Hello and welcome to our community! Is this your first visit?
Register
Page 1 of 4 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 39

Thread: Scapa

  1. #1
    TDF Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    By the sea
    Posts
    70
    Likes (Given)
    19
    Likes (Received)
    6

    Scapa

    Hi
    I am thinking of going to Scapa next year, autumn time. More than likely going to be just two of us. Any advice or recommendations would be very much appreciated.

    Thanks

    Paul.

  2. #2
    Could start a fight in a convent. Mikael's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Eastbourne
    Posts
    4,032
    Likes (Given)
    1097
    Likes (Received)
    1286
    There will be a lot of potential recommendations depending on what you want advice on from what boats to go on, where to stay, gear to take, which pubs to go to... etc

    Is there something in particular you are looking for tips on?
    Why is it that with everything in life I always find a more difficult way of doing it (and not intentionally)

  3. #3
    TDF Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Location
    United Kingdom
    Posts
    430
    Likes (Given)
    16
    Likes (Received)
    200
    Take your car over. We were the first boat out in the morning and done diving by 1/2pm. That's a lot of time to kill. Whilst sat in the pub, I couldn't help but think about the genuinely interesting things to see in Orkney.

    If you're just wanting to do the usual german stuff then there's not really a benefit in staying on board. Shoreside accomodation will be more comfortable. I'd probably opt for the cheapest option though.

    If you've never been before, don't get too hung up on the battleships. They're incredible and I'd happily go up there to spend a week diving just one of them. However, if you're doing the whole fleet and a couple of miscelaneous dives, you'll probably find that the cruisers are better dives to drop onto. They're still massive, but manageably so.

    I don't think there are any dive boats to avoid these days. Fewer than there used to be but those that are left are good at what they do.

  4. #4
    Established TDF Member witchieblackcat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Penwortham
    Posts
    1,680
    Likes (Given)
    1676
    Likes (Received)
    493
    If you have time then dive the Churchill Barrier block ships.
    We went for our fourth trip this summer and had never done them; glad we did this time.

  5. #5
    TDF Member DaveBarber's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    SS7 BENFLEET
    Posts
    362
    Likes (Given)
    48
    Likes (Received)
    157
    MV Karin my choice of boat.

    If you need digs - Browns Hostel.

    The bus is very easy for getting around Orkney site seeing.

  6. #6
    TDF Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    By the sea
    Posts
    70
    Likes (Given)
    19
    Likes (Received)
    6
    Thank you everyone for your help.

    Paul.

  7. #7
    Established TDF Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    NW UK
    Posts
    1,370
    Likes (Given)
    308
    Likes (Received)
    486
    I usually go up and stay on board Karin, it's cheap and cheerful and the skipper has some interesting stories when you get him on the lash. And there is no red tape or bollox.
    Take all the political shit up there between the skippers with a shovelful of salt.

    Other end of the spectrum is huskyan if you want fancy digs, double the price, a shiny boat and massive detailed dive briefings.

    Or the green boats that Helen and Hazel run if you want to come home about 3 stone heavier.


    Go for the St Margaret's Hope ferry over.

  8. #8
    Established TDF Member Decosnapper's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Hampshire
    Posts
    1,032
    Likes (Given)
    475
    Likes (Received)
    903
    To whet your appetite:

    Scapa Flow in 3D

    There are a couple of things you cannot see in that collection; the torpedo has been blown up and the German WW1 motor pinnace was visited by divers who proceeded to strip it of all brass.

    Autumn can be good for underwater visibility. Take a car and explore the rest of the island - there are lots of places to visit.

    +1 for the Gills Bay -> St Margaret's Hope ferry.

    *Shameless Plug Alert*

    There is an iBook available covering the history of the UB116 and includes 3D models and site plans plus historical photos...including a contemporary image of the chap Mentioned in Despatches for his work in the listening station that first detected the submarine:

    UB116 - The First 100 Years/id1438732155
    Last edited by Decosnapper; 24-09-2019 at 09:03 AM.

  9. #9
    Procrastinating
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Glasgow
    Posts
    215
    Likes (Given)
    97
    Likes (Received)
    138
    The company that runs the Valkyrie and Valhalla have a track record of not paying their staff minimum wage so personally I'd avoid them on ethical grounds.
    (This isn't a baseless accusation, see here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/r...ons-in-backpay)

    My favourite boat is the Jean Elaine, maybe a little bit more rough around the edges than some of the pricier options but you won't find a better dive boat skipper on Orkney.

    Agree with others about not fixating on the German stuff and the battleships. IMHO the best dives in / around the flow are the Tabarka and the Barrie - two very different dives but well worth the effort. Also agree about getting the Pentalina from Gills Bay to St Margaret's Hope, although this really is only an option if you're taking your car. The drive from the ferry to Stromness takes you past a few sights such as the Churchill Barriers, the Italian Chapel and Kirkwall. It's also a shorter crossing. The last time we did it, we stopped and dived at the barriers which was a good shakedown for some of our folk and was a nice gentle introduction to the week.

    The best advice I'd give you though is make sure you're dived up before you go as it'll make a big difference to your enjoyment of the first few days. Also, a week in Scapa can be physically demanding just because you're doing two fairly deep dives per day for 5-6 days in a row. One of my mates described it as "relentless"! Don't be afraid to take a day off from diving in the middle of the week to let your body recover a bit. If you've got a car you can go sight seeing that day.

    One last thing, we took our full boat (12 divers plus skipper and deck hand) to the curry house in Kirkwall on a Monday night. The owner offered to do us an off-menu selection of food for all 14 at something really cheap like 10-15 a head. We suspected he was going to offload the weekend's leftovers onto us but we ended up having an excellent, massive meal with about 5 different types of curries plus all the usual accompaniments - if you get an offer like that in there, take it.

  10. #10
    TDF Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Location
    United Kingdom
    Posts
    430
    Likes (Given)
    16
    Likes (Received)
    200
    Quote Originally Posted by stuart_m View Post
    The company that runs the Valkyrie and Valhalla have a track record of not paying their staff minimum wage so personally I'd avoid them on ethical grounds.
    (This isn't a baseless accusation, see here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/r...ons-in-backpay)
    OP, I hope you've got some good advice so far because I sense that this thread is about to get heated...
    Last edited by NWdiver; 24-09-2019 at 10:48 AM.


 
Page 1 of 4 123 ... LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •