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Posted by brianc on August 31, 2000 at 09:57:00:

In Reply to: My turn posted by seahunt on August 30, 2000 at 12:32:55:

First, let me say that seahunt's comments are the most objectively stated that I have seen here for a while. I read a lot of good/interesting comments on this board that are buried in emotional fury. I often come away from these threads thinking that someone has a lot to teach, but their style is so vicious that I would not want to be their student!
Second, let me say that I am no expert and have a lot to learn about West Coast diving. I moved out from South Florida last year. I was considered an "experienced" diver by shops, boats, and instructors there. My first couple of dives in N. CA kicked my ass! I went out and got some drysuit training (I still need more experience to be as comfortable as I am in a wetsuit, esp. on surface swims!). Now I'm about 2/3 of the way through DM training. I feel I have more to learn and told my instructor that I don't feel I should have the cert. or resposibility for students until my cold water skills are as unconciously comfortable as they are in warm water. Based on tourist divers in Florida, I used to think that CA divers were like bulls in a china shop, or reef. I now think CA divers are the most skilled and that I was just swimming in a bath tub!
Finally, the point of this ramble: The one area where I think South Florida divers have it over CA divers is nitrox use. I was surprised to read "EAN for 40 foot dives and some other things that seem a bit extreme." Nitrox is perfect for shallow dives! I get concerned when I read threads promoting nitrox for deep dives. Those are the dives where you really have to watch your PO2! CNS toxicity is not something to push the envelope on. Deeper dives on nitrox is an advanced technique. Shallow nitrox dives (esp. with shorter cold water dive times) increase safety during and after the dive. You can bet that if I'm going to wake up early dive all morning and then drive 2-4 hours home, I'll have nitrox in my tanks!

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