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Regulatrix

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Greetings to everyone-- I am a recreational diver living in Central Texas. I've been OW certified for about 31/2years, and AOW certified for about 3 years. I have about 68 logged dives?

My sweetie is my dive buddy, and we dive regularly at home, which means freshwater lakes. Most of our diving is as volunteers at a spring-fed, environmentally-sensitive lake (which just happens to be really beautiful with great visibility, so twist my rubber arm!). We have also done our share of dives in Lake Travis. We use summers as an opportunity to dive in blue water. Diving St. Croix this summer and Bonaire next summer, if the universe aligns.

Glad to be here! Fins up!
 

ibj40

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Can you tell me where this environmentally-sensitive lake is?

Need to get in a couple of checkouts.

Thanks and welcome to ScubaBoard!
 
OP
Regulatrix

Regulatrix

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Can you tell me where this environmentally-sensitive lake is?

Need to get in a couple of checkouts.

Thanks and welcome to ScubaBoard!

You bet! Yes, it's Spring Lake in San Marcos (the old Aquarena Springs), affiliated with The Meadows Center for the Environment/Texas State University. Lots of OW classes use the Training Area for their checkout dives. (Too shallow for AOW checkouts.). You have to take the Dive Authorization Course and demonstrate your bouyancy skills before you can dbecome a volunteer and dive outside the Training Area.
 
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Regulatrix

Regulatrix

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Born in Waco! Where in CenTex are you!

We're gonna dive Blue Hole in Santa Rosa one of these days.
 

ibj40

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You bet! Yes, it's Spring Lake in San Marcos (the old Aquarena Springs), affiliated with The Meadows Center for the Environment/Texas State University. Lots of OW classes use the Training Area for their checkout dives. (Too shallow for AOW checkouts.). You have to take the Dive Authorization Course and demonstrate your bouyancy skills before you can dbecome a volunteer and dive outside the Training Area.

We’ve considered that. We’re up in Hillsboro, so even though I35 is easy, a bit too far south for us.

Did my Divemaster checkout dives at Squaw Creek up near Glen Rose, but it’s been closed since 9/11.
 

SlugMug

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Spring Lake sounds real nice, but I cannot justify the mandatory $285 Dive Authorization Course. For me, it's 2-hours of driving each time I'd want to dive there (assuming no traffic). Then it sounds like you're voluntold tasks each time you want to dive there.

If I lived closer, I'd probably reconsider.
 

driftwood

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The Diving for Science program used to be a pretty good deal.

When I took the course it was $75, they filled your tanks after the dive and there were no parking fees. All of us knew how to navigate from the Training Area to either Deep Hole or Arch Site. Even today with a bit of luck I can find all the dive sites in the head waters without breaking the surface. BTW, you could dive solo and pretty much choose the site you wanted to clean up. Work your way through Cream of Wheat down to Catfish Hotel hitting the things that needed to most attention.

After the last BIG flood, I was tasked with doing a survey of all the sites in the lower lake from Cream of Wheat to the Outback, Kettleman's and Cold Spring at Cypress Point. Not an overly long survey, only three typed pages of changes.

These days, I wouldn't bother trying to dive there. Just not allowed to use the techniques that were proven effective. Guess I am just too "cowboy" for them. The "deconstruction" of the theme park (their term not mine) was a nightmare. It is only by the grace of God, the laziness of the oversight and the guile of the then lake manager that they have the floating dock in the Training Area. Aaron hid the dock from the admin in the hotel so it wasn't removed. In addition, we spent a lot of money tearing out a parking lot only to have to replace it because the "plan" didn't account for school bus's.

End of rant and the last word is that Spring Lake is the best dive site in the area to practice for cenote diving in the Yucatan. The temp is an exact match as is the specific gravity of the water (both are limestone karst aquifers).
 

SlugMug

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The Diving for Science program used to be a pretty good deal.

When I took the course it was $75, they filled your tanks after the dive and there were no parking fees. All of us knew how to navigate from the Training Area to either Deep Hole or Arch Site. Even today with a bit of luck I can find all the dive sites in the head waters without breaking the surface. BTW, you could dive solo and pretty much choose the site you wanted to clean up. Work your way through Cream of Wheat down to Catfish Hotel hitting the things that needed to most attention.

After the last BIG flood, I was tasked with doing a survey of all the sites in the lower lake from Cream of Wheat to the Outback, Kettleman's and Cold Spring at Cypress Point. Not an overly long survey, only three typed pages of changes.

These days, I wouldn't bother trying to dive there. Just not allowed to use the techniques that were proven effective. Guess I am just too "cowboy" for them. The "deconstruction" of the theme park (their term not mine) was a nightmare. It is only by the grace of God, the laziness of the oversight and the guile of the then lake manager that they have the floating dock in the Training Area. Aaron hid the dock from the admin in the hotel so it wasn't removed. In addition, we spent a lot of money tearing out a parking lot only to have to replace it because the "plan" didn't account for school bus's.

End of rant and the last word is that Spring Lake is the best dive site in the area to practice for cenote diving in the Yucatan. The temp is an exact match as is the specific gravity of the water (both are limestone karst aquifers).

I had vaguely remembered a friend (and fellow diver) telling me about an awesome park that used to be there, and then it was destroyed, and the people who own/maintain the area became super-restrictive. I also seem to remember something about performers and underwater glass viewing areas.

I guess to be a little more blunt, it seems like $285 and then free labor seems exploitative. And if the maintainers are essentially hoarding it, that's just that much worse.
 

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