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Bainbridge -- Jan 6 2008 - 36F water in the quarry
jfhuard - 1/07/2008 7:34 PM
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Category: Travel
Comments: 4
Bainbridge -- Jan 6 2008 - 36F water in the quarryRob, Kevin, Jason and I went to BSC in Bainbridge, PA this weekend. Our primary objective was for Rob to complete his final AI OW exam, and then, temperature permitting, a couple of chilly willy dives.... It was my first time diving in the winter.

Let me start by saying that it was a beautiful sunny day, with air temperature around 45F. The water surface temperature was 40F and dropped quickly to 37F by the time we reached 5ft... Let me tell you that I was pretty well insulated with cold weather undergarment but it was ^%#$%^@ cold!!! I was surprised that my face could easily deal with the cold water. However, it was not the same for my toes and fingers... Next time I go in such cold water, I`ll make sure to have dry gloves and a thicker pair of warm socks...

Our first 30 minutes in the water was for Rob`s AI exam. Jason and I played students while Kevin was evaluating Rob`s instructor skills. We did a training dive with fin pivots (buoyancy control) and BCD removal and donning at the surface. The worst was when Rob was telling us how great we did... We were lectured standing in 40F water for 20 minutes...

After the exam and debrief were over, we did a couple of fun dives: the first one was at 90ft, 21 mins with bottom temperature of 36F (yep, only a few degrees above freezing...) and the second one at 47ft for 36 mins. Visibility was about 25ft and there was a foggy bottom starting at about 85ft. We didn`t see much besides a couple of old boat wrecks and platform. We were looking for a cement truck but couldn`t find it.

My first dive went fairly well, except for my frozen toes; fortunately the shelter was heated so we warmed up during the surface interval. My toes were so cold it took about 30 minutes to bring back their normal color... That was probably caused by us standing in the cold water for 20 minutes during Rob`s debrief... Anyway, after about an hour we were warm again and we headed back to the quarry.

My second dive didn`t go as well. After about 20 minutes at 45ft, we ascended to about 30ft and I couldn`t descend anymore as I started to have problem equalizing my left ear. After a couple of minutes trying to equalize, we decided to take it easy, swimming back to our entry point slowly ascending. Fortunately, we ascended very slowly between 30 and 20 ft and I could equalize properly. Everything was back to normal by the time we were doing our safety stop. Cold water can play tricks on your Eustachian tubes...

Overall, a long but fun day. We left at 7am from Sterling, VA and came back at 7pm. Rob completed successfully his exam (Congrats Rob!) and we discovered a new quarry in the area.


MostestGanpa - 1/17/2008 11:15 AM
I did all my certification of Bainbridge and have become familiar with the quarry. You guys sounded like you had a great time and your support of one another is great.... If you can dive cold "wet" you can dive... Dive well Mostest Ganpa
Buzo - 1/08/2008 7:47 AM
Congrats Rob. I thought that you guys were going to Lake Rawlings last weekend. Couldn`t go with because my daughter was very sick. Maybe next time. Kevin said there is a chilly willy next month.
KevinD - 1/08/2008 6:47 AM
Jason and I found the bulldozer. That was when you had problems with your ears. You did not miss much.
ghostdiver - 1/07/2008 8:50 PM
I have to say thanks again for coming out and showing support for my endeavor! Good Dive Buddies are hard to come by and I must say that you rank amongst the best! I don`t know if anyone could have talked me into diving in 36deg water! LOL...! Regards, Rob