, 7.15 pm

Sunday: Boat dives from Simon’s Town jetty at 8.30 am to SAS Pietermaritzburg / 11.00 to Maidstone Rock

Weekend diving has become a scarce commodity of late and the best diving days have fallen in the week. This weekend looks a lot better than last weekend: there is very little swell and no howling winds to deal with. False Bay needs some westerly wind to clean it up, so I am going to choose Sunday as the better option for this weekend’s diving. It’s windier than Saturday but less likely to rain, plus False Bay will have had a bit more time to improve. The Atlantic was crystal clear yesterday but I have my doubts it is going to stay that way for the weekend with the hot day we have just had.

Diversnight

We are night diving on Saturday evening as part of the international Diversnight event, and will meet at Long Beach at around 7.15 pm. The idea is to be in the water at 15 minutes past 8.00 pm (2015). Text me if you are joining, make sure you bring your permit to dive in an MPA, and if you need to rent kit or a cylinder, I need to know by tomorrow (Friday) evening please.

Burrowing anemone on a night dive at Long Beach
Burrowing anemone on a night dive at Long Beach

Permits

Be sure your permit to dive in an MPA is up to date. It’s particularly important that you bring it on Saturday evening if you plan to dive, so don’t wait until lunchtime on Saturday to look for it!

Bits & bobs

Diarise the Shark Spotters fundraiser on Sunday 22 November – should be fun.

Clare wrote a small travel guide with information on the visible shipwrecks around Cape Town. Check it out here.

regards

Tony Lindeque
076 817 1099
www.learntodivetoday.co.za
www.learntodivetoday.co.za/blog/

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Newsletter: Weekly cycles

Hi divers

Weekend dive plans

No diving planned

We seem to be in a cycle of great diving days in the week and not so great conditions on weekends. This weekend looks much the same as the last few and neither day is going to be great.

We have a scientific charter first thing on Saturday before the wind comes up, so won’t be running boat dives that day. By mid-morning on Saturday, the wind will be up at around 25 km/h from the south, and on Sunday it’s meant to be closer to 50. Sadly I think its best you haul out the lawnmower.

Boat Rock, photo by Arne Gething
Boat Rock, photo by Arne Gething

Thanks to Arne for this photo, taken at Boat Rock a couple of weeks ago…

Dates to diarise, things to do

Oceans of Life photographic exhibition currently at Iziko South African Museum

Diversnight at Long Beach, Saturday 7 November

Shark Spotters fundraiser and photo competition prizegiving at Primi Piatti, Muizenberg on Sunday 22 November

regards

Tony Lindeque
076 817 1099
www.learntodivetoday.co.za
www.learntodivetoday.co.za/blog/

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Newsletter: Offshore wind

Hi divers

Weekend dive plans

Sunday: Two launches to Caravan Reef and Maidstone Rock, meeting at False Bay Yacht Club at 7.30 am

At Shark Alley on Sunday
At Shark Alley on Sunday

We did an early launch last Sunday in the hope of ducking the wind but despite a really good first dive we called it off for the second dive as the wind had picked up dramatically. The weather this weekend looks similar… Much offshore wind to clean False Bay on Saturday and much less for Sunday. We will go with two launches for Sunday, meeting in the parking lot at the yacht club at 7.30 am.

Dates to diarise

The Cape Town International Boat Show takes place this weekend at the CTICC. Look out for us there on Saturday!

Diversnight takes place on Saturday 7 November. It’s a great opportunity to dust off your night diving skills. Diarise!

regards

Tony Lindeque
076 817 1099
www.learntodivetoday.co.za
www.learntodivetoday.co.za/blog/

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Newsletter: Guest photographers

Hi divers

Weekend dive plans

Sunday: Launching from the Simon’s Town jetty at 8.30 am for Maidstone Rock / 11.00 am for Atlantis

Georgina at Boat Rock, photographed by Arne Gething
Georgina at Boat Rock, photographed by Arne Gething

I think most people are keen for summer to arrive. I know I am. We dived last Friday at Atlantis and Boat Rock and had pretty good conditions – thank you to Arne for the photo above! Last weekend was a washout and the week has been dry thanks to the spring tides, swell and some wind.

The whales heard my complaints from last week, and on Friday a young whale breached in front of us again. This time while Geoff was holding the camera and he got a great photo!

Breaching whale, picture by Geoff Spiby
Breaching whale, picture by Geoff Spiby

False Bay is currently flat but not very clean. We are meant to have two days of westerly or north westerly winds so I think Sunday will be an option. There is also less swell on Sunday. I don’t think it is going to be paradise, but it will certainly improve over what we have right now.

We will launch on Sunday from theSimon’s Town jetty at 8.30 am for Maidstone Rock and 11.00 am for Atlantis. This is the plan, but the dive sites may change as I prefer to dive in better visibility if we go that far south, so will change sites to suit the conditions.

In other news

Diarise Diversnight 2015 for the evening of Saturday 7 November! More details to follow.

