Perhaps “Pea Soup” is a bit of an extreme description of the visibility at Porteau today, as I’ve seen worse in some deep mountain lakes, but after a long surface swim Josh and I dropped down on the Granthal to enjoy a nice dive with only 5-10 feet of visibility with plenty of particulates in the water. (This cleared up to a solid 10 feet of visibility below 50 feet or so.) It looks like the spring algae bloom has arrived.
Regardless of the visibility, we had a couple of great dives, with plenty of things to see. Some of the highlights included a huge number of decorator crabs, both Longhorn and Graceful. Plenty of nudibranch and other critters made appearances, including many Lingcod (some guarding egg masses). It never ceases to amaze me just how much life you can spot in the “muck” if you slow down and look carefully. Even on days with poor visibility, there is a lot to see.
Due to the large amount of particulates in the water, I struggled with backscatter on any of the larger subjects (such as the Lingcod) or subjects where I tried to get black background. (In retrospect I should have adjusted the aperture to blur the background and try to hide the backscatter). I think the photos turned out pretty well. Try to spot the individual limbs on the very well camouflaged Graceful Decorators!
It’s been a great month for diving so far, hopefully I can squeeze in yet another couple of dive days before the month’s end….
See all the photos below: