The hot, humid weather gave way to fall-like weather on Saturday as a cold front moved through the area. While it was bringing a relief with cooler, dry air, it was also bringing wind and this was destined to throw a wrench in our plans for Saturday. Overnight it got quite windy right into Saturday morning. I got up at 4:30 am to check the weather. I gulped as I saw 15-20 knots of N wind and 4 foot seas at the weather buoy. Certainly with this, the Snetind was out seeing it is next to the weather buoy. We decided to go ahead and deal with bumpy conditions on the Poling.
We met bright and early at the dock. It was a touch cool for shorts and crocs with 55F air temperatures. We loaded up and got underway. We had a slightly smaller group with some last minute cancellations so it was a low key ride up to Cape Ann with plenty of room to relax. When we got onsite we grabbed a mooring and got settled in. There was another charter boat on site already. Dave and John headed in first. The other divers followed and when they returned it was my turn to dive with Scott. Dave said it was a bit murky so I decided to leave the camera behind. By this point, the other charter boat had departed and another one arrived taking it’s place. Indeed thanks to the weird weather the Poling was a busy place! The conditions were actually a lot better than I expected given the wind and duration it was blowing. I don’t think offshore was an option, but it was nice to not get beat up on the Poling.
Scott and I splashed and dropped down. We were on the break mooring. We headed aft and took a tour though the inside, then headed over to the break and swam around the sand line at the bottom. The visibility was maybe 15-20 feet and murky. We cruised around the wreck until we decided to go up. We did a short deco and headed in. By the arrival of the afternoon the wind had diminished and it was a beautiful day. It felt a bit fall-like, but it had warmed up and was quite nice.
Sunday our destination was the Patriot – our first trip of the season due to uncooperative weather earlier in the spring. We did not have a very good slack window. Unfortunately the tide tables this year are not great for weekend, morning slack windows. So we thought the current would be manageable and decided to schedule in on this day anyway. We loaded up with an eager group and got off the dock in no time. We had a beautiful ride out to the wreck. Upon arrival, we got the line in the water and Dave and Dominique splashed in first. We had our eyes peeled looking for whales, but none were to be seen today.
When Dave returned he reported “ok” visibility that was a bit murky. He also said the bottom current was strong. Ugh. Nonetheless, Scott , Feng and I suited up for our dive and I brought the camera along. Dropping down it was murky in the water column but before too long the wreck came into view. We poked around on the topside side of the wreck in the lee of the current. I tried to swim off and around the bow for photos and I couldn’t do it! The current was too strong. I literally could not get out past the bow. I decided to stay in the lee of the current and work on some photos there. Eventually I tried one more time to get our around the bow and could not do it. In fact, I started to think it was getting stronger and it might be time to split. So we headed up. A short distance up off the bottom and the current dropped out, so it was a nice ascent. The visibility was about 20 feet, but it was just cloudy enough that photos were challenging. Nevertheless, it was a great day and nice to finally get out on the Patriot.
We cruised back to Beverly in nice conditions – it was another beautiful day out there for sure. We docked, unloaded and called it a weekend!