Sheephaven SAC Update 2nd Dec

Dec 03 2014 Posted by Office Administraton

Sheephaven SAC conducted this year’s Try-A-Dive on Wednesday evening in the Mevagh Dive Centre 3 meter heated pool. They had a great turn out of visitors who wanted to get a brief taste of scuba diving in the purpose built scuba centre under the guidance of Sheephaven instructors. Hopefully Wednesday evening’s Try-A-Dive will be enough to encourage their visitors to sign up for the Trainee Class of 2015, which Sheephaven SAC Training Officer Joe Neely will commence shortly.

The Trainee course fee is €200 which will qualify the diver as a 1 Star Diver after they have completed a series of lectures, pool exercises and open water diving and will allow them to continue onto the 2 Star Club diver course. Joe Neely can be contacted on 08612708977 for further details.

Two Sheephaven dive activities took place on Saturday morning, with first a dive party put out from Downings slipway for a dive on Pat Mc Gees, which was followed by a Search and Recovery Training Exercise also in Downings Harbour.

While there was not a lot of large fish observed on the dive, on the surface there was no less than 6 Seals observed on one occasion, some of which kept a close watch on the divers at the end of the dive.

On the return passage to Downings there was the brief observation of a single Porpoise, these are smaller and darker than the Dolphins that normally frequent Sheephaven Bay and generally are observed as singles.

The John Joe Rowland led Search and Recovery Course is now an annual event that provides CFT certification for 2 Star divers and above and subsequently allows them to participate in Search and Recovery activities, should the occasion arise.

In addition to the S&R Course the event was used to allow Sheephaven S&R members to complete one of their two compulsory Training Days.

As well as number of Sheephaven divers the participants on the S&R Course came from as far away as Dungannon and Dublin. They spent Friday evening conducting lectures on the theory element of S&R activities, while on Saturday morning they put that theory into practice with a Swim Line Search around Downings Pier.

The morning’s exercise included the recovery of a purpose-made manikin from the water in a depth of over 5 meters and as it so happened on the day reasonable water visibility

Paul Mc Cabe led Sunday morning’s dive to the Swim Through at Duncap Head on a morning of beautiful weather and only a slight swell.

The two boat dive party conducted the dive in two sticks to a maximum depth of 30 meters in excellent water visibility of at least 10 meters horizontally and water temperatures of no lower than 10 degrees Celsius.

Dive times of up to 40 minutes were recorded as the dive commenced from outside the swim-through at a depth of 11 meters, rising to two meters as the divers crossed the threshold of the swim-through and then back to 15 meters in the gully on the far side.

Inside the swim-through the divers encountered a Seal, who after an initial investigation of the divers quickly moved out of the way and was not seen again for the rest of the dive.

Once in the gully the divers moved out to deeper water with some getting a maximum depth of 30 meters on the substantial rock pavement that makes up the sea bed of Skate Bay side of Duncap Head.

After recovering all the divers the dive party returned to Downings with a following swell and once again had the great pleasure of meeting Porpoises in the bay.

This time is was a pod of three Porpoises that broke the surface just in front of the dive boats but they quickly moved away as they are much shyer that their larger and more boisterous counterparts the Dolphins.

A super weekend of diving finished off on Sunday by a great dive in perfect conditions and made possible by all who led dives, towed and fuelled boats and filled bottles, thanks once again to all involved.SHEEP3