An introduction to Diving Stoney Cove, the clubs most popular local inland site. Stoney Cove is one of the two ‘local’ dive sites regularly used by the St Ives Sub-Aqua Club for diver training and general diving.
Stoney Cove has good general services. These include;
- A shop
- Equipment Servicing
- Equipment Hire
- Compressor (Filling Station)
- Nitrox and Oxygen
- Changing Facilities & Showers
- Hot Food
- Pub with a restaurant
- Rescue and First Aid Facilities
- Things to see and explore (in the quarry)
Stoney Cove is a member’s only facility, with has its own local rules and regulation.
There is an entrance fee. Day membership can be purchased on the day.
Day membership is expensive. It is sensible to join the diverlog scheme . This offers reduced entry fee’s, and the ability to pre-book car park spaces.
For those undergoing training (OD or SD), we recommend that you join the diverlog scheme.
There is a large amount of parking at Stoney Cove. The lower Car Park, closest to the water, does fill up quickly. There are two other car parks, which involve a walk to the water!
FINDING STONEY COVE
See the attached map.
USING THE SITE
There is a ‘divers hatch’ selling hot drinks, bacon, sausage, egg rolls etc. These are fairly priced, noticeable by the large queue!
The site is clean but busy.
Underwater visibility is generally good.
Important information, including entry times can be found here.
DIVING STONEY COVE
Stoney Cove is a large inland site, see the site map.
Please note, the site is deep, with sections that are beyond the Ocean Diver qualification depth limit. There is plenty to see within the Ocean Diver limits. There is a large area with a maximum depth of 6m which is ideal for Ocean Diver training. On this 6m shelf there is a cockpit and Nautilus submarine along with other bits and bobs. There are often a lot of perch around, some pike, fresh water mussels and the occasional crayfish.
On this 6m shelf there is a cockpit, the Nautilus submarine along with other bits and bobs. There are often a lot of perch around, some pike, fresh water mussels and the occasional crayfish. There is a Historic wreck the Gresham, located at 6m on the far side of the Quarry, this was moved from the Thames to Stoney Cove and is used to train Nautical Archeologists.
There are two 20m areas. The main 20m area directly behind the 6m area is the most heavily dived part of the quarry. The far 20m area involves a long swim, which can prove a challenge with regards to available gas, and potentially the decompression obligations.
The main 20m area includes, the three wrecks, Stangarth, Defiant and the Belinda. The remains of the Wessex helicopter, a Landrover, the APC tank among other items are also located here.
The far 20m area has a number of items of interest, including a Glider, the MG’s, Transit Van and the wooden boat.
The deeper sections is dark and cold, visibility can also be extremely poor. For those of you suitably qualified. We strongly recommended that if you intend to dive the deeper sections of the site, you ask an experienced member of the branch to act as your buddy for your first few dives.
There is little of interest in the 36m area, other than the deep hydrobox and the Shires diving bell.
Entry and Exit
There are a number of entry and exit points to and from the water.
The bus stop is the right hand most entry point (on approaching the water). A covered platform above the water. It allows access directly into 6m of water. There is a ladder for exit. However, the last step can present a challenge. You may end up on your knees on the platform.
The slip way is to the left when approaching the water. Located between the changing rooms and the Pub.
The slipway can become slippery. Caution should be used both on entry and exit. It is often used for rescue drills and practice.
This is the main entry and exit point. Entry to the water can be made easily into a depth of about 2m. There are two spine ladders. The final step can be a challenge.
The easiest exit is the stepped exit point in the middle of the quay. A gap in the quay that you can swim into, with steps to exit onto the quay. This exit can get quite congested.