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How Did You Go Solo?

Discussion in 'Solo Divers' started by DBPacific, Jul 23, 2019.

  1. FreeFlyFreak

    FreeFlyFreak Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 25 - 49
    Location: California
    I'll probably get ripped a new one for this, but I did my first solo dive as my 8th dive.

    Went with my GF/Dive buddy to an easy local spot to do 2 dives each. After the first dive and during the SI my GF told me she didn't feel like doing the second dive because she was too cold. OK i said, lets sit here for a while in the sun before we pack up.....

    I pondered back and forth going solo, we had 2 more full rented tanks in the car and I wasn't cold.

    I wasn't 100% comfortable, because I wouldn't have any redundant air, but the site is shallow max 40', and I had 2 cutting devices. After going back and forth with myself I decided the added risk was worth the reward.
    Now for the most risky part, broaching the subject with my GF Dive buddy.

    Surprisingly enough she said: "I could tell you were thinking about it", she said if it were her or anyone else she wouldn't recommend it. But because it was me and she knows me well "If you want to do it, go ahead. All i want to do is sit in the sun and get warm"

    So I geared up and off I went.
    The only mistake was not telling her how long I would be down. But our longest dive up to that point had been 45 mins, so I surfaced at 45 mins. Next time I would let her know in advance. "I'm glad you came up when you did, I was wondering how long after 45 mins I should alert the authorities" is all she said.

    It was a great dive! So much more relaxing only having to be concerned with myself and my gas. No checking for my buddy every minute.

    I have since bought a 19cuft pony to sling if I go solo again, for the added 1st stage and 100% gas redundancy. My GF is often not available to dive, so it may become a regular thing for me.

    I should mention that I am not risk averse, having almost 1000 skydives, raced cars, and crossed the Atlantic in a single engine Cessna plus 16k + hours in other aircraft. (I wouldn't do the single engine Ocean thing again though, once was plenty, I got the reward but it wouldn't be worth it for a second time)
    Its totally a risk vs reward ratio for me.

    I have seen some of the instabuddy candidates on a vacation dive boat, and at local sites, I wasn't overly impressed, plus reading scubaboard instabuddy horror stories. I'd rather dive alone, unless I can find someone I feel comfortable with other than my GF.
  2. DBPacific

    DBPacific ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Oregon, USA
    Skydiving alone makes you a lot more brave than I am. That and I think my bf would kill me if I didn't tell him how long I'd be down...

    Everyone in this thread has a ton of good points and great experiences. I found out that there's a self reliant/solo class nearish me and that's on my list when I'm able to have car access. Having the freedom to dive whenever your schedule allows and the confidence to make it back safely and take care of yourself in any situation are both very appealing.

    Hopefully my DSO won't find out though...
    Dark Wolf likes this.
  3. Graveyarddiver

    Graveyarddiver Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: North Carolina
    I’ve been diving since I was around 12, until I was an adult I always dove with my dad, who was both an instructor and an army combat diver (rebreather qualified, and would do long deep dives on air). After a a hiatus from diving in college, I came back and started going on boats and getting paired with insta buddies. I was alarmed at the lack of ability, training, confidence, overall awareness of these individuals. It was at this time that I brushed the dust off my twin 80s, added a spare mask to my harness and started showing up on dive boats with compete redundancy, and refused to dive with insta buddies for my own safety, and the sake of my dive. There was no way I was going to call a dive with more than half my gas, after a 2 hour drive, and $120 to get on the boat because my buddy burned through his gas. Since then I have expanded my solo diving to tec dives, with significant planning and a whole lot of redundant gas. It’s great to be able to plan your own dive and dive your plan, without additional variables thrown in. When summer really warms up the water I’ll go so far as to dive with my single tank, 4lbs on my weight belt, 1 regulator, w/ psi gauge, and my watch, ditching the wetsuit and BC. Total freedom, but absolutely a controlled risk, dine only at depths I’m confident I can make an emergency ascent and done on a rich nitro blend.

    At this point 75 percent of my dives are solo, most of the operators that are reputable know me as a familiar face and are confident in my abilities to deal with any situations I face on my own.
    Yawana-Dive, DBPacific and Dark Wolf like this.

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