The Nubble Lighthouse Keeper
Nubble Lighthouse in Cape Neddick, Maine, holds a special place in my heart as Nubble was the first dive site I dove when I first moved to New England. Whenever I’m looking to get out for a dive, I usually check conditions there first given it’s one of my favorites. After Pierce Island in Portsmouth, it’s the 2nd site I’ve dove the most in New England with close to 200 dives. Nubble never disappoints. I’ve personally have had some of my all-time best encounters with marine life diving off Nubble. I encountered my first sightings of Torpedo Rays, Seals, Sturgeon and last December, came across a Blue Fin Tuna right off the northern point of the island. On multiple occasions I came across the largest schools of bait fish. Some bait balls of Pollack, Menhaden (“Pogies”) were so big right above me, the water would darken. This past October, two of my regular dive buddies encountered a humpback whale. Night dives at Nubble are also special with some of the largest schools of squid and occasional bioluminescence. Nothing like surfacing to a beautiful starry sky lit by a full moon.
In the Spring of 2008, as my buddies and I were suiting up, the Lighthouse Keeper at that time asked if we would be willing to do him a favor and secure his mooring ball to the mooring in the cove. We were only too glad to help. To thank us, the Lighthouse Keeper offered to row us out on his dinghy to the island for a tour of the lighthouse. It was special as I got to experience the inside of the house. It was still the same as when Town of York became Guardian of Nubble in 1997. There were wood paneled walls, 70’s shag carpet, GSA issued office desks and bookshelves full of USCG manuals. The real highlight though was getting to go up to the lighthouse for the panoramic view.
Several years later, I introduced myself to Matt Rosenburg, the new Lighthouse Keeper who replaced the previous one that had retired. I offered to help Matt with the mooring ball which he really appreciated. Putting the mooring ball out in the spring and removing it in the fall has since become an annual ritual and Matt and I have since formed a special bond. A couple years ago, while talking to Matt after one of my dives Matt shared he was diver and that he hadn’t dove since he completed his open water dives at Nubble when he was a student at UNH 25 years ago. I’ll never forget the look of excitement in Matt’s eyes when I offered to take him out for a refresher, kit him up with set of gear. We went out August of 2021 and for Matt, the dives we did that day were the highlight of his summer. Matt had an amazing experience and said diving was better than he remembered. We’ve since have done several dives together and I even had the opportunity dive with Matt on the other side of the island off his boat this past July.
So the next time you’re out diving at Nubble and see Matt working, please say hi!
Below is link to Matt’s Instagram account. His pictures and artwork are amazing!
Nubble Lighthouse decked out for Christmas: Meet the keeper who keeps it bright
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