Welcome to Total Bottom Time!


Total Bottom Time is my online personal dive log. A place where I can share my dives with friends, family, other divers, and the world. You can find out a bit more about me and see my full log of dives by clicking on my profile on the right. Feel free to subscribe to my dives via email or RSS.

Below are just some of my latest dives.

Latest Dives


Kina

February 22, 2020

This time we were back at Red Rocks on the hunt for more crayfish. It was the first time I didn't see a single crayfish whatsoever on a hunt and certainly not for lack of trying. I spent most of the time with my head under the seaweed searching through every rock formation, crevasse, and ledge. Not a single crayfish. Oh well.

Rather than come back without anything, we started picking up kina (sea urchins). My buddy was keen to bring some home and prepare them in a meal. We came across a few nests and of course they were easy picking. We probably came back with 30-40 of them.

That night we grilled up the crayfish and cracked open the kina. It really wasn't so much cracking as it was cutting with a pair of scissors. Inside they're pretty gross.

Kina cutting

It's the yellow orange bits inside that are edible so those were scooped out with a spoon.

They can be prepared a few different ways but apparently they're also edible raw.

Getting some raw kina

Raw kina

The darker kina is very bitter (which is what I'm tasting in the video ...

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Crayfish hunt

February 22, 2020

It was a windy day in Wellington but we were still able to take get the boat out to Sinclair's Rock. This was my third time out on a hunt for crayfish and I was particularly happy with this dive. Last time around I grabbed whatever I could get my hands on and had to throw a number of crays back because they were too small. This time I was determined to grab only keepers.

I found a few nests but some only had juvenile crayfish so I passed on them. But it wasn't long before I found what I was looking for. Over the course of the dive I made 6 real grabs and came away with 4 crays, all of which were keepers.

The first and biggest one I caught was a handful. I got it halfway into my bag which I thought was as far as I needed to give me enough time to release the cray, get my hand out of the bag, and close it up. However, as soon as I released the cray, it scrambled out. I had to block it with my body to prevent it from escaping. I finally managed ...

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Crayfish catch at Red Rocks

January 26, 2020

This time we descended just off of Red Rocks in search of crayfish. This site is much shallower and much more weedy than Thoms Rock so it was difficult to find them off the start. As we headed away from the shore and got a bit more depth, we started to find some crays in nooks and crannies.

From this dive I had 5-6 attempts, 3 catches, and 2 throw backs for a total of 4 in my bag. A number of the other divers did better and we distributed the rest so we each had 6, the catch limit. Still, it was my best showing yet on a crayfish dive.

It was the first time preparing them myself so I kept it simple and just butterflied the tails and brushed on butter/garlic. My son helped out and completely prepared one himself, from tearing off the tail to butterflying it.

Prep Complete

Grillin

Grillin

I have to say, it's pretty gratifying having a meal with crayfish I caught and beer I brewed!

Crayfish Meal

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Everett Toews
TBT: 118h 40m