Scuba Diving: Practice and Planning Makes for a Perfect Dive
I launched this section of Infolific.com to capture my scuba diving experiences from day 1 of the PADI certification to the dive vacations I've taken. Different divers have different interests and to orient you on the sort of information you'll find here, here's the sort of diver I am. First off, I like warm water diving only. I did my open water certification in November in a quarry in Pennsylvania. The aid temperature was in the 50s and the water temperature was just a little higher. Even with thicker suits than you'd use in the tropics, I got cold in the water after just 30 minutes and being hit by the wind coming out of the water had me shivering non-stop.
While I've been down to about 100 feet I'm more of a shallow diver. I find that the light is better at shallower depths which results in better photos. I enjoy seeing “big” ocean life like sharks, sea turtles, and dolphins, but I'm also quite happy to explore the coral nooks and crannies with a flashlight. I've also done a bunch of night dives which make for a different experience as your visibility is limited to wherever you can shine your light. Not to mention that the sea creatures are different e.g. more crustaceans.
I've been in one wreck while diving in the US Virgin Islands, but the bigger wrecks found off the east coast of the US are of no interest to me in large part, once again, because I don't like cold water diving. I understand that dry suits make all the difference in the world, but I haven't tried one so I can't say that I'd end up feeling any different.
Curiously, I'm a diver that suffers from mild seasickness. Pretty funny, huh? I discovered this while bobbing at the surface after one of my first dives when I had sucked all the air before the rest of the divers I was with. I've been good on a vast majority of boat dives and while some did have high waves, once I got in the water the discomfort passed. Phew! Luckily I discovered shore diving on a recent trip to Belize.
I've been buying more and more equipment, preferring to own rather than rent most items. However, I'm still not convinced that owning my own regulator and BCD makes sense. The BCD is bulky and would add to what I have to pack perhaps even requiring a new bag. And the regulator seems to require so much maintenance that there are no cost benefits vs. renting gear from a reputable dive shop. I do have my own wetsuit, boots, gloves, snips, noisemaker, flashlight, mask, fins, and wrist-mounted notepad. I can get this gear and my buddy's gear into a single bag which is quite manageable.