Woo-hoo, my first official “Fun Dive”!! Curtis, Kristen and I headed up to Brainerd to participate in the Fun Dive yesterday. Kristen and I used our free fun dive coupons, saving us about $80 each. We went to Shangri-La in Alstead. At first I was kind of disappointed to hear we were going there since W. Alstead is where our first checkout dives were, and there really wasn’t anything to look at other than the platform.
I don’t know how many divers went in total, but there was a caravan of two MSD vans and about 6 other vehicles en route to the site. Tim (red-headed-ponytail-guy-who-fixes-stuff-at-MSD) joined the 3 of us for the dive. Shangri-La proved to be really neat. There were lots of trees. Visibility was only about 25′, so when we were down at 40+ I looked up and it appeared as though the trees went on forever. There was also an old car down there. I’m not sure what it was, but it looked like your typical late ’80s 4 door sedan. A Hot Topic bumper sticker was stuck on the dash and was in really good condition, leading me to believe someone stuck it there. Curtis said there was a beer bottle on the floor of it… perhaps that is why it is in the bottom of the mine?
The only downside was that the water was friggin’ freezing. Not to say it has necessarily been warm since I started this endeavor two weeks ago. But the previous times the water would slowly seep into the wetsuit and I would be slightly chilled, then after a few seconds it would warm up and be quite comfortable. This time the water was downright cold. The first half of the dive wasn’t too bad, but the second half was very uncomfortable. The thermocline was at… oh, let’s say 0 feet. I learned later the surface temp was 52Â°, whereas my previous dives have been around 62Â°. One of my toes went numb and it took about 30 minutes to restore feeling to it. Kristen had purple lips. Actually she had a purple line around her lips and the centers were all pink so it looked like she was rocking the thick plum lip liner look.
Although I’m sad Nick couldn’t attend, we were the last group out of the water with no one running out of air right away. We estimated our max depth at around 45′ for about 45 minutes, putting us in the pressure group S, which is a definite record setter for Kristen and me. Since I’m pretty sure I won’t be diving in MN until the spring, I’m eagerly looking forward to our trip to Belize!!