Visibility varied quite a bit on this dive, but averaged out to around 6 to 7 metres. Lots of fish in the growth near the dive platform, and there was a swarm of Leatherjackets, Wrasse, and Moonlighters trying to pull the body of a squid away from a crab further out along the pier. We spotted several Barber Perches, a Castelnau's Wrasse, a Short-tailed Ceratasoma, a few juvenile Old Wives, and a couple of Sweep and Scalyfins. Although there were supposed to be lots of Seahorses around, we only saw one adult, and no young at all. We went across to the Eivion, and were surprised to see how much of the hull was visible above the sand on the pier side of the wreck. Normally this seems to be be well bedded into the sand, but this time it was much more exposed.

Part of the reason for this dive was to try out Kirsty's new 7 litre cylinder. At around 3 kg lighter than her 10.5 litre cylinder, it is easier to carry. It looks like she will need to use either the same or slightly more weight, but she will still end up being perhaps 2.5 kg lighter overall, so that's a good result. Whilst we were trying out different weights, I gave Kirsty a half-kilo weight of mine, and I was still neutral, so it looks like I can take this oput of my weight pocket as well.

About 9 pm, incoming SS Penola ( 500 tons) struck and ran down City of Launceston which began to settle almost immediately. Passengers and crew transferred with difficulty to Penola. Sunken vessel valued at about 17,000 pounds - not insured. Sold by auction to Barrett, engineer of City of Launceston, who sold to a syndicate but salvage attempts eventually abandoned. Victorian Steam Navigation Board Inquiry held City of Launceston to blame for accident. Two separate Supreme Court actions by the respective owners for damages found in favour of the plaintiff in each case! An appeal by the aggrieved owner of the Penola for a non suit or a new trial was ultimately refused. Eleutheria, lighter, exhibited light at wreck site until it too sank. City of Launceston was the first shipwreck to be declared an Historic Shipwreck under new Victorian legislation. Built for the Melbourne to Launceston Bass Strait run, it was a regular trader across Bass Strait. - See more at: http://vhd.heritagecouncil.vic.gov.au/shipwrecks/124#sthash.aPC0R645.dpuf

About 9 pm, incoming SS Penola ( 500 tons) struck and ran down City of Launceston which began to settle almost immediately. Passengers and crew transferred with difficulty to Penola. Sunken vessel valued at about 17,000 pounds - not insured. Sold by auction to Barrett, engineer of City of Launceston, who sold to a syndicate but salvage attempts eventually abandoned. Victorian Steam Navigation Board Inquiry held City of Launceston to blame for accident. Two separate Supreme Court actions by the respective owners for damages found in favour of the plaintiff in each case! An appeal by the aggrieved owner of the Penola for a non suit or a new trial was ultimately refused. Eleutheria, lighter, exhibited light at wreck site until it too sank. City of Launceston was the first shipwreck to be declared an Historic Shipwreck under new Victorian legislation. Built for the Melbourne to Launceston Bass Strait run, it was a regular trader across Bass Strait. - See more at: http://vhd.heritagecouncil.vic.gov.au/shipwrecks/124#sthash.aPC0R645.dpuf

Divers: Kirsty Batchelor, Peter Batchelor

Weather/Sea: Calm. Outgoing tide, so there was a reasonable current flowing through the pier.
Visibility: 6-7 metres.
Water temperature: 16°C.
Maximum depth: 5.7 metres.
Time of entry: 09:15
Duration: 85 minutes.

 

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