It's about diving. And cats.

Me diving

Thursday, January 12, 2012

2012 Calendar Giveaway

Since last year's calendar giveaway was a smashing success, I'm doing it again this year!  Here's a thumbnail of the photos in this year's calendar:

Some might say it's too cave heavy, and others will say it's too octopus heavy.  Well, if you don't like it, don't enter to win.  I'm pretty happy with how the calendar turned out, considering that when I thought back over the year, it didn't seem like it was exactly an epic year for diving.  Or for photography.  For various reasons, far too many of my posts in the past year have been photo-less.  I told Rob that my new year's resolution is to have more pictures on my blog.  Sadly that is not really within my control, but maybe that will inspire/pressure Rob.

So, if you want a shot at the calendar, leave a comment by Tuesday, January 17 at 11:59 pm (Pacific time) saying what the coolest dive you did last year was.  Mine was definitely my birthday dive at Birthday Wall.  Close seconds would have to be the two other dives I did at that site, and the best octopus encounter ever.

Once again this year, I decided to do some data crunching for the past year (and once again I was left wondering why the heck I did it in Excel, instead of a relational database).  I "only" did 88 dives this year, which is much lower than last year, but I think I should get extra credit for those 3 or 4 hour cave dives :)  I also didn't include any dives in classes or assisting with classes, which by my count took another 20 days.

This year I dove with 15 distinct dive buddies, also down quite a bit from last year.  I guess I'm becoming a dive snob.  The top 5 buddies by dive count has changed a bit, but no surprises here:


I guess that's technically 6, but there was a tie for 5th.  But if I counted all those C2 class dives, Antonio clearly would have kicked Ted's butt.

And the numbers by certification are:


The count for rec dives might seem surprisingly high, but that's just because I haven't posted my Fiji trip report yet.  It's coming soon!

Happy New Year!


KHBride said...

I've actually never dived :( But I LOVE your pics and reading about your dives

khbride at yahoo dot com

Kees said...

That's a pretty sweet calendar!

I think my favorite dive this year was on the Warren Car, a tiny wreck surrounded by some cool topography.

Susie's Foster Mom said...

I love Rob's pics. Shhhhh, don't tell Larry! My favorite dive of 2011 was my 12/23 dive at Yankee Pt, because I saw my first rat fish. :-) Happy New Year!

Susie's Foster Mom said...

Shoot, it tagged my comment with an old name from my old dog blog, I'll have to figure out how to fix that some day. Susie's foster mom = Carol Cohn.

Mark Lloyd said...

My best dive was right at the end of 2011. The weather was perfect, nice and sunny as we made our way out of the bay. Jim indicated we could do Lunaticos Annex which to be honest I can’t recall doing. The ball was dropped in a canyon between two structures. The canyon ran North to South, the South end being the deeper area. The depth at the bottom of the canyon was about 170. Following the canyon South we descended to about 190 where we found a nice vase sponge with hundreds of Elephant Ear sponges all over the walls around us. We scootered East around a small pinnacle then headed West past a number of other pinnacles. There were at least 5 or 6 other large vase sponges in this area with hydrocoral and more elephant ear sponges. With the great vis we scootered to the end of the reef, turned around and followed our way back to the original canyon. Once back to there we headed North, dropped down on the other side and scootered East where we poked our heads into a small cave. I couldn’t see the end of it so we turned around, headed West, again encountering lots of sponges, schools of young rockfish, and a few Ling Cod. We ascended to the 150′ level, spent a bit of time checking out the structure, passing a few of other dive teams then shot the bag. The current was virtually non existent and the shot line was visible for much of the deco as were some of the others on deco. Tons of cool looking jellies in the water to keep our interest and after we surfaced we dove into the chicken and brownies. On the way back in a humpback entertained us with about 5 or 6 huge breaches.. fantastic! Sometimes the dives we do and how good they are are very personal with various opinions on how good it was. There was no doubt from anyone on how good this was. The combination of weather, site, and visibility made this one the best dives ever.

gecko1 said...

Well - I already have a calendar so I'll recuse myself from the contest but I do have a favorite dive to share.

"Susan's Hooters", Inian Island, Alaska. Dive buddy: Dave Chamberlin (Welcome Back Dave!)

Last dive of our trip there. The previous dive had been something of an embarrassing bust but the weather was gorgeous and the water was clear blue as we jumped in. The first half of the dive was very relaxing and we just took in the amazing scenery - soft corals, finger sponges, gorgonians, bull kelp, etc. Near the end of the dive we noticed some commotion and lots of strobe activity. As we wandered over we immediately found ourselves in a big group of Steller Sea Lions which were playing with the rest of the divers. We spent the next 25 minutes or so with as interactive a bunch of pinnipeds as you're ever likely to find. Great stuff, and then as we ascended we found ourselves surrounded by a huge school of shiny baitfish. Quite a way to end a trip.

Except that it wasn't over yet. The best part was the skiff ride back to the boat. Just after we pulled away from the site a small humpback whale breached right next to us. And again, and again, about 13 or 14 more times before it swam into to shore where it began playing with the kelp like a kitten with a ball of string. Totally amazing. I love Alaska.


Doug said...
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Doug said...

It's a tie for me between the dive Mark Lloyd is referring to and Chimneys in Namena Reserve, Fiji.

The first was a day of spectacular conditions at Lunaticos Annex and humpback sightings at the surface while the second was a day of some of the most amazing collection of color and life I've been privileged to see in one spot under water.

Also on both I have to give credit to amazing dive buddies which enriched the experience.

Oh and being the topography junkie that I am, I should probably give some credit to the topography of these sites which I'm sure influenced my overall enjoyment.

Katie said...

I love the pictures! They are so beautiful and thanks so much for sharing them with us.

I have more of a favorite dive week then a favorite dive since Neil surprised me with a 3-day trip to Catalina aboard the Vision and then 3 more days in San Diego where we dived the Yukon and La Jolla Shores. It was so different then my usual dives in Monterey and so beautiful.

Unknown said...

My favorite dive this year was just a few months ago. The water was so clear that you could see the rails on the Escapade for 100 feet. I can't remember the last time I saw the water like that. We had schools of rockfish and at the end of the dive, the most massive school of marching Jellies I have ever seen. I guess I need to dive more though because some people have had viz like that tons of time. For me, it was losing my 100 ft vizibility card day.