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Quarry Diving: 500 Dives in a Quarry - Are You SERIOUS???

Discussion in 'Basic Scuba' started by Drewski, Jul 21, 2011.

  1. lulubelle

    lulubelle Contributor

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location:
    863
    96
    I poo poo'ed quarry diving when I first started diving. After all, I had a perfectly good ocean in reach. But I did my training OUS, so I had no local shop with which I was affiliated, and was having a hard time meeting other divers my first few months after I did my OW. So in January 2009, I made a pot of chili and joined a local group at the quarry for a New Year's Day gathering. No way was I going diving that day, but I met a ton of divers. So it has proven itself to be a great place to meet other divers from my area, as opposed to diving offshore, which is in large part, divers from everywhere else.

    Since then, it has shown me even more value. I go there when I have new equipment to check out, to work on a skill, to practice skills needed for an upcoming class offshore, or just when I want to hang out with other local divers. It is absurd to practice a skill ad nauseum when you are paying for an offshore charter. I dive offshore a lot. I have realized that I need to spend more time in the quarry to practice skills.

    With that being said, I'd like to add a note to the points made by others on "quarry divers" going offshore without ocean experience, or with only "tropical" ocean experience. I do wish, very sincerely, that there be some requirement for competency checks in each new dive environment. I certainly would find a way to go through that process myself if I was diving in cold water Vancouver for the first time. Resorts generally make people do check out dives, could ops not do something similar? Not that it would be practical to do that here in NC, but perhaps the first offshore dive here might carry a requirement to hire a DM, since they do not guide dives here otherwise. I just see a lot of freshwater divers, and tropical water divers, some with exceptionally high levels of training and skills, have trouble here despite very thorough briefings. Last weekend, in heavy current, I spent a few minutes in terror when one let go of the anchor line and was swept out of sight.

    At the end of the day, as divers, we are all responsible for evaluating new dive environments and our readiness and preparation to dive them. And to seek the training or guidance we need to come into a new dive environment safely. I don't think that training standards or operators can legislate this but so much, although I would like there to be some ocean requirement for OW. We as divers have to have the self awareness to do so.
     
    Splitlip likes this.
  2. vladimir

    vladimir Solo Diver

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location:
    38,560
    49,707
    I've lived half of my adult life outside the United States, but I've never seen that acronym before.
     
  3. chs8084

    chs8084 Contributor

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Bloomington, IN
    190
    7
    I would certainly hire a DM, I guess the thing is to hope for enough common sense among divers to realize when something will be particularly novel and challenging.
     
  4. lulubelle

    lulubelle Contributor

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location:
    863
    96
    Yes, I agree, but when it is lacking people can die. So although I do believe, very much so, that each diver is responsible for assessing their readiness for any new dive environment, a few minor changes to protocol might save some lives of those who aren't very self aware.

    I did not hire a DM for my first deep ocean dive here. I grew up on this ocean, pulled a kid out of a riptide the first time when I was 10. What I did do was to find a buddy who had been diving these waters since the time of Christ, a SAR diver, who coached me better than any class would for that first dive. I'm just starting now, 130 dives in, to be the more experienced diver of a pair and assessing a new buddy's readiness for our conditions has even more importance to me now.
     
  5. vladimir

    vladimir Solo Diver

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location:
    38,560
    49,707
    I did qualify it with "If I had to choose," but in a way I do. While cost is not a huge constraint upon my diving, time is, and I have gone from 75-100 dives a year to 20-35 dives a year. But I don't worry about getting rusty between trips. If I can't manage a dive in warm clear tropical water after 780 dives, I'll hang up the fins--or stick to quarries.
    :D

    (I actually think a cold quarry in a 7-mm wetsuit would be more challenging than most of the dives I have done lately.)
     
  6. SelkieDVM

    SelkieDVM Divemaster

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location:
    808
    40
  7. glen99

    glen99 Registered

    # of Dives: 25 - 49
    Location: cincinnati
    58
    8
    I am still a newbie, but it is amazing watching fish in their natural environment. I know that carp and catfish are not exotic, but wow, it is cool being underwater for an hour watching them as a visitor in their home. Yes, I do find rusty school busses and old buick's pretty cool 40 feet under water. I even giggled like a little girl the first time I saw a mannequin in a bathtub while diving. My daughter and I are saving up for a nice Carribean trip, but until then, I am content blowing bubbles in rural Ohio.

    glen
     
    Davemohio likes this.
  8. Doc Harry

    Doc Harry Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Appalachia
    3,636
    862
    They say that there is no such thing as a silly question, but this proves "they" are wrong:

    Here's big revelation for you Drewski: not everyone lives near the ocean.
     
  9. Davemohio

    Davemohio Divemaster

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Columbus OH USA
    424
    89
    I never thought quarry diving would appeal to me..due to the colder temps. Now I am addicted. I am fortunate enough to live within 2 hours of some very nice quarries/dive sites. The ocean is many hours away.

    I like the friendships I have made. I even like the 2 hour drive getting there. Clears my mind. Spending a day diving is like a mini vacation, on the weekened. Gets me outta dodge. I have not even gotten close to getting tired of it. Alot of serious quarry divers go to more exotic locales as well. In other words, you don't know what you don't know.

    One of my quarry buds dives in Cozumel 2 to 3 times a year, as budget allows.

    Would I rather be in the Caribbean? You betcha.

    Is it practical? Not for me!
     
  10. Paco

    Paco ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Wisconsin, USA
    1,247
    7
    I love the ocean dives but can only do one of those trips a year. I enjoy Lake Michigan charter wreck trips but they also can get expensive and after you've seen a wreck a dozen times you wonder more about the expense. And there can be a certain amount of fun in the challenge of low visibility diving in quarries.
     

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