Warm water? I'll try it....finally.

Please register or login

Welcome to ScubaBoard, the world's largest scuba diving community. Registration is not required to read the forums, but we encourage you to join. Joining has its benefits and enables you to participate in the discussions.

Benefits of registering include

  • Ability to post and comment on topics and discussions.
  • A Free photo gallery to share your dive photos with the world.
  • You can make this box go away

Joining is quick and easy. Log in or Register now!

on_two_wheels

Contributor
Messages
1,289
Reaction score
27
Location
Phx are
# of dives
100 - 199
After a few years of diving (~150 dives) in So Cal, I'm finally taking a trip to try warm waters. I'm heading to Grand Cayman first week of october. I'll be staying at Morritt's Tortuga Club resort for 7 nights.

Although I'm not a DIR diver, I do dive a Hogarthian set up incl long/short hose, SPG, bp/w, etc. So....I'm thinking take the alum bp/w (40 lb is smallest I have), regs, mask and fins. For you more experienced travelers, feel free to provide opinions/suggestions since this is my first dive vacation.

We're (3 divers) definitely going to dive stingray city and Kittiwake. Any other "don't miss" dive sites? I checked cruise schedule so I'm hoping to do west end first couple days (no cruises scheduled to port). Then dive east end where the resort is the last couple days.
 

fisheater

Contributor
Messages
4,583
Reaction score
1,181
Location
Sebastopol, CA
# of dives
200 - 499
Sounds great! You'll have a wonderful time (as soon as you get over being appalled by some of the vacation-only divers).

I use a steel backplate with a 18# wing for tropical diving, but I know I normally need more weight than you do. (More bioprene and all that.)

Unless you're planning on nightclubbing it, all you'll need besides your scuba gear, is a few t-shirts, shorts, underwear and - possibly - socks.

Watch the baggage allowances closely and remember that your returning gear may be a bit heavier from being damp. Consider getting one of those lightweight digital luggage scales for your trip.

Have a GREAT time!
 

Mossman

Contributor
Messages
3,414
Reaction score
1,287
Location
SoCal
# of dives
500 - 999
No real reason to dive the west end if you don't have to. It's shallow and beaten up. The north wall is much better. Shore diving from the Turtle Farm and Cobalt Coast is worth doing, especially to save a few bucks. From Cobalt Coast you can reach the north wall after a long, long surface swim, which I had to do daily during my tech class there so don't whine. Turtle Farm is great for a night shore dive, followed by a apres-dive beer/cocktail at the bar located just a few yards from the entry point. Both sites offer tank/weight rentals and have convenient benches and a dock for gearing up and entry/exit.

Watch out that you don't get spoiled by warm and clear. It happened to me.
 

Insta-Gator

#FJB
ScubaBoard Supporter
Messages
28,592
Reaction score
39,824
Location
Venice, Florida
# of dives
200 - 499
+1 for what Mossman said. We were there in June. I took my SS plate because I chose to use my 3mm suit rather than a shortie or hotskin.

You'll make this an annual trip from now on if this is your first warm water experience. Have fun, dive safe. :thumb:
 

on_two_wheels

Contributor
Messages
1,289
Reaction score
27
Location
Phx are
# of dives
100 - 199
Funny you mention that....I was just debating my weights. I've got NO clue how much to start with. I currently use 22 lbs (SS plate and weighted STA, 10 lbs of lead) when diving my Fusion drysuit and MK2 undergarment. I'm thinking if I take the steel plate instead of alum, I would only need to add a handful of lbs. Luggage is on wheels anyway and I'll be well under the luggage weight since other than my gear, just light clothes and flip flops. :D
 

TSandM

Missed and loved by many.
Rest in Peace
ScubaBoard Supporter
Messages
36,349
Reaction score
13,637
Location
Woodinville, WA
I use a SS bp, 3 mil full suit, and 2 lbs on the cambands for diving in Hawaii (or at least I used to, until I realized I was happier diving dry).

That 40 lb wing is going to drive you crazy, though -- you're going to have very little air in it (just enough to compensate for a thin suit, if any, and 5 lbs of gas) and it's all going to up in the top of the side pontoons. You'll have to work to vent it.
 

macado

Contributor
Messages
1,347
Reaction score
851
Location
Salem, MA (North of Boston)
# of dives
1000 - 2499
I usually bring my SS BP and 32# HOG Wing when diving in tropics. With a full 3mm I don't need any weight. Like others said, the 40lb lift might be a bit too much but it's the end of the world.

Depending on your wetsuit, you might want to put a couple weights on the cambands and not bother using a weight belt. A 2lb weight on top or bottom of your tank can help your trim, if needed.

My backplate and wing also pack well and fit in carry-on. If you take them apart it may be easier for packing them. I can comfortably fit my reg, wing, backplate and 3mm wetsuit in a carry-on bag. I hate checking bags.
 

on_two_wheels

Contributor
Messages
1,289
Reaction score
27
Location
Phx are
# of dives
100 - 199
Well, my only options for wings are 40 and a 56 lb doubles wing. Not buying a new wing just for the trip and no desire to rent a jacket bcd. Guess I'll just have to deal with it. I'm thinking I'll take the aluminum plate with the weighted STA. That should provide nice trim and if needed, throw a bullet or 2 lb weight on each hip. I'll just have to deal with the venting issue but I'll be so stoked being able to see more than 30 feet, I doubt I'll care that much. :D
 

redstrom

Contributor
Messages
145
Reaction score
0
Location
Center City, Philadelphia
# of dives
I just don't log dives
Warm water you're gonna hate it........... NOT!

I second diving North! I'd do all diving there if I could. The walls are more spectacular with sharp drop offs vs sloping walls in the South and West. Depending on the weather/wind it can be tricky getting out there. If you make it out, the current can be pretty strong. Last trip to GC we weren't able to dive North at all... huge disappointment.

West is still great, and better than many other places in Caribbean. Redsail run the cattle boats from 3 major hotels on 7 mile beach. Solid operation, with one or two really great dive guides (I learned more from one particular DM on a night dive then I did in high school about marine life), but very crowded. Plus you have very little saying in what site you will visit. Several six packs are operating from the public beach north of the governor's mansion up the road.

We got blown out from the West at one point and did a bunch of dives on the south coast, didn't particularly care for that side of the island (then again I only dove 4 sites).

Never dove the east which is less crowded. Went there once but wind forced us to head way south and west... There's a bit of a drive going from east to west.... needs to be taken into account.

There are a few good shore diving/freediving/snorkel spots 1) north of 7 mile beach before the turtle farm with some cool mini walls; 2) In town (just south of the cruise ship launches) with some nice corall tunnels (can think of the name of it ontop of my head).

Finally... GC is expensive as hell so pack the big wallet.

Heading back myself in December -- can't wait !

Rik
 

redstrom

Contributor
Messages
145
Reaction score
0
Location
Center City, Philadelphia
# of dives
I just don't log dives
Re equipment, I actually lug my ss b/p plus STA with the 6 lbs weight in my suitcase which is enough weight for me (3mm shortie) so no need for weight pockets. Pair that with a Halcyon eclipse 30 lb wing and long hose!
 
https://www.shearwater.com/products/peregrine/

Top Bottom