September on Lundy

A dive trip to Lundy is always one of the highlights of the year, but this one was a bit special.

On our arrival in Illfracombe, we stayed at the Dilkhusa Grand Hotel instead of the backpackers hostel, with lovely hot showers and comfy beds.

At 9am on Saturday morning we loaded the Obsesssion 2 with all of our dive kit and parked our cars in the Marine car park. The weather forecast for the weekend was changeable and possibly a bit windy. Which made wreck diving out of the question. The crossing was no exception and quite lumpy, thank goodness for Stugeron (other travel sickness tablets are available).

As the sea state made unloading kit a bit tricky on arrival, we decided to go diving. Our first check dive was in Gannets bay, a sheltered cove with pretty flat water. The seals were all sun bathing on the rocks as the sea was still low, but as the tide came in and covered the lower rocks, the seals came to join us in the water.

The seals on Lundy are some of the most curious and friendly in the UK and I was lucky to be buddied with our resident seal magnet, Thaedra Thruston who only needs to enter the bay to be surrounded by seals vying for her affection. It was an incredible experience.

After our second dive we headed back to the jetty to off load all of our gear and stagger up the steep hill to our accommodation.

There comes a time in every Lundy divers life when the cold, damp, windy camp site needs to be exchanged for a palatial regency residence such as Millcombe house. Our rooms were large and quiet, lounges had squishy sofas and the massive kitchen suitable for our master chef…Rob…More about him later!

In the evening we perambulated up to the pub for sustenance and of coarse non alcoholic beverages (yeah, like anyone’s going to belive that – Ed).

Sunday was Angie’s birthday and after opening cards and breakfast we headed down to the boat for a days diving. We started off at Pete’s Pinnacle and the second dive back in Gannets bay. During this dive we were accompanied by 2 very young and extremely cute pups along with some of their older brothers and sisters.

The evening was a gastronomic delight. While we were all getting a bit moist in the drink, Rob was slaving over a hot stove preparing multiple dishes for Angie’s birthday supper. We congregated around a huge table in the dining room for 3 different curries followed by pineapple and mango crumble with rum and ginger. Then in to the lounge for a game of cards against humanity and more “non alcoholic libations”.

On Monday morning we were greeted with clear blue skies and perfect conditions for an expedition around the island. Sticking to the narrow lower paths in the east we were protected from the wind, but we could see the white horses galloping over the waves of the Bristol Channel. It’s a good job that we weren’t diving today.

Following our trek, we retired to the Marisco Tavern where we managed to purloin the large table upstairs to consume our evening meals, followed by a gentle walk back to the house, stargazing under clear skies.

Tuesday morning saw a change in the weather and even in Gannets Bay, the visibility under the water took a turn for the worse. We still managed two dives in Gannets bay, then Andy the skipper made a dash for the mainland surfing the waves on the rising tide.

We are very fortunate to have such a close knit diving club and everybody chipped in to make this a dive trip to remember and hopefully a wonderful birthday weekend for Angie.

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