Lundy 15 -17 June 2012

On Thursday evening, torrential rain driving down from Buckinghamshire to Ilfracombe in Devon was not an encouraging sign.  Previous trips to Lundy had been blessed with fantastic weather; in the wet “summer of 2012”, it was not looking good.  However the clouds parted and a blue sky greeted arrival to the Ilfracombe so hope was restored.  A visit to a CAMRA prize winning pub, with a tour of its offerings, put divers in a fine frame of mind.

Friday dawned bright but windy – very windy – a strong SW wind.  After a leisurely start due to tides, we were off.  After staying fairly close to the north Devon coast, the Obsession 2 turned more into the middle of the Bristol Channel to head out for Lundy.  YEE HA!  what a ride.  Waves were about 7m and the boat was seriously tossed about – its crew and passengers even more. With significant relief, we finally arrived in the lee of Lundy.

Given the strong SW/W winds, we were constrained to dive close into the eastern Lundy shore.  We dived two scenic dives including with seals.  Rough seas, average/poor vis, plus cold and rainy weather meant this was not a great day’s diving.

Back on land we unloaded the luggage from the boat and tanks for refilling.  Some of the party was staying in a cottage; others were camping.  We arrived at the campsite in a very strong wind – so powerful that some of our tents were not strong enough to stand up to the wind so these campers had to take refuge in a barn.  Three tents managed to survive, huddled in the lee of a wall.

An evening in the Marisco tavern helped us to warm up and dry out a little bit.  We enjoyed some close games of crib. Despite the poor weather, spirits were not dampened.

The tents survived a very windy night (another camper had his tent blown down during the night) and we were ready, after a long wait for breakfast (due to staff shortages/disorganisation in the Marisco), to go diving.  We dived the knoll pins – seeing some very large lobsters and lots of dogfish.  Then diving with seals in the sheltered bay.

The weather had improved on Saturday evening- still windy, but no rain.  After return to Lundy island, we were able to explore the island with time to walk to the North Light, as well as climb the middle lighhouse (dating from the 1930’s) where there are a couple of deckchairs in the lantern to sit and enjoy the view – or alternatively just decompress in the Marisco with a few glasses of Lundy Light!

Saturday evening was better with the wind moderating and moving to the Westerly direction.

Sunday dawned sunny and bright.  Breakfast in the Marisco was back to normal speedy service, and we loaded the boat ready to dive and return to the mainland.  First dive was on the Robert and Iona wrecks. Then we moored in a sheltered bay and snorkelled with seals.  The last dive at the north end of the island offered both a fast drift for some, and more seals for others who elected to stay close to the shore.

With the following westerly wind, the return trip to Ilfracombe went quickly and comfortably.  We unloaded the boat, were able to enjoy the Ifracombe Victorian society’s parade and then headed back for home.

Divers were Chris, David, Debbie, Garrie, Geoff, Hazel, Mark, Paul F., Paul Q. and Sally.

Many thanks to Debbie for organising.

CR

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