We find ourselves at the end of another year. Where does the time go? Since becoming a diver in 2010; this year, above all the previous years has been the craziest. It’s also a year that we didn’t get to do much fun diving despite having been in the water a lot. The training and gear changes have basically consumed most of our free time for diving. It’s okay though. I look at it as a means to the more advanced diving that we both want to do.
Tina and I did our first dive of 2015 on New Years day with chum club. We wished we were diving dry. It was freezing cold and not really that fun, but we did it anyway. It seems like a life time ago. It’s also the first year that we have been able to dive at least 1 time per month so there was never a long break or “offseason” if you will. Once we started diving dry in march, the diving frequency picked up. We both fell in love with diving dry, so much so that we refused to dive wet all summer. Of course there were times that we were so hot in our drysuits that we should have just dove with no suit at all. But whatever, we like diving dry.
Then there was GUE. For me the training was just what I was looking for, and I very much look forward to more in the future. The other often overlooked aspect of GUE, is the community of divers that you end up meeting. Don’t get me wrong, I’ll dive with just about anyone but I enjoy diving with other GUE trained divers most, because it’s far more structured and you basically know what you are getting into when you meet a new a dive buddy.
We also did the Dive Authorization Course (DAC) at The Meadows Center in San Marcos Texas about a month after we got back from Florida. There we met other GUE divers from the Austin area. Austin is a bit of a hotspot in Texas for GUE divers and there are two new instructors, both of which are great guys. Sam Meacham, and Jason Write. The DAC allows you the privilege of volunteering while diving in Spring Lake, a spring fed lake with lots and lots of wildlife. This turned out to be quite an oasis in the desert of normally murky water Texas dive sites. Volunteer activities normally involve underwater gardening or removing invasive plants. Basically keeping the site clean. We love Spring Lake. I’ll probably dedicate a blog about it in the future.
The later part of the year between the 3rd and 4th quarter is when we began diving doubles. This above all has possibly been the most rewarding. I absolutely hated getting out of the water to change tanks between dives in the lakes around here. At places like spring lake that also meant you had to limit the in water time since dives are scheduled in two hour blocks. Doubles are perfect for this, because the water is 20ft deep. We can do a 2+hour dive and get totally in in our zen state while cleaning up the sites, until we are so bored that it’s time to thumb the dive.
The overall growth of our diving this year was exponential, especially for Tina. It has been a fun journey to watch.