Monday the 27th was a bank holiday so myself, Alistair and Jan decided to head off to The Caves. Alistair and I had both dived here before so we knew what to expect but I think it was the first time either of us had seen the tunnel(underside of the bridge) flowing so fast with water as it’d been raining pretty hard all morning. It’s always tricky working your way down through the tunnel but we all managed to get down to the shore without major incident.
Alistair and I were first in while Jan provided shore cover. As soon as we descended the visibility was bad, very bad. At about 6 meters there was some light, sort of like looking through strong tea and it got worse the deeper we went, both of us trying to keep close together just to keep sight of each other. At 15-20 meters things started to get better and everything got pretty clear. We nosed around for a little and Alistair got some pictures.
Jan and I were next in and the tide had come in a little making it easier for us to get in. The visibility down to around 10 meters was terrible but we kept going down looking for the decent visibility Alistair and I had found before. At around 25-30 meters we found it, it’s pitch dark down there but with our torches the visibility was great and we got to see a few big crabs and have a nose around the many huge rocks that seem like cliffs and probably make the dive feel like being in a cave to some. I attempted to bag a crab but the little bugger was stubborn and refused to budge. I’d really stirred up the silt by that point and reduced the visibility to nothing again so we decided to head back and slowly make our ascent.
Jan and Alistair were next in and the tide had come right in by that point making it almost possible to do a giant stride entry if the visibility was better. They reported the same bad visibility down there and couldn’t get to that elusive clear area we’d found before.
I really enjoyed the days diving despite the poor weather and visibility but I think this dive is best done on high tide for an easier entry and preferably on a dry day. If you like night dives but only have time to do them during the day, then this is the place for you! Everybody was looking a little bit cold and tired afterwards so we all headed to “The Pit Stop” in Arrochar for some hot food and drinks.
Thanks to Darryl(DiveTramp) for the loan of his O2 kit, thankfully we didn’t need it.