Capernwray Club Weekend
Capernwray Jackdaw Quarry is situated around 7 miles from Morcambe Bay on the edge of the Lake District, and is renowned for its clear visibility and population of sturgeon, trout and carp. It was an obvious choice when the club decided to head out for our Northern Weekender Club Outing. It was also the ideal opportunity to finish off one of our Open Water students, 10 year old Lily Owen, and give a number of the group the chance to head into Liverpool for the unique Scuba Escapes experience on Day 2.
The weekend began for most of us on the Friday, trying to beat the rush hour afternoon traffic to arrive at our accommodation in time for our evening meal. After some substantial Northern grub, a few drinks, a good nights sleep, and a bacon butty breakfast, we all arrived at Capernwray, ready for our first day's diving. Initial signs weren't promising - long queue to get in, forecast for rain and the usually superb viz was reported as murky! However once through he gate, the carpark wasn't as rammed as the queue indicated, and buoyed with optimism we set about the days diving business.
Whilst most of the guys headed off for their pleasure dives, Instructors Jon Lyall and Alison Davies set about kitting up and briefing Lily for her first two open water dives. At 10 years old, Lily is a feisty female, having completed her Seal Team before starting her Junior Open Water. Dad Nick, who is the perfect Scuba Dad, started his Open Water course so Lily would have someone to talk to about her Seal Team! So started a passion for them both. Nick is now Advanced Open Water and Dry Suit, while this weekend was the perfect opportunity to qualify Lily. Dive 1 was a a great success except for a pesky pair of gloves which proved too big. This lead us to a decision to abandon Lily's gloves for dive 2. In hindsight this wasn't the wisest move as while feeding the fish a trout decided to take a chunk out of Lily's hand! With blood drawn, only a very large piece of cake could compensate! Day 2 in the water done, it was left to jump start Darren's car with it's flat battery, before everyone headed to the Brewers Fayre at the Premier Inn Lancaster for some well earned drink and food!
Sunday dawned, and whilst a number of the group headed off to Liverpool (see our Scuba Escapes blog), the remainder reconvened at Caperwray. Her fear of the fish put aside, Lily headed into the water for dives 3 and 4, and what a little star she was. Dive 3 proceeded without a hitch and it was an absolute joy on Dive 4 to watch Nick take his first underwater selfie with Lily! This is what being an Instructor is all about! To be able to introduce people to the beauty of the underwater world is a real privilege and both Jon Lyall and I were so made up to be part of this moment. Time for a burger, coffee, cake and celebration before we headed off home on our three hour journey to Northampton. Capernwray had delivered as usual and we look forward to returning in the near future!