07-18-2016
Good morning Divers!!!

Begin Time: 9:01 am
Time: 43 min
Max Dept: 45ft
Temp: 62-72 F
Visibility: 12-15 feet
Conditions: Salt water, shore dive, high tide, good sized south swell waves, surge, current.
Dive Buddies: Max and Alan. Total 15.

There were 9 new people at the mall and another set of returning regulars. The weather was over cast. The previous week, the south swell diminished but started
to come back. The surf was manageable but at times some big waves hit the beach. Visibility was good - Laguna Beach normal during the summer time. Lots of life
on the reef.

Nick and I arrived after Rich and all the new people gathered at our meeting place. We got to know each other and with the conditions being not being optimal, we
decided to go to Crescent Bay and dive Deadman's Reef. Maybe we should rename the group from South Coast Divers to Deadman's Reef Divers since we mostly
dive there.

When we got to our favorite parking place, only half of the new people found out. We checked out the surf and saw a few big waves hit the beach, but there was
calm too. We decided to head out and give it try.

While swimming to the drop down point, I rolled over and took a look at the water. The visibility was pretty good. Or should I say normal for summer time in Laguna
Beach. We got to the drop down point and waited for a few more to join up. Once we were all together we dropped down.

There were 6 divers with me and the rest were with Rich. I didn't see Rich come by while we waited at the bottom so I started my group off to the reef. We were a
little too west so once I hit a reef, I swam east to find it. We came up to some cliffs and that was Deadman's Reef. I swam along side it and swam on to the other
side. I turned on the video camera and took some pictures. There were lots of CA sheep head fish. Big guys swimming around you checking you out and seeing
what you are doing. The Garibaldi were nesting and keeping guard of their nest. I got a video of a lobster in a crevice.

It was about time to head back and I started north. We were west of the pinnacles so I adjusted course and swam east and through the remaining pinnacles. We
swam along the inner reef and came upon Rich and Nick swimming back to shore. When we got closer, we saw a huge bat ray on the bottom. My camera was
turned off and it swam away before I could turn it on. We swam a little further and saw this same bat ray again. This time he swam faster and further away from us.

In about 20 feet of water, we ascended and swam back to shore on the surface. The surf was really picking up and it seemed a few 6 footer waves hit the beach.
We waited it out and when it was clear we got out without any incident. We waited for the rest of the group to get out the water and then we packed up and headed
to Husky Boy's for food and conversation. It was an ok dive, but it was closer to what we usually see in summer time.

Picture:
http://southcoastdivers.com/photos/DiveSites/CrescentBay_2016_07_16.jpg

video:
https://youtu.be/1wUVbKDCaVY

Diving!! DO IT!! Safely...

Rich Parker & Louis Umphenour
http://southcoastdivers.com