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Alternative Names: Telephone Exchange Appin Road

Type of Dive: the Telephone exchange is a shore dive in Loch Leven on a small reef.

Suggested experience: Suitable for all, trainees included

Travel directions: Glasgow Google Edinburgh Google It’s on the main road between Ballachulish and Connel, on the A828.

Parking directions: 4WD’s can park on the verge, Google otherwise drop kit off at entry and park-up at the former gateway in front of the Exchange (the small building marked on the map and just in view on Google)

Telephone exchange parking

Distance from Glasgow: 103 Miles 2 hrs 15 mins Edinburgh 128 miles 2 hrs 53 mins 

Lat & Long: Nearest Post Code PA38 N56.617007 W-5.334356

Tides: Tide tables Use Port Appin

Depth: 20m max

Site entry/exit:  Difficult to spot, but there’s a small paving slab in the grass Google and the old wires in the fence have been lifted up with a branch to give enough height. See pics There are plenty of large rocks on which to set your kit for kitting up, tho’ I usually walk down fully kitted.

Telephone exchange parking

Underwater directions: Head straight out from the shore and if you get to 18m without meeting the reef then turn left to ascend the slope at 45 degrees. The reef will appear at about 12-14m, depth. Follow the reef along the bottom then go back and forth along its length at 2-3m increments to explore all the nooks and crannies. Check out the shoreline rock features in 4m on your return (if setting off for your return to shore from the southernmost end of the reef). The wave and rock action have carved out beautifully smooth shapes in the bedrock. The exit point is now to your left, past the solid rock.

Site Hazards: Sometimes slippy after rain under the trees. Tidal currents may cause you to lose direction. No strong currents, No boats this close to shore. Weeds on entry-exit hide trip boulders otherwise an easy dive.

Nearest Public phone: Creagan’s Inn or Duror

Accommodation: Contact me

Mobile Network service: O2 patchy tho moving a few yards at roadside brings back 3 bars

Other comments:

Pub: The Cregan Inn

Created by: Darryl Mayer

Cafe: Several along the road. Nearest is at Castle Stalker to the south.

Air & Nitrox fills: Puffin divers & The underwater centre

Date: 29/12/10

Revision: 1

Thanks To: Everyone who likes diving new sites.

Links: Contact me

Surface Photos: By Darryl Mayer

Underwater Photos: By Darryl Mayer

 Stepped rock formationUnderwater pictureHydrozoaStepped rock formation

Dive Map: Contact me

Dive Report: Dive tramp 29/12/10 This is a new site further along the same road, just before the old Telephone Exchange on the right set back off the road.  A wee clamber under the trees and duck under the old fence wire (I've wedged it up with a branch to stop us getting snagged on it) and you're on a cobble and shingle beach. Entry, into two the three metres of much clearer water and head out (towards Kilmalieu on the opposite shore of the Loch) and you'll drop over the top of a nice rock reef. If you miss the reef itself and find yourself in deeper than 18m just turn left and start ascending up the gentle slope at about 45 degrees to the right of your reciprocal direction. You can't miss it really, it's over 200m long. At about two-thirds of the way along this reef, there's a crack in the rock with a 6 foot Conger eel crammed into it. The head at one end and I stretched out my arms for the full distance to its tail poking out of another hole along the strata of the rock. A wee poke at the tail with a bit of Kelp proved that it was the same Eel... We have latterly found a Conger Eel family living in the numerous clefts in the reef here.

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