Diving a new site, possibly one that has not been dived before carries a great deal of excitement. Firstly, the dive begins well before one has even left home, let alone travelled the (in my case) usually considerable distance to the dive site.
Last week, my buddy and I dived in Loch Striven, a sea loch not that far from Glasgow and yet with a very pleasing feeling of remoteness. We did not find very many places to pull the van off the road and be able to get into the water, but we discovered a couple of very pleasant locations.
Entering the water, there is the thrill of the unknown- the charts give clues to the terrain and topology and, therefore, the species which may be seen. What will the visibility be like? Will I add a new species to my list?
In the case of Loch Striven, the dive was pleasant but did not reveal any new species. The highlight of the diving was the large number of very co-operative squat lobsters, hiding under every stone. A species which will usually withdraw into its hole as the camera approaches to a useful shooting distance, these were tolerant enough for me to approach very closely and try out some new techniques using a snoot on what is, for me, an oft-photographed species.