Dive 85

Gouliot Caves, Sark to 7.1 m/23 ft

Having missed three dives because my ears wouldn't clear it was with considerable relief that my right ear gently equalised as I pulled myself down rocks at the mouth of this cave. Swam into the cave and then forked right. Our torches picked out jewel anemones and Plumose anemones. The current picked up and we left the cave into sunlit water. The current dragged us away from the rocks and we had to swim down and haul ourselves over rocks against the flow. I got extremely out of breath and was glad of my 15 litre cylinder. We went back into another cave where again I was fighting against the current a bit and dumping all my air to stay on the pebbly bottom to avoid being picked up by the current.

We ended up swimming out of the cave system and over kelp. Mac spotted the rest of the group's fins. They were all on top of a barnacle-covered rock. We surfaced and clung to the rock for a few minutes chatting in the sun. I tried to scramble onto the rock, but didn't want to rip my gear to shreds, so waited in the water. The boat came round to get us. We had ended up on the wrong side of Gouliot rocks because the current had turned.

A combination of strong currents, caves and shallow depth causing buoyancy difficulties made this one of my most challenging dives yet.

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