Scapa Flow 2011

Dive trip details

Dates: 31st July – 5th August

We are based in Stromness and once you get there, you will find the accommodation, dive boat within 100 yards of the ferry port. Its not that big a place. That might affect whether you want to put your car on the ferry etc… However we will need a couple of vehicles for sightseeing as Orkney is spectacular assuming I can drag any of you out of the pub!!

Radiant Queen

Its a long way. Its basically as far as the south of France and the roads beyond Glasgow make it seem every inch of that distance. It is possible to drive it in one day. I have driven up there spent two days there and driven back but it is 12 hours of driving. If you are driving and have the time then take the time and you’ll enjoy it much more plus not arrive absolutely shattered.

Train to Thurso is fine and dandy if you can meet someone like me who is driving up to hitch a ride (or get a bus) to one of the ferry ports for Orkney.

Another poss is flying…I will be there for two weeks and hence will be able to pick up people from Kirkwall airport which is the other end of the island. Flying I think would be London-Glasgow-Kirkwall unless there is a direct flight, but you could have the journey done in a couple of hours and a gin and tonic into the bargain. If people are keen on this I will be hire a trailer so we can put kit in it and I can tow up there.

What’s the diving like?

2 dives a day and Genuinely amazing. Battleship heaven and pretty clear water. It has a reputation as being a techy kind of heaven and that’s because it is. It can be deep and advanced diving however there was a lady on the boat last year who was doing single 12 litre tank 25 metre dives. Ultimately if the cruiser sits on the bottom at 30-35 metres and is 12-15m wide you can sitting on top of it at 15-20m. There are also shallower wrecks as well. If I can put it this way….If you want long deco dives where you spend a lot of bottom time at 40m you will have your chance. If you don’t want to see any deco you don’t have to. I went into deco twice last year and only for a couple of minutes or so. It is a question of what you feel comfortable with and not pushing those limits. Emily the skipper is an absolute legend who is a diver herself will be giving you excellent dive briefs with computer presentations and the like. She won’t put anyone in who is uncomfortable. She also cooks the best food and its even better when there are skinny blonde people aboard who can’t finish their food. I think I put on about three stone….:-)

Dive equipment and the like. As I said, I have seen Scapa done by a fairly new diver on a single 12 litre. However I would recommend a 15 litre tank and you might want to take a pony as well!!! In terms of grade, its not for me to say anything about that not least because I think its as important to be dived up before going then the badge. Ian is DO and its up to him to make any decisions regarding minimum kit or grade. I think depth wise BSAC Sports diver or Advanced PADI open water is the minimum for the big wrecks. Ocean Divers will be able to dive some of the wrecks but most are likely to be out of reach. The most important thing is to do a few warm up dives before going. The diving is brilliant, absolutely brilliant but it has to be well planned (ish) diving!! I am sure Minto will be glad to hear that navigation is not usually an issue…its kind of follow the battleship.

Nitrox, you may want to get your cylinders O2 cleaned, I certainly intend to be nitroxing it. You only need one tank/twinset as there is an on board compressor and different mixes available.

The boat is awesome and very cleverly set out…You have dry room and wet rooms and you can leave your kit all week on board.


Will be self catering and well within reach of pubs / decent(ish) restaurants