It's about diving. And cats.

Me diving

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Ginnie Shakeout Dive

We took a redeye on Friday night. On the last trip, Rob and I discussed the idea of not diving the day of arrival on a longer trip. But Ted wanted to do a shakeout dive on Saturday since class started Sunday, sort of. So then I had the option of joining them or not. So of course I agreed to go. We headed to Ginnie after a rather slow start, getting our gear together at EE. It was crazy windy out yet also uncomfortably hot. At least it was by the time we were in our drysuits. I started to get into my rig and felt that something on my arm was snagged on something on my strap so I pulled my arm back out and realized just a moment too late that it was my wrist seal that was caught. Ahhh. So of course when I looked it over, there was a significant hole in the seal and a bunch of little nicks around it. The tear was semicircular in shape so I am sure it caught on a latch on my light canister. I was using a different, bigger canister so the geometry of getting into my strap was different plus my usual canister has a ring of inner tube around the latches... Never considered this as a benefit of the inner tube. I almost had a meltdown at this point. I was so annoyed that I had gotten pretty much completely geared up even though I was steaming hot and astink with plane funk, and now I couldn't dive. We didn't even have any duct tape around :)

So I sat out the dive and headed to EE (after leaving Doug a very sad voicemail about my predicament). Rob told me to get a seal and the chemicals to replace the seal and that he could do it tonight. I got to EE and found Dan, who was of course super helpful. He was hooking me up with the required chemicals and tools and then asked if he could actually see the tear. He thought it could be patched. So we hatched a scheme to patch it, go back to Ginnie and test it out, and only if that failed would Rob replace the seal. So about 30 minutes later I left with a patched suit plus everything I would need to replace the seal if it came to that. I returned to Ginnie and waited for the boys. I passed the time transcribing some sudoku puzzles into my wetnotes (to stave off deco boredom). I met a pretty caterpillar while I was doing that. It was sort of exotic looking, so I didn't pet it. But I did snap a picture.

Eventually the boys emerged from the water and I asked if either wanted to do a dive with me, to test my suit. Ted had just done a weight check and had no gas. Rob was gracious enough to offer his tanks to Ted, so Ted and I went for a dive. I really just wanted to test my seal, so told Ted I was happy to do anything including just going into the gallery and playing around in there. Ted ran the reel and we went through the ear. I like going through the ear but we basically never do anymore because I prefer eye deco. So I was excited. The running of the reel was interesting and definitely not how I would have done it :) Ted didn't hide from the flow quite as much as I try to when I run line through the ear. I was just glad that I wasn't the one that would have to pull the reel at the end :)

Once at the mainline we meandered through the gallery. I considered suggesting we just hang out there but before you know it we were staring through the lips and Ted looked ready to go. So in we went. Fun as always. When we came out into the next room, before the keyhole (does that room have a name? it really should), we saw light coming out of the keyhole. So we hung out in there until the other team passed. At this point it did not seem worth the effort to go through the keyhole since we'd just have to turn right after. So I suggested we just hang out in there. We swam around in there for a minute and then turned it. The ride out was quick and uneventful. Ted picked up the reel and as we approached the chute, I reminded him to vent before entering and waved bye bye. I looked at the line and shook my head. I inched my way up to the thirty foot spot and paused there. I could see Ted's light behind me but not much else, since he had run the line into this little alcove that he was in. So I moved to the log so I could see if he needed a hand. I could see him working on the line and just hoped I wouldnt have to go down to help him, since it looked like he was getting worked by the flow. Eventually he made it up to me and he handed me the reel as I pulled the primary tie (which was right by the log. Weird, huh?). I gave him the "phew" signal. After another minute on the log, we headed up and swam back to the stairs, where Rob was waiting for us. After getting out of the water, we headed to Newberry for some BBQ for dinner. Yum yum.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Being able to go in through the Ear and deco in the Eye would be the only thing that would ever make me even vaguely consider not running a primary line. And I'm with you about the Gallery; everybody rushes through it, and so far, I think it's some of the prettiest passage in that cave!