This past weekend was REALLY warm for this time of year with highs in the upper 70’s so I thought I’d enjoy some water time as I was invited and accepted a chance to SCUBA dive for the last weekend of the season at a semi-local quarry.
After the hour and a half drive, I met my dive buddies and after greetings and catching up we started planning our dive. They wanted to “go to the bottom.” I agreed but knew this was not going to be a long of fun. The water was 68 degrees at the surface – not too bad…. As we descended past the thermocline, the temperature dropped considerably (10 degrees or so) and we eventually found ourselves at 112 ft in 50 degree water in a “murk” layer. If I had not had my light directed at one of the yellow tanks someone carried a mere 3 ft away, I would have never made it down with the others. When we arrived at our predetermined “rally point” only 3 of the 4 divers made it, so we turned the dive, started ascending, and headed to warmer water. The first dive was only 32 minutes, but a max depth of 112 ft and 50 degree water at the max depth which were my personal freshwater records.
We found diver #4. He had trouble equalizing and had to stop. We quickly vanished in the depths and he remained in the shallower (warmer) water. We decided for dive 2 we would stay around 30 ft and just swam around blowing bubbles. Dive 2 was max depth of 50 ft and lasted 48 minutes. That’s my water experience – now to the woods!
I have my first backpacking trip this fall on Friday. The weather looks perfect – no rain, light winds and cool temperatures. Hopefully the leaves will be changing down in the canyons where we will be camping. I’m going to meet a buddy at the trailhead and we will set out just before the sun sets Friday evening. We’ll hike a few miles, set up camp in the dark and enjoy “hiker TV” (a fire). Saturday we are going to explore, hike a bit, and take a different and longer route out. I have been on each of these trails previously with the exception of about 2.5 miles on Saturday, but I’ve never connected them in this order. We’re scouting out potential camping sites and timing the route for the next weekend when we will be joined by a few friends that have never been in our favorite wilderness area.
I have been saving, planning, shopping, spending, and tweaking my backpack. I plan on having just under 15 pounds prior to food and water on this trip. That’ about half of the weight I carried just a few years ago. I’m also taking several items that have been tested at home, but never in the woods. I hope to remember to take plenty of pictures and do a proper review over the next two weekends.
Thanks to all that follow and read my blog.