As the two explorers descend the bow shot line the huge structure of the SMS Dresden comes into view. She is laying on her port side between 25 – 38m as she is resting on a mound. Emily suggested a dive on her bow as our first dive ‘to get our eye in’ ready for the battleships and to come back later in the week to spank her pert back side – a very shapely stern that hasn’t sagged with age!
We search out the crest on her bow and see one of her guns. As well as plenty of twisted metal there is lots of life with plumose anemones, dead mans fingers, all sorts of star fish and crabs. No deco time is running low so back to the line to ascend for lunch!
Spag Bog with lashings of cheese swiftly followed by warm carrot cake! Yum!
After lunch we rearrange our weight, drop a couple of kilos and check out the neck seal improvised repair – a knife strap. After another thorough briefing the 3 explorers were ready to dive again…. It would be the SMS Karlsruhe another light cruiser weighing in at a mighty 5,400 tons and 112m in length. She has a lot of damage as a result of being blasted for salvage. Her build quality was better than the Dresden so more has been salvaged causing the collapse of some of her structure.
1,2,3….. Would the neck seal hold…… YES…. You Beauty!
We moved forward past the 2 large winches and down to the bow which was resplendent in plumose anemones; simply wonderful. A snoozing scallop is disturbed and entertains us with its comic dance. We then move back toward the 2 forward facing 5.9 inch guns. These look magnificent in the excellent 8m + viz and we are amazed to find a crab using one of the gun muzzles as its home. We then explore the conning tower and bridge area before ascending the shot line at a leisurely pace. A perfect end to our first day……
As we motor home the boat is filled with excited chatter as everyone swaps stories about what they encountered below and how they feel the week will progress.
Inevitably there have been a few minor kit issues so Emily explains the overnight suit repair service offered by Ben at Scapa Scuba. As soon as we dock, we are off to see if our suits can be worked on overnight and returned to the boat ready for day 2