Monday, April 23, 2007

Kingston Nightlife is abundant...

Despite an appalling lead-in to the event, with thunder, lightning and lashing rain, the night dive that four of us completed tonight was a serene and memorable experience. Entering the water just before 9pm, to the accompaniment of the booming fog horn on the Wolfe Island Ferry, Dianne, Joan, Dominique and I discovered that there is much more nocturnal life in the Lake right now than daytime dives would lead us to believe.

Immediately we submerged, several Perch were obviously evident. This species proved to be very numerous across the range of depths encountered on a trip out to the barge and back. Some large, but very sluggish Mudpuppies were also spotted - and a couple of pretty large Bass. Dominique believes that he had a close encounter with a Muskie in the basin of the Henry as he prepared to exit.

With three HID lights between four divers (and the fourth, weaker light), illumination wasn't an issue. Visibility, despite the rain and squalls that had swept through the area just hours before, was about 25 feet. The best news of all is that the water temperature clearly appears to be on the rise, with 38F (3C) recorded out at 40 feet. Air temperature, which had dropped steadily throughout the evening, was just 11C (52F).

The divers were most appreciative of a surface presence provided by Malcolm and Steve, who provided practical as well as moral support. Regrettably, the conditions precluded any successful photography to mark this occasion. Next time....

4 comments:

Jim Dunfield said...

You folks are deadicated beyond belief. I was sure that it was going to be cancelled looking out my office window last evening. Oh ya gotta the love exam season. Soon I will be able to join you.
Jim

MikeH said...

Jim - dedication doesn't enter into it. By the time we came to dive, the conditions were really calm - unnaturally so in the clinging, thick fog.

When you have the students off your hands, we'll be sure to reserve a place for you on the dive roster.

SteveC said...

Does anyone have any suggestion about taking night pictures in open space with a simple digital camera? The camera did not seem to be able to focus and the images were black with gray areas evenly spread out. Maybe divers should wear some colour?

MikeH said...

Steve - focus may be an issue for some cameras. Many have auxiliary focus lights (often IR and therefore invisible) that operate at night. Sometimes these have to be selected deliberately in the menu. They're rarely ON by default. If the camera doesn't have a night-time focus feature, the answer can be to carry a little pocket flashlight and play it on the object that you wish to be the focus spot. Give it a shot in the yard some night...