Tag Archives: Underwater Navigation Specialty

Dive 61

Date: April 24, 2013       Dive Shop:  Island Divers Hawaii, Hawaii Kai, HI.

Location: Koko Craters,  Oahu, Hawaii

Dive Type: Boat    Environ: Ocean / Salt   Conditions:  Moderate Current

Visibility: 80-90′      Air Temp:   82       Bottom Temp:  76.6      Weight:  14lbs.

Time In:  14:16    Time Out:  14:49

Max Depth:  34′       Average Depth: 28.3′     Time:   :33        Safety Stop: None

Start PSI: 2,873    End PSI: 2,253      Air/EANx:  32%

Exposure Protection: 5-Mil Full Wetsuit, Hood, Boots, Gloves

Equipment: Spare Air

Notes:

This was the second dive for the Underwater Navigator Specialty course.

On this dive I had to use a compass and locate objects on predetermined headings that were given to me counting kick cycles between the objects, while mapping the area and objects that I found. At the last object I had to use reciprocal headings from each object to find our way back to the boat

iGills Snapshot

Dive 60

Date: April 24, 2013       Dive Shop:  Island Divers Hawaii, Hawaii Kai, HI.

Location: Koko Craters,  Oahu, Hawaii

Dive Type: Boat    Environ: Ocean / Salt   Conditions:  Moderate Current

Visibility: 80-90′      Air Temp:   84       Bottom Temp:  77.6      Weight:  14lbs.

Time In:  13:09    Time Out:  13:39

Max Depth:  38′       Average Depth: 26.2′     Time:   :30        Safety Stop: None

Start PSI: 2,622    End PSI: 1,508      Air/EANx:  32%

Exposure Protection: 5-Mil Full Wetsuit, Hood, Boots, Gloves

Equipment: Spare Air

Notes:

This was the first dive for the Underwater Navigator Specialty course.

On this dive I had to use a compass and swim 20 kick cycles due north, then make a 6 point turn with each side having 20 kick cycles ending up at my starting location.  This was very difficult with the current, but I finally managed to complete it. I also had to pick an object on the sea floor then take two compass bearings on it so that I could locate the same object again on a later dive.

iGills Snapshot

Underwater Navigator Specialty

Getting lost underwater and running out of air is a major concern of mine, so I decided to do the Underwater Navigation Specialty course to make me better at navigating and finding my way underwater.

For this course my instructor was Tara with Island Divers Hawaii who also did part of my Advanced Open Water Diver course back at the beginning of March.

There was a mild current, which I had to keep in mind while trying to navigate the courses that Tara gave me to follow. I had a minor “brain fart” at the beginning when I was reading my compass incorrectly, but as soon as I realized what I had done wrong I was able to correct it and complete the pre-determined course patterns correctly.

What made it difficult was for the last part of the course, not only did I have to follow bearing headings that were given to me, making course adjustments due to the current, but I had to draw a map of the area at the same time. I can barely draw “stick figures” so I was impressed when I was able to draw a map that actually resembled our dive location somewhat. I’m not sure if anyone else would be able to follow my map and find their destination, but at least I could use it to find our way back to the boat so thats all that mattered.

Hopefully what I learned in this course will keep me from becoming lost at sea.

More Specialties to Come

Professional Association of Diving Instructors

Since getting my PADI Master SCUBA Diver rating I decided to add on some more PADI specialty classes over the next couple weeks:

  • Diver Propulsion Vehicle Specialty
  • Wreck Diver Specialty
  • Night Diving Specialty
  • Underwater Navigation Specialty
  • Peak Performance Buoyancy Specialty

This will give me a total of 10 PADI specialties. Eventually I will get all of the specialties that are available in Hawaii, unfortunately a few of the specialties I will have to travel to the mainland to get (ice diver, altitude diver, etc.). If I am going to be an instructor, I need experience in all of the specialties so why not get started on them now.

The first specialty class I will be doing will be the Diver Propulsion Vehicle (DPV) Specialty this Monday afternoon. I already own 2 of the SEA DOO Explorer X DPV’s that I use almost daily while diving so getting that one out of the way seemed like a “no-brainer” to me.

I will be scheduling the Wreck, Night, Navigation & Buoyancy specialty classes around my busy schedule over the next 2 weeks. I am hoping to have all of them finished by the 21st.

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