- Reaction score
- Alexandra Headland
- # of dives
- 1000 - 2499
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Whoops, sorry about that, I meant to explain this in the OP, but forgot. @johndiver999 is correct, it basically means a s****y, un-fun, perhaps dangerous time, often defined by errors in judgement / planning, or unforeseen bad events. As opposed to Type II fun, which isn't all that fun while you're doing it, but makes for good stories or feels like it was fun when you remember it later. Sometimes having fun doesn't really have to be fun in the moment, and Type II tries to capture that. Or Type I fun, which is regular-old fun.OK, I give up. What does type III mean in the title?
I have at least 200 dives off a kayak, maybe more, and those are North Coast dives in some swell and nasty conditions that can creep up out of nowhere.
Here is my input on Kayak diving.
1. I would NEVER consider using a drysuit kayak diving especially one that is unzipped. Absolute no no. If you dump it and it floods you’re screwed, as you guys almost pretty much found out.
2. Using a “balanced” rig, as the new wave term has it that all the weight is attached to the rig is sub optimal for kayak diving. It is better to have a weightbelt and have your weight broken up. Not only does it spread the weight out better on the kayak so the back doesn’t “low ride” when you’re paddling, but it also makes getting the rig easier to shove back into the tank well and having a weightbelt on your body when you’re finning around the kayak doing stuff is easier when you’re not like a cork.
3. I have a personal rule that I NEVER open a hatch when I’m out in the ocean period. The anchor and line gets bungeed on top on the front. My fins are bungeed right behind the anchor on top. My weighbelt goes right under my knees layed out on top and latched over the back rest strap that goes forward so in case of a roll it doesn’t get lost. Essentially everything goes on top and gets secured.
The rig goes behind me in the tank well and is strapped down by both straps and snugged up. Mask is around my neck, and compass/computer is always on my wrists and doesn’t come off.
Putting a weighbelt down in a hatch can be a problem in that if you roll it it can hit the hatch from the inside and blow it open or it can slide into a wired spot that you can’t reach.
4. A hand operated bilge pump is a good idea but I don’t have one.
5. Always check all the straps and hatches on your kayak before use it each time just like an aviation check list and keep everything in perfect order. As soon as there’s any signs of wear or cracking replace the affected components.
6. Every kayak should have their own anchor. Never “raft up” kayaks especially in questionable conditions as one kayak that goes sideways van flip another over, or if one anchor fails then you will lose all your kayaks and come up to nothing. Each kayak needs to have their own independent anchor system.
7. Practice the flooded kayak maneuver. If for some reason your kayak gets flooded, you need to know how to get underneath it when the kayak is upside down and push up. This will empty the kayak out of a hatch hole. Then you flip it back over and secure the hatch in place and resume your outing. This is one reason why my hatches never come off once I’m paddling in the water, one less thing that can go wrong.
8. Always have your paddle leashed and make sure the squeeze connection where your paddle fit’s together is in good shape and not corroded or has a broken spring. That should be part of your check list.
The order that I use to perform a dive off a kayak goes as follows:
When you reach you dive spot, straddle the kayak sitting up and scooch forward to get your fins out and on (if you haven’t already). Sometimes I used to have my fins on even before I left the cove. While you’re straddling the kayak and up front, undo the anchor and drop it down giving yourself at least 3:1 scope in windy conditions, less if conditions are benign and you are certain they will not increase.
Slide into the water and unlatch/remove weighbelt and roll it on in the water. Reach up and unclip the rig, slide it off the back and don it in the water.
Upon return, do everything in reverse.
Kayak diving is great fun and a super efficient way to dive. Just follow a few rules to be safe and the rest is all fun.
I just want to thank Brent for posting this. I was fantasizing about cruising out there for urchin culling on a kayak in a few minutes instead of surface swimming for half an hour. Obviously nothing is as simple as it seems.
It seemed odd to me that all the Reef Check divers were in wetsuits when they obviously dive enough to make a drysuit purchase. But it's also less to go wrong, particularly with retaining buoyancy in an emergency. Because even without a boat it would have been no big deal to be stuck out there, given the direction of the current. If you could remain above the water for an hour you'd be pushed back to shore. That is a big "if", though.