Sund Rock, 8-21-08

Tell us your tale of coming nose-to-nose with a 6 gill [--this big--], or about your vacation to turquoise warm waters. Share your adventures here!
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John Rawlings
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Re: Sund Rock, 8-21-08

Post by John Rawlings » Fri Aug 22, 2008 8:07 am

Tom, this is a report that deserves a "double WOOT"!

What a great selection of photos! I especially enjoyed the Flabellina "taking a bow" and the Archidoris with the shrimp. Also, it's always exciting when you are able to find a GPO in a den with eggs!

That brings to mind a question - has anyone out there on NWDC ever seen a Red Octopus with eggs? I know that I sure haven't! :dontknow:

- John
“Don’t pick a fight with an old man. If he is too old to fight, he’ll just kill you.”

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spatman
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Re: Sund Rock, 8-21-08

Post by spatman » Fri Aug 22, 2008 7:32 am

good to hear your trip reports again, tom! your pics are outstanding as usual. hope you have more time for more diving and more reports soon. keep 'em coming!
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LCF
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Re: Sund Rock, 8-21-08

Post by LCF » Thu Aug 21, 2008 10:35 pm

Great photographs, and I love the ones that give you scale on those huge nudibranchs!
"Sometimes, when your world is going sideways, the second best thing to everything working out right, is knowing you are loved..." ljjames

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Tom Nic
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Sund Rock, 8-21-08

Post by Tom Nic » Thu Aug 21, 2008 8:55 pm

Warning! I've been rediculously busy, and it's been awhile since I've posted much, let alone uploaded pics, so this is kind of a long post! Some pictures from the dive are here

It had been WAY too long since we had visited Sund Rock, so Bassman, Bnboly, and I set out for a couple of dives. We called and made arrangements for the shop to leave the keys in the box outside, and at 8 AM were picking them up and heading for the dive site. We drove through steady rain all the way there, then as we arrived in Hoodsport the clouds opened up and the sun came out! We set up the canopy that we brought just in case, but as it turned out the weather was great all day.

The clear water in the shallows was encouraging, but having been fooled before I didn't let myself get too excited. However, as we dropped on the North Wall it was easy to see that this was going to be one of those gorgeous viz days. Viz was 25', sometimes more, sometimes a little less (particularly below 70 fsw), and I was woohooing into my regulator. I LOVE Sund when you can see more than 10'!!

The critters were out in force! We immediately ran into a Grunt Sculpin, and there were a bunch of Flabellina triophina as well - some pretty good sized ones, too! As Bill and I snapped merrily away with our Casio's Keith started counting the dozens of Flabellinas and was muttering something into his regulator along the lines of "Now, just WHY did I agree to dive with TWO photographers?!?! Come on guys, we're two minutes into this dive and do you see how many of them there are? We're going to spend the whole dive in 10 sq. ft!?!" - Or at least that's what it seemed to me...

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This Flabellina triophina seems to be taking a bow!

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We continued to run into different critters - the usual suspended Rockfish and a couple of Octos. I saw more Alabaster Nudis on this dive than I've seen here lately. And I actually managed to catch a couple of the wily tube worms before they did their disappearing act!

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What a great day, and it was only dive #1!! Keith caught a stray jelly tentacle on the lip, and despite Bill's offer to "treat" the wound he chose vinegar and anti-sting medication and was as good as new in no time. After a relaxed one hour surface interval (of which I spent 10 minutes eating blackberries!) we geared up for dive #2 and headed for the South Wall.

The schools of Black Rockfish were huge, and there were a good number of Yellowtail Rockfish among them as well, and of course the usual humoungous Coppers and the occasional Vermillion. I saw one big old rockfish that has a split dorsal from an old injury, the 2nd or 3rd year I've seen it.

There were a few HUGE Nudi's... 10 - 14 inches long, and one that had an egg mass so large it looked like a pillow case. I think they were Archidoris ohdneri, one pure white and the other two pure yellow, though I'm not 100% sure.

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And of course the usual wolfies were there, as well as a few octopus. We were lucky to find one old girl on eggs, the first time I've had the privilege of seeing that in person and not in pictures.

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I found this Dendronotus rufus tucked up under a rock, and Bill found a Dendronotus iris that I missed.

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About 3/4 of the way through the dive I realized that my dry suit inflator valve was stuck slightly open. I was having to dump air every few seconds, and even though I was dealing with it I finally got it through my thick head that this wasn't "normal". I just disconnected my dry suit inflator and VOILA! I'm neutrally buoyant again!

Thanks Keith and Bill for two great dives, and if you endured to the end, thanks to you for reading this report! Some pictures from the dive are here
More Pics Than You Have Time To Look AT
"Anyone who thinks this place is over moderated is bat-crazy anarchist." -Ben, Airsix
"Warning: No dive masters are going to be there, Just a bunch of old fat guys taking pictures of fish." -Bassman

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