Trip Report

Brighton – a little bit of a clustercuss


The Brighton trip weekend sadly began with a blow out on Saturday, but
the ever-desperate-to-dive Will suggested we have a splash in the
quarry before heading to Brighton in the evening.

image1Anne, Ellie, Jun-Ho, Will, and I took to the waters at St Andrews Lake
in Kent, while Olivia provided excellent shore cover and HSAC’s most
high fashion moment since Pauline went to Tesco’s on a beer run in a
full wetsuit back in May.

We enjoyed the bathtub warmth of the cloudy shallows (19-21 degrees!),
but had better vis (3-4m) at depths where temps were 12 degrees
chillier, and caught sight of a transit van, yacht, gnome garden, and
post box.

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In Brighton, we met with remaining divers Brian, Garry, Mick, Andy,
and Brad (and joyfully reunited with Anna!) at our digs for the night,
which were undoubtedly more geared towards the stag/hen crowd than the
responsible, early-rising diver (5 J Bombs for £5, anyone?). We
ventured out to a nearby pub and enjoyed a nice meal and quiet pint
before retiring to our beds.

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After a cool and restful night, we were up bright and early Sunday
morning for ropes off at 7:30 AM. Our first dive was on the SS City of
Brisbane – an impressive wreck torpedoed in 1918, 137m long at a
maximum depth of 20m at slack, standing approximately 6m off the sea
floor. There was lots of sea life observed in the incredible wreckage:
shy lobsters, angry crabs, wandering blennies, and menacing eels.

After a quick fill up at Newhaven port, we set out to Kings West Ledge
for a drift dive. Poor vis and a great deal of sand meant some lucky
divers got the opportunity to successfully rehearse separation
procedures, while other pairs had a relaxing 13m drift through a
sandbar.

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Sadly, Ellie couldn’t dive due to problems equalising, and Brian’s
cold kept him from a second dive; a blown boot meant soaking-wet Will
couldn’t join us for the drift. Although not everything went to plan,
we thoroughly enjoyed the dives we did and had a wonderful weekend in
the sun. Thanks to Will for managing an excellent trip and to all for
making it a success!