Wave Shape
Wave Shape

June Newsletter – action packed! Weymouth and Cyprus dives

Waves Shape

Wendy’s dive report:

This 4-day trip, organised by Alan B, ran from 24th May to 2nd June. I joined on Sunday on my 2nd UK dive trip.

Weather had a pivotal role in proceedings, but it all improved as the week went on. I would sum my experience as follows:



Good bits                                                                                                          

  • Getting in the water seeing stuff of course! The ledges outside Lulworth Cove were like flying over a garden.
  • First Nudibranch. They really are as fluorescent as their photos.
  • A spider crab the size of a football!
  • First conger eel.
  • Getting to know other club members better, having a beer and a laugh.
  • I dive in a semi-dry suit so water temperature is close to my heart. At about 12C I was ok.
  • Everyone’s help and co-operation: turning up on time, hauling kit, washing up.

Bad Bits

  • Sore fingertips caused by so much salt water.
  • Limited ability to dry off my kit before the next day’s diving.
  • Pea soup viz under Swanage pier.
  • Losing a fin, (twice!) fortunately retrieved by my buddies.
  • The snoring, such are the joys of sharing a caravan.



  • Seeing the amount of time and effort put into planning the dives; Joe and Alan, laptop open, working out wind and tide for the next day’s dive sites. I’d never given it any thought before.
  • Driving the RIB was great fun, whoooosh! And the ride back to Portland Harbour from Lulworth, into the wind with choppy waves, drenched in spray, rainbows in the wake, and bouncing around was a total blast (if somewhat hard on the knees and back)
  • How good looking the Dorset coastline is viewed from the sea.
  • Getting back into the RIB, and my great impersonation of a beached seal.
  • Zen moments on the shot line as my buddy meditated during the safety stop.


  • Controlling my nerves.
  • Controlling my buoyancy.
  • Controlling my breathing.

This has been a good trip for me, increasing my experience and confidence in the water, and a most enjoyable time all round. Thank you to all involved, and here’s to next time.



Scott Harris’s dive report

I recently took part in the club dive trip to Weymouth, as I went for the last part of the week so was very lucky as the weather was certainly better than the first part of the week. This was the first time that I had dived on the club RIBs, and I must say I certainly enjoyed the experience. The boats are quite compact so there is limited space, so going forward I need to reduce the amount of kit that I take.  The benefit of going on the RIBs is that you can plan the places you dive and when you want to do them, I went on the Farnes trip last year on a hard boat, but I preferred this one.

My plan was to dive three days but I had issues with my drysuit so I did not dive the second day and took my drysuit to O3 to have a look at it, they could not see anything wrong with the suit and it would need further investigation, but they did lend me a drysuit free of charge so that I could dive the following day, which was really good of them.

The visibility on the diving was good and traveling along the coastline was stunning with some spectacular cliffs and rock formations to look at along the way. The loading of the boats at the beginning and end of each day was a real team effort with getting the cylinders and gear on and off the boats but we were quite lucky as the place where we got refills was quite close.

The daily management of sorting out the dive sites and arranging the diving pairs especially given the different levels of experience was a major challenge so a big thank you to Alan for sorting that out.

I really enjoyed the trip and would recommend it to any new divers you get a lot of support from the other divers on board and each time you dive you gain more experience and get the chance to dive in some lovely locations.  A lot of work goes into organising these trips and having members in the club who will organize them and tow the boats. We are very lucky as a club that we have members who are prepared to do this for the benefit of us all.

Dave Hopps Cyprus reports

Day one: You will wish you were here!! Excellent.

An early morning start, we were at Dive-In by 0800, ready for the first brief and then off to the dive boat: beautiful sunshine and a very dry 40 degrees. Travel time to the dive site from the pier was about 10 minutes and 10 minutes later we were in the water. The surface temperature was about 24 but cooler as you went deeper. We are all in wetsuits and I don’t believe any of us felt cold.

Dive one was to swim around the top of the Zenobia which gave us a better idea of just how big this Ro-Ro ferry actually is. This dive lasted around 40 minutes and we went to a depth of 28-20m.  Second dive into the top hols full of tracks still held up by chains, most of them anyway. All sorts of fish including grouper, barracuda, needlefish, wrasse, and so on, more ankles tom arrow. Also lots of sponges and a black worm-like fish. Dive time was about 45-50 mins and to a depth of 30m

All finished by about 1400 so plenty of time to relax and top up or start the tan. Tomorrow we go deeper into the wreck.

