First Night Dive Magic

Who said nights were for sleeping?

“We will be diving at Simon’s Town Jetty for Diver’s Night. This is part of an international attempt at registering as many divers as possible in the water by 20:00.” I read Tony from Learn to Dive Today’s FB post. A real thumb-stopper seeing as it is something that is actually listed on my diving bucket list and you know, if not now then when? Tony quickly responded to my reply and my RSVP was confirmed.

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I arrived promptly. Divers from all over kitted up and headed for the jetty where the tide was a bit lower than expected and the ‘step-off’ a little further and shallower. “When you step off, pull up your knees so that you don’t hurt yourself in the shallow water,” was Tony’s expert advice to me. He soon learned that I have never done a night dive and he stuck by my side the entire time!

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As I stood on the edge about to take that leap into the dark unknown I suddenly felt scared. Although I have dived that specific site before the thought of dipping into deep darkness at night felt daunting, yet alluring.

Once you become fearless, life becomes limitless. I closed my eyes, took the giant step off and as soon as I hit water pulled up my legs. We were off into the dark unknown.

At night a whole new world comes alive in front of you. We were lucky enough to cross paths with a small biscuit skate. They are found all the way down to 700 meters depth and grow very slowly. Unfortunately, they are also frequently bycatch from hake trawling operations. Tony was able to capture this wonderful video while I was just hovering watching the little guy in awe. He is definitely the master of camouflage.

It was so interesting to see how animals and plants change behavior at night, but the truly magical thing about diving at night is that you need to focus on what you can see and ironically a specific focus helps you to see more and observe details otherwise easily overlooked. Having a creative soul and a busy brain my attention is almost always divided. Blame that on years of digital strategy that required me to simultaneously focus on a multitude of elements and platforms. It takes a lot of conscious reminding to stay focused during scuba as there are so many weird and wonderful things that demand your attention all at once. Night diving has really help me zoom in on a single fish or organism at a time and really see them.

After our dive, we all met under the full moon in the parking lot next to the jetty for some hot chocolate and the best white chocolate brownies I’ve ever tasted! I have it on good authority that dive night was found on cake. The one thing this experience urged me to do is add night diving to my specialties – and to book a dive with Tony. The man really knows his stuff.

The moon and saltwater is magic for the soul. When was the last time you swam underneath a full moon?

X0X0

A Dive Addict

3 thoughts on “First Night Dive Magic

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