Posts Tagged ‘Dutch Springs’

Check it out

Saturday, April 10th, 2010

With a few gear changes, it was time for the annual trip to Dutch for spring checkout.

I encourage everyone to check out their gear changes and gear service in a controlled environment (Dutch  Springs is perfect in the North East) before jumping into an uncontrolled environment like the ocean.  If there is an issue, it’s easier/ safer to walk into the water, and stand up when there is an issue rather than do a giant stride in 100 ft of water and find out there is an issue.

After a few repairs to my backup drysuit, and a new setup for side mount bailout.   I headed up to Dutch with a few friends for practice and checkouts.   I was running a little behind schedule, but we did get in two dives to check out our gear.   In addition, I just received my camera housing back from another (see previous posts) service.  I wanted to try this out also.

Our dives were in clear water (40+ vis).   The new gear worked great, and we had plenty of time to practice at the platform.   I was sidemounting my stage bottles / bailout, and working on the setup.   This takes some practice, but it is a configuration that can improve the divers profile.   It’s not for everyone.   Many agencies do not support this configuration.   With a rebreather, it makes a lot of sense.    For me this is a work in progress.

On the second dive, I brought my camera.  The housing just got back from annual service, so I wanted to make sure it worked well prior to salt water immersion.   Everything seemed to work, until I realized that the focus was set for land rather than UW, and none of the UW shots were in focus.   Oh well, the rest of the functions worked, just operator error.

In the long run, I had some great dives with Tom and Leon.   I dragged them around the quarry, and was surprised that I still knew my way.  Dutch is a fantastic place for this type of checkout.  I recommended everyone go up there in the beginning of the season, after having gear serviced.   It’s a controlled environment with lots of support.  A great place to dust off a few skills, and see/dive with good friends doing the same.   Work with your buddy and get ready for dive season.

Let’s get this diving season started!