Early start again, Dive centre by 08:00 in the water by 09:00

Day 2: Dived the Zenobia again with great viz and even better on the inside up to 30 metres.

MS Zenobia was a Swedish-built Challenger-class RO-RO ferry launched in 1979 that capsized and sank on her maiden voyage in the Mediterranean Sea, close to Larnaca, Cyprus, in June 1980.[3][4] She now rests on her port side in approximately 42 meters (138 ft) of water and was named by The Times, and many others, as one of the top ten wreck diving sites in the world.[4][5][6]

She arrived at Larnaca on 2 June 1980,[3] where a ballast problem had reoccurred, engineers discovered that the computerized pumping system was pumping excess water into the side ballast tanks due to a software error, making the list progressively worse.[2] On 4 June, Zenobia was towed out of Larnaca harbor to prevent her from becoming an obstruction should the worst happen[2] and was left at anchor roughly 1–1.5 miles (1.6–2.4 km) offshore.[2] On 5 June, with the ship listing at around 45° the captain dismissed the engineers and maintenance crew and requested permission to return the ship to Larnaca harbor. The requests were denied.[2]

At around 2:30am on 7 June 1980, Zenobia capsized and sank in Larnaca Bay at 34°53.5′N 33°39.1′E (1,500 m, 4,900 ft from the shore) to a depth of roughly 42 meters (138 ft),[2] taking her estimated £200 million worth of cargo with her.[2][7] There were no casualties in the disaster.

Dive 1 – We started the dive amidshíps again and entered around the dark patch in the above image. We went through a door hatch and into the wreck which opened out into a large open space with plenty of natural light, a torch was not unnecessary. We were in the accommodation area and mostly visible were the showers and toilets. There were signs of collapse but always plenty of room to avoid these areas. The dive continued along to the front of the ship and we exited just in front of the anchor winches at the bow. A quick look around here then along the starboard side to the obligatory safety stop at the ascent line amidships. Plenty of fish life and a good dive, 28m for 48 min on Nitrox 28%.

Dive 2 – After a quick stop ashore for coffee we set off for the wreck again, this time a deeper penetration was planned. We entered via the pilot’s boarding hatch which was a tiny bit of a squeeze and snaked around to enter the 2nd cargo hold. This was a bit more of a tight entry but we swam into again a reasonably large area which was completely dark so torches were absolutely necessary. There were plenty of the cargo (lorries) and their contents visible but most had fallen to the floor (port side). Most recognisable bits were the lorry chassis and wheels plus bits of cargo. There was a “forklift truck” at the turning point before we traced our way back to the entrance exiting to shoals of fish. We then paid a quick visit to the upper stern area before swimming to the midships line for the ascent. 31m for 49 mins on Nitrox 28%

The other group did an external look around for their first dive as 2 iDivers hadn’t dived yesterday. Their second dive was as our first dive.

So, a great day diving with plenty of help with the kit from the Dive In crew. They carried, loaded, and unloaded all our heavy kit, we only carried dive computers and torches. Our guide gave a thorough briefing and was attentive underwater. All dives are planned as non-deco with a safety stop at the end of a slow ascent. If you’re into wreck diving this site is a must to do.

Mel’s dive report

Day 3: It was another beautiful sunny day in Cyprus, we geared up and headed out to the Zenobia wreck site and were immediately greeted by a turtle on the surface.

Dive 1: We went in three groups, group 1 was working on depth progression dives and successfully got one of our members (Wendy) comfortably down to 25 meters while exploring the outside of the wreck. Group 2 went off to explore the upper cargo deck and Group 3 visited the captain’s quarters down to 30 meters where you can see toilets (with toilet brush), mirrors, and sinks still ready to use albeit a little flooded hehe.

All three groups had amazing dives with a minimum water temperature of 21C but averaged a nice toasty 23C.

Dive 2: We went in 2 groups, one large and one smaller group for depth progression. The smaller group successfully reached 30 meters in a safe and comfortable dive seeing lionfish and interesting parts of the outside of the wreck. The larger group headed to the pitch-black middle cargo hold. The cargo hold is full of trucks piled on top of each other as they slid when the boat went down. Many still had windscreens in place and you could see the cargo that they were carrying. The group made their way through the trucks with torches as the only light source to find the only car on the wreck, which was the captain’s. The Max depth was about 33 meters. The group exited the wreck back into the light and beautiful bright blue water. A truly amazing dive.

Back on the boat, we headed to the shore, completing another fabulous day’s diving in Cyprus.

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