People like to dive for different reasons and that affects their dive style and preferences. Some like the big or “dangerous” creatures, and they dive to search for these for the “wow!” factor. Some just like to looks around casually and whatever they see is entertaining enough. Some like the tiny little creatures, like to stop and look around and see the little things hiding between the seaweed. These different preferences affect how we dive. We may fin faster to cover more space during the dive hoping to find that torpedo ray everybody is talking about. Or sometimes go extremely slow, or just stop and hover over a big boulder covered with life to find that pretty little nudibranch.
In an optimal dive you and your buddy share similar preferences. That makes the whole difference. In New England I often dive with the same group, and now I realize that we are lucky to have each other as buddies because we enjoy diving similarly. We go in a very slow pace, some of us like to take pictures, some just like to hover and enjoy the calmness and observing the ocean life.
Why am I talking about this? The first day of new year I went diving with a slightly different group, who move much faster than I was used to. Most of the dive I was far left behind, trying not to lose my buddies at the same time trying to see some ocean life in winter time. I didn’t feel I had enough time to investigate the rocks anf formations on my way. That made me realize and appreciate my dive buddies who allow me to take my time with rocks and crevices and taking ~30 pictures of everything I see.
The first day 2015 was in Back Beach, the water was so calm and clear. We entered the water and the visibility was amazing, maybe ~30 ft. During this dive I haven’t seen any fish, I saw moving legs of a lobster, one or two crabs and star fish. So it was the nudibranchs, I saw after a long time since early summer, which made my dive. I saw four different nudis, all different species. They were incredibly tiny, reminding me Mary’s (from Cape Ann Divers) suggestion of carrying magnifying lense under the water to look at the details. Since these nudibranchs are so tiny yet full of cute details I would really use a magnifying lense.
One thing I was curious about was the white patches of goo I saw sort of at the shallow part of our dive. It may be left over egg protections or something like that, it was moving like a jelly when I waved some current into them. I would like to know what they were…
It was really cold when we came out, below freezing and some wind. But still the beach was full of divers getting their new years dive in, hoping to spend rest of the year full of happy divings. At least I am hoping so…
Happy new year!