If you’re a scuba diver, then you might know how fun night diving can be. Though, if you’re still new to the scuba-diving thing, chances are you’ll feel that night-diving is scary. The good news is that you have good tips on your side! Simple and easy to do, these tips will help you conquer the underwater realm at night.
Have The Right Gear
Having the right equipment for your expedition is key. But remember: no matter what you wear to the dive, you must always have a light with you.
You’ll need two different dive lights: a primary and a backup. Just keep in mind that your primary light has to be larger and brighter of the two; regardless, both lights should be powerful enough to function when you’re underwater. But before you enter the water, check to see if both lights are working correctly prior to your journey. However, if the primary light fails and you switch to your backup, cut the dive short.
Dive At Dusk, But Stay Close And Shallow
Give yourself time before nightfall—around 10 to 15 minutes of dusk—to do pre-dive safety checks, and then enter the water while it’s still early. This gives you the added bonus of seeing night wildlife coming around to look for food, as the day animals retire for the night.
Also, be sure to stay in shallow areas of the water, so that you don’t get lost as you go deeper. Now, you might think to yourself that you’ll miss out on the sea animals swimming around. But don’t worry; you won’t miss anything, as you observe from a safe distance.
Scuba divers communicate underwater using mainly hand signals. During your pre-diving briefing, go over hand signals, or create new ones as needed, so that these methods are still fresh in the mind. Your lights can also work as a signaling mechanism, but try to use them strictly for sight and for basic attention signaling. You can use your light to say “Okay,” “Yes” or “No” with simply circling of the light, moving in up and down, or side to side. Or, you can shine the light on your hands when you’re doing a hand signal.
If you get separated from your team underwater, get in a vertical position and shine your light outward while turning a full circle, so that your fellow swimmer can see you. If you resurface and see that you’re far away from the dive boat, point your light at the boat until your crew sees you; and be sure to shine the light on yourself, so that they can easily spot you in the water.
Use Your Light Sparingly
You don’t have to have the biggest light in the ocean. In fact, some sea creatures, when disturbed, give off unique lighting. Even your boat and the moonlight would give you lighting so that you don’t have to carry a big light source. And this will serve well for the animals because big lights can intimidate them, and make them hide from you.
So you’ll see, you may not need 100% of your light source. Try cupping your hands over the light; or if your light has an LED setting, then set it to half-power. Having just the right of light will guarantee you a good show of sea life.
Mark Your Way Home
If you don’t have a boat, then chances are, you’ll have lit spots waiting for you onshore when you’re diving at night. It’s best to have two lights close to each other at your point of entry/exit, and then a third one that’s further away.
But suppose you’re diving from a boat after all? Make sure that the boat is equipped with a flashing light strobe so that you can easily find your way back. Once near the boat, shine your light on the surface, so that the crew can see you, and make sure not to collide into you.
No matter which scenario, think of it like the story of Hansel and Gretel leaving behind a trail of bread crumbs. The last thing you’d want to do is to get lost, especially at sea.
Ultimately, the idea of night dives is to have fun. Follow these simple tips, and you’ll be ready for your next underwater expedition.
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About the Author
Ashley Halsey provides her experienced writing talents in many projects countrywide and is a contributor to both Lucky Assignments and Gumessays. In her spare time, she travels, reads, spends time with her two children, and attends business training courses at Research Papers UK.