Dive planning

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Posted by MHK on June 26, 2006 at 11:02:02:

Thanks all I appreciate the kind words. I think one of the most under-appreciated "skills" a diver needs to develop is the pre-dive planning. If we continue to use the dive in the instant case, ie; Osborne as an example you will see that some are suggesting that the majority of the divers stayed within the suggested recreational limit of 130', and used standard compressed air.

Those of us that have dove Osborne know full well that there isn't any meaningful amount of diving in the 120' - 130' range and that the best part of the pinnacle is beneath 130' That isn't to say that at 120' you have nothing to see, but just that the bulk of the pinnacle is below 130'.

With that in mind, you are essentially looking at a square diving profile of 120' +/-, with little, if anything above 120'. With that tells the thinking diver is that whether you have a computer or tables, for the most part there is little, if any, multi-level diving in the recreational profile. Therefore, using most of the tables available the diver is looking at approximately 5 to 8 minutes of No Decompression Limit bottom time. Does traveling all night on a boat, incurring the increased risks associated with diving pinnacles that far off shore, with the potential for swift currents and missed up lines [most don't run reels], coupled with increased narcosis; increased gas density; increased potential for C02 retention justify 5 minutes of bottom time?

It seems to me that a more sensible approach to this dive would be to spend 20 minutes or 30 minutes at depth on the proper gas, with the proper deco gase(es), proper line protocols and a unified team that is prepared to do dives of this nature. All too often, I see a collection of strong individual divers that dive solo, exceed otherwise established recreational limits, using air and accept the added risks associated with that type of diving. To them I say "Good luck". To the others that desire a different way to approach the same pinnacle, I say "there are other options available".

Two guys walk into the local pub, they each sit next to each other and share 6 beers and 6 shots of their favorite liquor. They have equal amounts of fun and after a little while they both leave. One walks to his car and drives home, while the other anticipated the stupor and has a taxi waiting. They each had the same fun, they each enjoyed the same pub, but if the drunk driver happens to make it home without killing himself or anyone else, does that suggest the plan made any sense?? This despite the fact that it might not have been the first time he drove home drunk?? Just because he may do it alot, doesn't mean it's a smart or well thought out plan..


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