Best dive buddy option when out of town?

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Shafqat Ahmed

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I'm 30; I've been diving for about 6 years, 65 dives to date. 16 of them were shore dives in Monterey/San Diego, the rest were all boat dives in tropical locations.

I prefer boat dives in tropical locations, but sometimes I feel the urge and and either drive to Monterey or fly to San Diego for a couple quick weekend dives.

In San Diego, I've always paid to shore dive with a DM, because I thought it was safer to dive with a local professional diver instead of a stranger from a scuba forum. Last time I went, however, the DM was basically a kid, and he and his buddy were horsing around underwater - at one point they grabbed a horn shark and flipped it over to make it immobile. It occurred to me at that point that I'm not necessarily in better hands with DM's than strangers. At the same time - I don't think I know San Diego/Monterey well enough to guide my own dives, and I don't know what to expect from someone in a scuba forum.

I'm headed to San Diego next week - what would you advise me to do this time around?
 

the3dwizard

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You might post in the Socal forum. Might be able to find someone who dives there regularly and has the outlook on diving that you do. If they are active on the forum then at least maybe they are not a complete unknown.

Cheers!
 

TMHeimer

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That's what I'd do. I have had reasonable success finding decent buddies on the Deep Dixie sub-forum. But I dived there (FL panhandle) more often solo.
I don't think there is any real way to be sure a buddy is responsible. I've also been lucky on charters with "instabuddies".
I guess you have to be really clear when contacting someone on a forum-- specifics about their experience at the exact spots you want to dive.
I usually did a little research on the area and specific dive I wanted to do (asking at a shop, etc.), assuming it was not a local dive where I live, where conditions would be similar to other places here I've dived.
Another thing would be to take a Rescue course so you feel more independent (or even a solo course?). Then you'd feel better taking your chances with someone you haven't dived with before.
 

rick00001967

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the DM was basically a kid, and he and his buddy were horsing around underwater - at one point they grabbed a horn shark and flipped it over to make it immobile.

i hope you reported the DM to their boss
 

formernuke

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I just don't log dives
The regional area here or look for FB groups in that area.
 
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