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Great Dive Trips at Bargain Prices with the Sea Divers

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Posted by H on January 13, 2003 at 12:20:59:

In Reply to: Re: If you had the chance to do it again posted by Karl S. on January 11, 2003 at 16:46:18:

"GUE believes in "screening" and so after you pay your money you may end up getting screwed out of your tuition without a certification when someone tells you that you werent cut out for tech diving. You will also be required to buy their brand name Halcyon gear, even if you already have your own Abyss and Ocean Mgt configurations already. You may end up certifying with TDI even though you started with GUE. It will be expensive to do this double dip payment, and to unlearn all the GUE brainwashing."

Was this written by someone who failed a GUE Tech course, or was too worried that they would fail they didn't even try? Sure sounds like it to me. Not that you would take anything here seriously, but I would pretty much disregard just about everything in the above post as being either somewhat incorrect, incorrect, obviously incorrect, astoundingly incorrect, unbelievably dangerously incorrect, and/or complete and total bull#@^#.

Just because Karl can't hack the GUE curriculum shouldn't put you off. In fact, it's the very filtering of the Karls of the diving world that makes GUE training so appealing. Take out the, errr, "ego" compensating cowboys and the kids who jump off the roof to say "look at me".

To answer the original poster's question...

If you want to do the Doria, not just a touch dive but actually "do" it, GUE is the answer. The Britannic '99 expedition speaks for itself. However, you should realize that there are no guarantees that you are physically capable of aggressive diving. A PFO, smoking, or poor physical condition are all contra-indicated in diving. Before you embark on spending a ton on gear and training, you should have a cardiologist rule out a PFO.

I examined all the options, and asked a lot of different folks before I embarked on additional "extended range" dive training. I'll save you time and effort. Call John Walker, a GUE instructor in southern California. Try as we might, we just can't honestly learn to dive on the Internet. It takes practice and training with the real thing. Why settle for just "surviving" the dives like Karl does when you can train with a team and enjoy them. I think passing through Tech-2 and Cave-1 would be a good foundation for a Doria jump. That and putting together a good team. Finding trustworthy folks willing to put in the time required to develop real teamwork is orders of magnitude more difficult than technical coursework. Karl's buddy comment is quite ironic, simply because if your buddy is part of a well trained and honed team he'll save your life. And if a guy is a CF in the water, how did he manage to pass the class in the first place (hint: the classes he took are a joke)?

I'd also take a jaunt on over to "the other board" ( and ask the same question there. Quite a bit more "technical" experience lives over there.

As for a rebreather, I'd pass. There isn't any dive in the ocean that really requires RB, so why add the additional risks? The Britannic '99 team did *all* dives on OC. They're all RB certified, but didn't feel the risk justified the gain. However, I defer to Chuck on RB matters, and I'd take a good listen to his advice.

So, in conclusion: Having the Doria as a goal is a great start. Be prepared for a three to five year ramp up. Don't just survive, enjoy. Start a team now, and get the proper training (GUE IMHO). Oh, and take any and all advice you receive on the Internet (including this post) with a boulder sized grain of salt. Go find the guys doing the dives and ask them...


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