Brad, Dan and Scott's Sailing Adventure

"There she is boys! The SS More Powerful than Superman, Batman, Spiderman, and the Incredable Hulk combined." This space will be used to post updates of our odyssey.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Dan and Brad's (+Hal's) Spearfishing Adventures III

Having been in the BVI's for a few days, where no spear fishing is allowed, we were missing one of our favorite activities. We had sailed around the western tip of Tortola and were en route to a very nice anchorage on Norman's Island called the Bight. Our path took us past a few very good spear fishing coves on the north coast of Saint John.
We anchored Kaleidoscope in Haulover Bay. On the way in we noticed that the bottom of this bay was a pretty constant 65 feet of depth. The current free dive record on Kaleidoscope was held by Dan who dove 45 feet while me and Scott scuba dived off Eagle Shoal. He said he though he could do another 15 feet easy. So we triangulated a spot with a house, small peninsula, and a distant island, the depth read exactly 65.
After anchoring we took the dinghy out to the spot and were surprised by the exceptional clarity of the water; the bottom could clearly be seen. This made the dive psychologically much less intimidating. Hal and Dan jumped out while I stayed in the dinghy struggling with my wet suit and other gear. I had drifted a little away but soon looked up to see Dan surface. He had made it to the bottom, but said, "I am never doing that again, I have never wanted to breathe so bad in my life."
This did not give Hal and I confidence. We decided to make a shallower dive and see how we felt. Both of us went down a little over half way and left very comfortable. Hal made the next attempt. Dan and I dove at intervals after him in order to assist him with the assent if needed. Hal touched bottom and arose unassisted. He was somewhat uncomfortable and said he had no plans for deeper dives in the future.
A little nervous after Dan and Hal's dives, I made my attempt. It takes a long time to swim down 65 feet and the whole time you are reminding yourself that you have to swim it all again before you get any air. A little freaked out I stopped a few feet from the bottom and began my accent. I made it to the surface without difficulty and with some breath to spare. This gave me confidence for my next dive where I reached the bottom and returned with a handful of sand as tangible proof.
We got skunked on the spear fishing trip, seeing nothing good enough to catch, but considered the day a success considering the bragging rights we acquired. We have no plans for 65+ foot dives, but we do now have much more confidence in our 40 foot free dives.