Dive Tips

Safety Stop Strategies

We all know how important it is to perform a 15-foot deep “safety stop” at the end of a no-decompression dive, particularly if the dive is deep or subsequent dives on a day of multiple dives. But it is important that your safety stop not be sloppy. A sloppy safety stop is when you are tense, bobbing up and down erratically, and breathing heavy. Your safety stop should be steady, comfortable, and not vary in depth more than a couple of feet. There are a […]

Top Ten Tips to Keep Your Dive Gear Working Like New

Remember how your dive gear looked and felt when it was brand new? Your wetsuit was flexible and slipped on easily. Moving parts functioned smoothly without sticking. That new gear look and feel, and more importantly that new gear performance, can last longer with a bit of routine maintenance. Here are my top ten tips to keep your gear working like new. 10) Soak, rinse and thoroughly dry your gear at the end of every dive trip. I normally like to soak gear overnight, particularly […]

Top Ten Tips For More Enjoyable California Diving

California offers divers both unique opportunities and challenges. Divers become comfortable and enjoy new diving situations by gaining confidence through experience. In addition to mastering diving skills such as buoyancy control and navigation, there are simple things you can do to increase your joy of California diving. Here is my top ten: 10. Carry a light. Diving beneath a thick bed of kelp, or under a plankton layer can be dark. A good light will allow you to see more critters and see their true […]

What to Do When the Sea Turns on You

Dive long enough, with multiple dives under your belt, and sooner or later the sea will turn on you. Surprises will happen. Seas will suddenly come up, the wind will shift, currents will change 180 degrees, and surf will rise unexpectedly. Then you will find yourself in a difficult if not scary situation. First and foremost, be prepared. Have a signaling device such as whistle, horn, sausage, mirror or better yet a combination of the aforementioned. Have weights that are easy to dump and, just […]

Night Diving with a Buddy

I like diving with a buddy, not just for the safety aspects but for the shared experiences. Also, with a second set of eyes, I see more on dive with a buddy. But the one situation that seems to create an excess of dive buddy problems is night diving. Separation is a common problem, and more dangerous at night. Or if you’re diving in a group, you somehow end up attached to the wrong diver or in the worst case, blinded by your buddy with […]

Diving Tricky Currents

Knowing how to dive in currents is an important skill and should be taught in any basic scuba class. The most basic principle of current diving is to start your dive heading up current, returning with the current. Another important principle of current diving is the use of a trailing line with a float for use should you overshoot the boat. But these are just basic techniques for standard current diving. The ocean can get trickier than that. THE EDDY Eddies often occur inside of […]

Care and Feeding of Wetsuits

Wetsuits represent a substantial investment in your cache of diving equipment. Lower end models run at least a couple hundred dollars where as high end, custom suits can represent investments of up to $500 or more, often more than what is spent on a regulator or buoyancy compensator. Why is it then, do we so badly abuse our wetsuits? Probably because we think we can get away with it. But abuse leads to colder diving, faster deterioration of the suit, and eventual failure—and we blame […]

Current Diving Tips and Tricks

When diving in a current, you want to plan properly and dive accordingly lest you be swept down current, away from your planned water exit point. Rules of diving in a current are really simple. Always begin your dive upcurrent so your return trip will be easier. Off a boat, use a trailing current line with a float behind the boat should you overshoot the boat. Streamline your gear. These are all fundamentals that you probably learned in your basic scuba class. But there are […]

Easy Ways to Stay Warm

Has the water been just a bit too chilly for you lately? The ultimate way to stay warm is with a good quality dry suit or a custom made wetsuit with superior materials and the right configuration. But maybe you already have a good wetsuit or you just need to take the edge off the chill. There are things you can do to stay warmer and more comfortable on your next dive trip that are simple, easy and inexpensive. And if you stay warm you’ll […]

What To Do Between Dives

During a day of diving two, three, or even four dives, you still will spend a great deal of time on the deck of a boat waiting for an air fill, a boat move, or just trying to get in a decent surface interval. How you spend that time can impact the enjoyment of your dive trip. Below are a few key things you can do to make your dive trip more productive, comfortable and enjoyable, even during those times not in the water. GET […]

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