Question Cave 2 or sidemount full cave?

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I would finish with Cave2 and check that "full cave + stages + survey" knowledge and experience box.

I would not try to get up to speed in SM while on a full cave course. You can come back to complex and or small cave dives in SM at a later date.
If you already are a cave1 diver that normally dives CCR and have no desire of diving sidemount when not diving caves i think you should continue with a cave2 class. Full cave classes are ofc different depending on agency and instructors, but I don't think it is very usual to include the use of stages and basic survey on a full cave class. At least it does not seem to be the norm around here.

As a cave1 diver the step up to what you can do on a cave2 level is enormous. Being able to bring 2 stages and a deco bottle into the cave will increase your range and options ALOT more than a slightly lower profile.

I more or less only dive sidemount but with a GUE background, and I do absolutely consider sidemount an advanced tool that can get you in more trouble than your normal rig, so a it more than some experience is probably not a bad idea. That is if you start using your sidemount equipment to their limits instead of diving it only in BM caves. So time on a Cave 2 level is not at all wasted if you want to be able to traverse even smaller restrictions later.

If diving SM only in BM caves you're left with the "its lighter to carry to the water" argument. But in my experience if it is any distance to walk to the cave entrance i would 9 out of 10 times put two SM cylinders in a Kubi bag and carry them on my back to the entrance. Pretty much as a set of doubles. Carry one and one over my shoulder is a lot less efficient and is almost as tiring as bagging two of them.

Also sidemount do require a bit of fine tuning so if you will not be diving it regularly you might end up not getting it 100% nailed down.
Thanks everyone for their thoughts, Cave 2 it is :wink: .

I think will probably dabble in sidemount eventually but I think I will end up with something fairly specialised like 2x7.


(stolen from the @thedivepoet)

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