Dive Report for January 10, 2012
My first dive of the year!! And it was pure comedy. We had our annual Hammerhead Dive Meetup on Friday January 6th, the first Friday of the month as usual except the conditions were crappy. Big swells. So we met for some hot chocolate and rescheduled the night dive for Tuesday January 10th.
Divers: Erin, Lucas, Melissa, Heath, Fred, Bethy, Stephen, Kimo, Tyler and Jen
Location: La Jolla Shores
Conditions: 1-2 ft waves, easy kick out.Viz was 2ft at the decent, 15-25 feet at the canyon edge.
The general dive report is the conditions were calm and it was an easy kick out. We actually overshot the canyon and ended up dropping to 80 feet. Monitioring our computers, we kept it a slow, safe decent in about 2 feet of visability then took a heading and made it up to the wall where the viz cleared up nicely to 15 feet, even up to 25 feet in pockets. With effective underwater communication, two of our divers aborted due to certain difficulties, and we linked up as a buddy group rather than pairs. We had a nice slow “photography” dive along the wall till our 1200 psi safety turn around point. Saw the usual critters out about, a camo octopus, numerous sarcastic fringeheads, spiny lobster, kelp crab, sheephead crab, cusk eels, and sting rays galore. Not the stellar conditions we had been spoiled with at the shores lately, but still a really great dive in the new year!
Now the nitty gritty details…
Due to winters colds and the holiday season, this was my first dive back in the water since mid December. And I was excited. Maybe too excited. LOL We are also in the middle of a floor remodel which means the house is in disarray. More specifically the garage is in disarray… where our dive gear is. So I partly blame this on the remodel and things being out of place and partly blame me being out of my weekly dive routine. Bottom line I got to the shores, geared up, went to set up my tank… and realized I forgot my regulator. Yes that key element to help you LIVE underwater, BREATHE underwater…was not in my car. Seriously? So embarrassing. Luckily I only live about 7 minutes away. I snuck away, sped home, grabbed my reg and raced back to the shores to pull up to the majority of the crew standing there lined up ready to to make fun of me. Awesome. LOL I would have felt completely embarrassed if a certain someone else didn’t forget their camera and also ran home, or certain someone else didn’t leave their mask on top of their car and I had to go chasing after them while they were at the waters edge, or if a certain someone else’s mask strap didn’t break at decent and had to swim back in real quick to borrow another, or regulator wasn’t leaky and ended up free flowing too much air as they were decending and their dive was aborted, or that someone else couldn’t equalize and had to abort. Or if we didn’t overshoot the canyon and dropped to 80 feet. Or if we had someone who has never descended in low viz like it was and that deep and had some minor panic feelings underwater…
So some might say why didn’t you just abort the dive completely with all this going wrong? Well bottom line, we had good dive buddies that were prepared for each event that went wrong. And all that went wrong simply became a minor technicality we dealt with as it happened in a cool, calm, collective manner. We handled it and moved on with our dive. Could there have been something we could have done differently? Sure. Could it have gone much much worse if we didn’t have the trained level headed divers that we did. Yes. Were we level headed and smart and still had a great dive? Yes! Dive within your limits. And continue your education. Even if it just tagging along with your favorite instructor during one of their classes to keep your key dive skills sharp. (My personal favorite is helping in a Rescue class!) And most importantly learn from each dive and don’t take anything for granted. Happy and SAFE diving to you all!