Campbell River Isn't Just for Salmon Fishing.
by Jack Connick
On the weekend of October 7th, 2000 eleven Marker Buoy divers took the long trek
up to Campbell River to eat at Mike and Darlene Richmond's new lodge. That's
right, we just came for the food; the world-class diving was just to get
Mike out of the house so Darlene could cook us amazing meals (at least
according to Paul).
Located on Quadra Island, just across from Campbell River the lodge is a
diver's paradise with five bedrooms and a nice living room located on the
lower floor of Mike's new house (he used to run Abyssal Diving). There's
also a nice large hot tub, perfect for socializing in, located just outside
an equipment/compressor room with plenty of room for suit storage.
Everything is homemade, even the wood he used is mostly hand-felled and
milled. To say nothing about the meals.
We dove (and ate), dove (and ate) for two and a half days, in great
conditions with 50+ foot viz. on many of the dives. Although Discovery
Passage has some of the highest currents in the world, we had long slacks
with easy hour-long dives on most of the sites. Mike has an amazing
knowledge of the area, having discovered many of the sites and has worked to
protect them for many years. His boat is 26', aluminum and customized with
many nice features for divers, such good ladders for re-boarding.
We made five dives including; the HMCS Columbia (surrounded by swimming
scallops); Seymore Narrows (my favorite with technicolor anemones and
sponges amongst a beautiful kelp forest - saw an eight-inch lemon-peel
nudibranch!); the towering wall of Copper Cliffs (tube worms galore);
Richmond Reef; and a crowd-pleaser; Row & Be Damned (I saw cloud sponges at
And then there was the food; Darlene and Mike totally spoiled us; dinner
Saturday featured fresh, BBQ'd salmon and fresh shrimp, several veggies,
salad, rolls, etc. topped by fresh baked apple/boysenberry pie for dessert.
We'd come in from diving, drop our gear, and stuff ourselves silly. No one
wanted to go home!
It'll take until April (when I run another trip up there) to work off the
fantastic meals we ate! Thanks to all who came along, and especially to Mike
and Darlene for showing us such a good time!
by Jack Connick
Originally appearing in "The Buoy Tender", the newsleter for the Marker Buoy Dive Club - Seattle
photos and story © 2000