Nov 082012
Cave diving through history: Cocklebiddy Cave, 1982 (Part 2)

After leaving the other divers at the first rockpile, Hugh Morrison, Ron Allum and Dad pushed the 15 tank sled 100m into the second sump before returning and rearranging. A change of strategy from following the roof to swimming at a constant depth improved the buoyancy control. The sled was also deflated to be slightly negative, with the three push divers using their own buoyancy to compensate. With Ron and Hugh holding each side of the broomhandle and steering the front end, Dad took the back of the sled and pushed. Staying at a constant depth mid-tunnel, they made excellent progress through the second sump. Here Hugh and Ron park the depleted sled on the roof half way through sump 2, [read more…]

Nov 052012
Seadragons under Flinders Pier

About the site Flinders Pier is a long, shallow dive out off the eastern side of the Mornington Peninsula. Because it’s on the opposite side of the Peninsula to Portsea, Rye and Mornington Piers it can be a good dive when the wind is blowing the wrong way. It’s also known for very reliable sightings of the weedy seadragon population that lives there. The pylons and under-pier area has kelp and seaweed, which turn to seagrass as you swim off the sides. You do have to watch out for fishing line, as it was busy up top with fishermen while I was there. About the dive My plan yesterday was to make some great shots of the seadragons, which was [read more…]

Nov 012012
Cave diving through history: Cocklebiddy Cave, 1982 (Part 1)

The 1982 Cocklebiddy trip had representatives from both West Australia and South Australia. With new techniques for combining tanks into a sled, the trip hoped to push past the end of the West Australian line in the second sump and see what lay beyond. Left to right: Hugh Morrison, Ron Allum, unsure, Keith Dekkers, Simon Jones in yellow, unsure. The 1982 trip was led by Hugh Morrison from West Australia. Dad, still based in South Australia, knew Hugh from his FAUI instructing and invited himself along as trip photographer. The other South Australian representative was Ron, who was keen to get back to Cocklebiddy and came as photographer’s assistant. Various bits of gear have been hung on the shrubbery to [read more…]