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How were your first experiences in diving?

Discussion in 'New Divers & Those Considering Diving' started by Karen Es, Jan 19, 2006.

  1. Fish_Whisperer

    Fish_Whisperer Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: In a car underwater with time to kill....
    My first dive was in Vortex Spring. On a ledge about 40' down, we did all of our skills. When that was done, my instructor motioned for me to follow him. I crossed the rim of boulders ringing the ledge, and looked down into what looked like the Abyss. We descended through the underwater canyon and came to rest at the bottom, at the entrance to the cave. A couple of freshwater eels stopped and hovered in front of my mask, checking me out and then swam off. That was great, but I was too nervous to really enjoy it.

    My first OW dive was a bleary frigid descent on Bridge Span 14, in Panama City Beach. The dive was okay, but I froze my cajones off. We hit the thermocline and my DM asked if I was okay. I put my arms around myself and made the "Brrrr!" motion. He thumbed up questioningly and I pointed DOWN DOWN DOWN!! When we got back, he said, "I thought you were cold!" I replied, "I came here to dive, not whine!" I didn't enjoy that dive very much because I'd completely forgotten about getting my buoyancy dialed in, and I was concentrating on not banging into any of the girders or scraping myself up.

    The next dive was the Black Bart. This time, it suddenly occured to me to get neutral after I'd descended a ways. I did. I was lying stretched out, face-down like a skydiver, and then bent a little at the waist and let all of the air out of my lungs. I began to descend, utterly motionless, and the bridge of the Bart emerged out of the blue like magic, or like I was flying in a dream... Great schools of jacks were swimming by. From that moment, I was thoroughly hooked! That dive was GREAT! :)
  2. TSandM

    TSandM Missed and loved by many. Rest in Peace ScubaBoard Supporter

    My first dives are recorded in my journal. They were not particularly fun -- my drysuit leaked and I got hypothermia and ended up stripping to my underwear on the sidewalk to get into dry clothes. I was completely "at sea" underwater -- disoriented and confused. I often wonder why I stuck with it! Surprisingly, it wasn't long before I was completely hooked. I think I must have a lot of masochist in me :)
  3. Santa

    Santa Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Denmark
    I was a bit afraid I would fall endlessly into the blue depths. Not really realizing the far more likely danger of ascending uncontrollably.

    I also remember thinking how long it would take to nail this buoyancy thing - would it take as long as learning to ski well, and would you need to work really hard to regain your skills after a rest.

    For a while I was really worried about those little bubbles coming from my instructors first stage, and afraid I might be an accomplice to his early demise if I didn't let him in on it - but I knew no signals for "dude - your first stage is kinda bubbly".

    I was secretly smug, though, because he couldn't fin properly but had some strange, messy-looking frog-type finning style, and was clearly not a technical, competitive swimmer like myself.

    Still I worried about my faulty inflator, that just wouldn't let out any air unless you raised it high.

    ...and they made me wear the pink weightbelt.
  4. DandyDon

    DandyDon Old men ought to be explorers ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: One kilometer high on the Texas Central Plains
  5. modivin

    modivin Registered

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Burlington, North Carolina
    My first experiences were back in 1977 as a 12 year old. I was certified as a "basic" scuba diver in central FLorida diving in DeLeon Springs and Alexander Springs. My instructor was a very experienced cave and rescue instructor. We did several cavern dives and penetrated the cave in DeLeon springs several times (althought not far and always within reach of my instructor) just before I was certified. What a thrill I'll never forget. I am just now getting back into the sport with my wife after not diving for quite some time. Would love to get my cave certification one day....Nothing like the Florida springs for freshwater diving.
  6. divecouple

    divecouple Registered

    My first dive experience was a resort course in Maui. I did fine in the pool but once in the ocean I had a full blown panic attack. I kept watching the water line get higher and higher over my head, I couldn't get one ear to clear and totally freaked out. I had tried snorkling for the first time just the day before but I am a good swimmer so I thought I'd feel comfortable in the water. But no, I surfaced, spit out my reg, forgot to inflate my BC, and freaked out. The instructor helped me and I ended up swimming back to shore. I didn't think I'd ever try scuba again but I did a year later and am now certified with a whole 15 dives to my credit.

    So I guess I'll be the first "bad" experience if you can call it that. I didn't hurt myself and now I'm hopefully wiser!
  7. Hank49

    Hank49 Solo Diver

    I broke all the rules....again. In 1980 I went down with an ichthyologist, who's daughter I was married to, in Hanauma Bay on Oahu. I never had any training at all except for what he told me on the walk down the hill to the beach. He told me if it got hard to suck air to "turn this valve", and I'll get more, but to let him know so we could go up. So down we went, to about 60 feet he said. It got hard to get air and I turned the valve and signaled him after following him around taking pictures. After that I thought diving wasn't that great though. I was into surfing at the time and didn't dive again for 13 years.
  8. micknewton

    micknewton Contributor

    I did my first 'dive' back in 1968, when I was about 12 years old. I was on vacation in Ensenada Mexico with my family. One day we were out near La Bufadora ("The Blowhole" or "The Snorter") and there was an old guy diving in these big tide pools. I talked the old guy's ear off, asking him all kinds of questions about scuba diving. He must have got tired of all the questions because he finally asked me if I wanted to try it. Naturally, I did, so he got the tank and mask on me, then showed me how to breathe through the mouthpiece. I splashed around in the shallows for a few minutes and had a blast. It was one of the funnest vacations I had ever had. I remember later that day my parents bought two of the biggest lobsters that ever swam the seas from some kid on the beach. Ever since that day, I've loved lobster and always wanted to learn to scuba dive.

    My second 'dive' was back in 1972 in a swimming pool in West Covina California. The recruiter that signed me into the Navy was a diver, and he threw a party just before I left for boot camp. At the party we all got drunk and dove in his pool. Tons o' fun!

    Now we live near Portland Oregon. Our son and daughter are grown and doing well, our careers are doing nicely, and we now have the time and money to do a little traveling. So, now it's finally time to get certified. We are taking the PADI OW course and will be doing our certification dives in Puerto Vallarta in a few days. I'm stoked! We're already planning a trip back to Belize, or possibly Cozumel, for next year. We stopped in Cozumel and Belize on a cruise last year. Snorkeling on the reefs in Belize was super fun, and that reminded me that it's time to get certified.

  9. Karen Es

    Karen Es Registered

    Well, I wouldn't say impressive, you were in a lot of places I'd like to go in the future. But next Friday I'm heading off to Brazil again!, to the NE coast this time (Natal & Pipa). Still don't know if I'll have the time (and the money) to go to Noronha.
    I know in the beach known as Praia Golfinhos there are dolphins, and I wonder if this actually will happen to me. I need to pinch myself just to check!
    I can't wait to go back home to prepare my diving gear!
    Karen :)
  10. MSilvia

    MSilvia Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Cohasset, Massachusetts USA
    My first post-certification dive was also my first dive in the ocean, as weather had made doing my checkout dives in the Atlantic a particularly bad idea, and we'd resorted to using a local pond instead. My father's name had made it to the top of the waiting list for a mooring in Cohasset harbor, just south of Boston, and he asked me if I could go down there with him and find his mooring chain on the bottom.

    Long story short, he waited on the dock while I did a solo dive in arm-length vis (so much for better vis in the ocean) using rented equipment and probing the bottom muck with a stick for anything hard enough to be a concrete slab. It wasn't particularly enjoyable, but it was a good learning experience.

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