Season Dive: 2
Site: Diamond Cove, Hopkins
Max Depth: 32 feet
TBT: 61 minutes
Cumulative: 12 hours, 12 minutes
On Friday night, 8/1, Nick and I headed up to the cklahr cabin early to get a Friday night dive in since Kristen and I were running in the Cross Lake Dam Run
5k marathon on Saturday morning. We finally got all of our dive gear and were eager to try it all out. We met at MSD, got some last minute necessities like clips, extra weight, tank covers, a noise maker to get Nick’s attention underwater, etc., drove to the cabin, consolidated our dive gear into the explorer and took off to Diamond Cove.
Once there, a bunch of zipperheaded actions by me took place. I grabbed my shiny new pink tank and started to hook up my brand new reg, an Apeks ATX50 with Suunto Gekko dive computer, when Nick advised me to put my BCD on the tank first. Woops, I knew that, I was just so excited. I strapped my brand new turquoise trimmed Diva XLT onto my tank then proceeded to put my regulator on. The first stage swivels for maximum mobility and I was real confused as to how it went on. First I put it on upside down. Woops. Then once I got it on it was backwards. What the heck? Then I realized my BCD was on the tank backwards. Good grief. I redid my whole set up. Next step, putting on my new Pinnacle semi-dry suit, which is really just a glorified wet suit that you don’t want to pee in. It’s a one piece suit with hood attached. It was quite a struggle to get it on. I needed Nick’s help to yank it up and he pulled me right off my feet. It was a hot day and the layer of sweat my body was producing wasn’t helping the suit go on any easier. “All right,” I thought, “now just for the hood.” I looked down in front of me at an empty hood, something didn’t look right. The opening of the hood was pointed at me. Then it dawned on me that my suit was on backwards. AAARRRGGHHHHH!!
At this point Kristen was already in the water yelling, “Are we going diving?” The struggle of getting it off and back on made me very frustrated. I was ready to say screw it and sit in the car for the night. The hood seemed tight and felt like it was choking me. The suit made me a lot less mobile than the farmer johns I was used to. Nick had to stick my weight pouches in for me. I decided to go with 24 pounds, afraid that the suit would make me more buoyant.
We got in the water. My new black Atomic split fins with spring backs went on quickly. Finally something worked out for me!! My mask, tried and true, went on quickly as well. The gloves didn’t work out quite so well. I couldn’t get them over my wrists. They came free with my suit, which I bought online at Leisure Pro, so I couldn’t really complain, but it was a damper on the already tainted dive. I was going to go without gloves as the surface temp was quite comfortable. Nick poo-pooed that idea and gave me his gloves to wear since he wanted to stay in the shallows and play with his dive computer. I didn’t want to wear them because they were quite large on me and I was worried they would make it difficult to use my camera, but once underwater they snugged right up and I was very glad to have them.
Curtis, Kristen and I headed out while Nick stayed back near shore. There wasn’t a whole lot to look at underwater, so I spent a lot of time checking out my computer and making sure Kristen was still in her favorite place, directly above me. We made a few resurfaces during the dive. One was over 5 minutes because my computer started recording it as a different dive. Eventually Nick caught up with us, bare hands and all. I had a real hard time with my buoyancy during the dive. I could tell I was over weighted. Better that than severely under weighted. It’s all part of the learning curve with new stuff I suppose.
The thing I enjoyed the most during the dive was knowing that everything on me was mine. No more questionable rental equipment. All my gear would be with me the next time I dove and each time after that. It was very comforting knowing that this was all the gear I would come to trust and get to know like an extension of my body. Maybe I would even learn how to put it together correctly on the first attempt!!