A continuing log of dives and commentary on items of interest to students at Cordova Diving.
19 January 2012
Solo Diving off the Pelican Grand
After the two cold, deep dives yesterday, I was reluctant to leave my warm bed and head to the beach. I got up late. I puttered around. It was after 10:00 am before I was ready to go. The sun was well up and the lifey guards were atop their towers, so I went to the Pelican Grand to get into the water safely away from the life guard's line of sight.
I had decided to shoot supermacro today, so I selected a +4 diopter together with my 100mm macro lens. I was after some big pictures of some little things.
I have always enjoyed shooting Sharpnose Puffer fish. I smile whenever I see what could be eye lashes tattooed around their eyes and imagine some little shop under a rock where a sole tattoo artist works on the reef's creatures.
I swam to the edge of the reef to descend, then slowly worked my way South along the edge of the reef. There was a slight Southern current, and I let myself be pulled along in that current.
I moved slowly and patiently, so I got to see a lot of life that usually comes out once I have gone by. The unavoidable consequence of my inaction, however, was that I quickly got cold. The water temperature was only 67 degrees Fahrenheit. I was in a full 3/2 mm wetsuit with a sleeveless vest and a hood, but I was cold throughout the entire 77 minutes of the dive.
At first it seemed that there was little life on the edge of the reef, but floating slowly with the current allowed me to pass very close to fellows like this Seaweed Blenny without appearing threatening. I got some good shots.
There were a lot of Neon Goby. They dart rapidly here and there, making it very difficult to get a well focused shot. I got a few.
The coral is so much easier to shoot, since it does not swim. I spent some time playing with the strobe and the lighting used in my shots.
I spent the entire dive along the edge of the reef, traveling a distance of less than 100 yards to the south in well over an hour. I was more than ready to get out of the water at the end of the dive, however. I was shivering uncontrollably.