Also, as of yesterday we are a PADI Resort Dive Centre – the only major difference so far is that we now appear here

regards

Tony Lindeque
076 817 1099
www.learntodivetoday.co.za
www.learntodivetoday.co.za/blog/

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Newsletter: Humpback winds

Hi divers

Planned dives

Saturday: No dives planned

Sunday: Boat dives from OPBC or Hout Bay if conditions permit

Midweek launch: From OPBC to see the Volvo Ocean Race yachts arriving in Table Bay

Dive conditions

The wind is forecast to do some real south easterly blowing over the next few days, so False Bay is messy but the Atlantic is a bit cleaner. There is too much wind on Saturday for any kind of pleasant diving or boating, but Sunday has less wind (according to some of the wildly contradictory weather forecasts) and I think the odds are good that Table Bay will be a better option than Hout Bay, if the water cleans up enough to make dives worthwhile. It is difficult to say for certain where would be best but we will make that call on Saturday afternoon. The plan will be to dive North and South Paw if conditions permit. Let me know if you’d like to be on the watchlist!

Baby basket star by Georgina Jones
Baby basket star by Georgina Jones

Last weekend we dived out of Hout Bay, visiting the BOS 400, Star Walls and then Tafelberg Reef. The water was less clean than expected: 8-10 metre viz and a very cold 9 degrees. Thanks to Georgina for this picture of an itsy bitsy basket star! On Monday I was out along the Atlantic seaboard for a film charter and despite the fog we found dolphins, a sunfish, a whale, hundreds of seals, and incredible bird life once we were far offshore. There’s an album of photos on facebook.

Volvo Ocean Race

The Volvo Ocean Race first leg comes to an end next week and the yachts are expected to arrive at the V&A Waterfront from Tuesday onwards. There is currently less than 9 nautical miles between the top four after several thousand miles of open ocean racing. The finish will be really exciting and we plan to launch as many days as possible next week to hopefully catch a glimpse as they race by… And perhaps a photo or two. Let me know if you think you’ll be able to take a midweek day of leave to go out on the boat.

Diversnight

Diversnight is an international night diving event that we try to participate in each year, just because. This coming Thursday, 6 November we will meet at Long Beach in Simon’s Town at 7.30 pm with the aim of starting the dive at 8.00 pm. We must be in the water at 14 minutes past eight to “count” and the aim is to set a new world record. There are currently 16 countries participating in this event. You can RSVP to the event on facebook, and read more about Diversnight here. There is no charge apart from any gear you may need.

If you need to rent gear, please let me know by Wednesday morning. You don’t necessarily need to be an Advanced diver to do a night dive, so give me a call or send me a mail to talk about it if you’re unsure. If you’ve been thinking about an Advanced course, though, this is a good time to get started.

regards

Tony Lindeque
076 817 1099
www.learntodivetoday.co.za
www.learntodivetoday.co.za/blog/

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Newsletter: Cupcakes at night

Hi divers

Weekend diving

Wind, walkers and waves will mean we are diving on Saturday in False Bay starting real early, i.e. 7.00 am at the Yacht club. We plan to dive Atlantis and the Brunswick.

On Sunday there will be way too much traffic and road closures to make an early start possible and I don’t think the wind will allow anything later in the day. I am really keen to do a double tank dive to Justin’s Caves or to dive North and South Paw, but will make that call on Saturday afternoon once we have a better idea of the wind (which looks iffy) and the viz.

Week’s diving

The last week has been spent driving instead of diving as all our cylinders were due for their annual medical examination. We did cancel last weekend’s dives due to the wind being a little stronger than I like to launch and dive in, but the guys that did go out reported really good conditions.

Divers near the jetty in Simon's Town
Divers near the jetty in Simon’s Town

We are just home from a really good night dive and all in all we were 19 divers. We dived below and around the jetty in Simon’s Town and had passable viz and a great deal of jellyfish to contend with. Thanks to all those folks from far and wide (including OMSAC!) that joined the fun. The aim with Diversnight International is to have as many divers in the water at 2013 as possible, world wide, and then to eat cake. The numbers since this event started are:

  • 2005: 351 divers in Norway.
  • 2006: 889 divers in Denmark, Norway and Sweden.
  • 2007: 1859 divers in Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden and also Svalbard.
  • 2008: 2183 divers in Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Egypt, Indonesia, France, Spain, Faroe Islands and Belgium
  • 2009: 2749 divers, 218 divesites and 20 countries
  • 2010: 1700 divers, 175 dive sites and 22 countries
  • 2011: 2577 divers, 196 dive sites and 24 countries
  • 2012: 2322 divers, 231 dive sites and 25 countries

If you think the water is cold here, you should feel it in Scandinavia in November, where this event started!

Brave jellyfish warriors at Diversnight
Brave jellyfish warriors at Diversnight

Prizes

Congratulations to Bianca, who won two boat dives in the Diversnight lucky draw this evening! Also congratulations to Esti who has won a Nitrox Specialty course in the October boat divers’ lucky draw.

We will have another draw for boat divers in November and one in December. To enter, come for a boat dive. You’ll win a Nitrox course, or, if you’re already Nitrox certified, you’ll win two boat dives!

Gear

Sometimes I have students and former students who want to sell some gear secondhand. If you’re looking for gear, let me know and I might be able to put you in touch with someone. The details of the transaction are up to you! At the moment I know someone with a Suunto D6i dive computer and a regulator set for sale. If you’re interested drop me a mail and I’ll hook you up.

regards

Tony Lindeque
076 817 1099
www.learntodivetoday.co.za
www.learntodivetoday.co.za/blog/

Diving is addictive!

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