Ash Island Barge
What a fabulous day! Seriously, some days are good, some are great, today? FABULOUS. We drove over the border and joined in on a 1400 dive with the Thousand Island Pleasure Diving, a boat company that runs dive boats on the St. Lawrence from Caigers. With all of our new gear ready to go out, we joined up with the boat and found a group of 5 other gentleman from Toronto, York Region Scuba group, already loading up their equipment as well.
The ride out to the first dive site was filled with equipment checks, attaching our BCD (Buoyency Control Device) to the tanks that we had picked up from the Dive Tech shop. And of course the fun dance of sliding into a full 7mm wetsuit, complete with boots, gloves, and hood (well gloves and hood for me – DH is a polar bear). I say sliding and its more like trying to shove your body into a full body ‘er… ummm – condom. It’s a real fun time watching others, but a pain in the ass doing it yourself, the hood especially. I think I lost a thousand strands of hair pulling it off.
Our first drive would be a drift dive along the right side of Ash Island, our first drift dive. From head to to looking like a baby seal with pink fins, I stepped off of the back of the boat and went in. Expecting my normal panic to settle in I was happy to find there was little to adjust or become relaxed with and as soon as DH and I were set we began to release the air from our BCD and submerge. He kept eye contact with me and watched for me to struggle, I had to keep giving him the OK sign to let him know I was actually settling in! The water temperature an initial shock to the seams of my suit didn’t seem to effect us either as our body heat warmed the small streams of water caught between our skin and suit as we moved.
River dives are way different, the green water reflections create a more “Swamp Monster” view and there are no colorful fish to dazzle your view. But there are hidden treasures as you float, the shells, barnacles on the rocks at the base of the island, small fish dart about the shadows, and off to the right. What was that? The bow a sunken barge appeared as a shadow, becoming clearer as we came in line with it. Our first sunken ship! I was so excited as DH and I exchanged looks and pointed. All to soon the 24 minutes of our dive, 112 feet the max depth and 62 degree water adventure came to an end. We came up right where we were supposed to at the end of the peninsula, our fellow divers and boat a welcome sight.