Early in the season, I had been told that the best diving in Lake Champlain occurred after October. I am inclined to agree with that assessment.
I believe that the cold water begins to kill off the layer of algae that grows down to around 20 feet deep below the surface. Once that algae layer is gone, the visibility increases exponentially. At the beginning of the summer, a dive with “good” visibility had around 6 to 10 feet of vis. Now, I’m noticing 30-40 feet of visibility! In addition to the cold water killing off the algae, there being less water traffic on the lake stirs up less sediment from the bottom, aiding in the increase of visibility.
I have done somewhere near 70 dives in this lake this summer, and have enjoyed every dive! As the saying goes, “There is never a bad dive!”
Today, I had the occasion to do the Friday dives with Gordon and Matt. We met at the dive shop at around 9AM and were going to go to Malletts Bay and dive the old brickyard. Jonathan informed us that site was more of a boat dive, and that we should plan on someplace else. We went over to Perkin’s Pier.
At Perkin’s, we went out to the oil dolphin, and swam around that, then over to (and under) the Spirit Of Ethan Allen II. The propwash near that boat is amazing! The depth increases about 8 feet near where that boat’s prop is.
We finished the dive by going to our point of entry, and coming out of the water. The water temperature for this dive was around 48 degrees. Our max depth for this dive was 23 feet. I started the dive with 2800PSI and ended the dive with around 1800PSI with a total bottom time of around 38 minutes.
From there, we walked over to the boat launch, and did a quick 5 minute dive there. We found a shopping cart, and nothing else notable.
I had an obligation, so I left the two of them to do another dive, while I went to a meeting that I had to attend. After the meeting, the sun was out, and the air temperature was around 51, so I called Gordon and talked him into another dive. We decided to go to Thompsons Point down in Charlotte.
We met down there, and assembled our gear, then made our entry. We dove to around 73 feet deep, and hung out, looking for the pink flamingos. The water temperature there was around 50 degrees on the surface, and dipped down to 46 at depth. We dove here for around 39 minutes. At the beginning of this dive I had around 3000PSI, and came out with 1800PSI. I did both dives with around 15 pounds of weights with Gordon’s green aluminium 80CC tank.
The visibility at Thompson’s wasn’t as good as up in Burlington Harbor. I’m not sure the reason. There are some huge fish hanging out at Thompsons. For two weeks in a row I have seen 18-25 inch bass down there.
Today was Matt’s last dive of the season. I’m thinking there is still two more weeks for me to dive. I’m planning on going until the water temperature is in the upper 30’s.