Water

Ridding Palau of Explosive Remnants of War

Dive Guide Harris Moore lends his account of a nail-biting experience, diving with trained demining professionals, as the team sets out to remove undetonated explosives from a shipwreck near the Palauan island of Koror. The team works carefully in safely documenting and removing the bombs from the busy harbor.

DEMA Show 2011 New Product Highlights

DEMA Show 2011 featured new gear from both new and established manufacturers. While there was no single category that saw a major advance from multiple companies, like dive computers last year, DEMA 2011 showcased many new products that came in smaller sizes and/or higher quality than the versions before them.

Sony NEX-5 & Aquatica AN-5 Underwater Housing

Sony’s innovative NEX-5 mirrorless digital camera becomes submersible with Aquatica’s AN-5 underwater housing. A powerful combination for the aspiring underwater photographer or the pro looking for a backup solution. This compact system foreshadows the lightweight, cutting-egde technology of the future, while offering the flexibility of a classic interchangeable lens camera.

The Cayman Islands, Crown Jewel of the Caribbean

Explore the Cayman Islands, where gin-clear waters make for mind blowing scenery both above and below the turquoise blue waters. Three unique islands make up this Caribbean gem, collectively offering a diverse mix of adventurous activities and serene escapes that any discerning traveler can appreciate. Nowhere else in the world is the dive industry as healthy and looked after as in the Caymans Islands.

Diving the Shipwrecks of Vancouver Island, Canada

There is nothing quite like the thrill of seeing the ghostly image of a shipwreck appearing out of the gloom in deep, dark water. The Canadian Province of British Columbia, as beautifully gorgeous underwater as it is on land, has some of the finest coldwater shipwreck diving in the world. Providing a unique blend of history and a modern day adventure, AtlasOmega’s Calvin Tang and John Rawlings describe their dives on three of the Province’s shipwrecks with a select team of technical divers.

Shearwater Research to Develop Scrubber Sensor

Shearwater Research gets the go-ahead from the United States Navy to develop the world’s first sensor system capable of measuring a rebreather’s remaining scrubber capacity, a landmark that would greatly improve the safety of recreational, commercial and military closed circuit rebreathers.

Armored Transport: Think Tank Photo Camera Bags

Think Tank Photo offers a smart tandem of camera bags for the traveling photographer: the cavernous StreetWalker HardDrive camera backpack for the long-hauls, and the fast, purpose specific Sling-O-Matic 20 sling bag for day trips.

2011 Oceanic VT 4.0 Dive Computer Review

The Oceanic VT 4.0 is a rugged, time-tested workhorse of a dive computer. It can read tank data wirelessly from four different transmitters, and employs an entirely redesigned software interface that allows for intuitive control on the surface and ease of use in the water.

Rugged Comfort: Santi Enduro Drysuit

Technical & Commercial Diver, Chris Borgen, puts his gear through hell on a regular basis. The Santi Enduro, true to its name, is the suit of choice for the dirtiest of jobs and the most frigid waters. Don’t let the rugged materials fool you though, the Enduro is as comfortable as it is tough. Where other suits fall short, Santi delivers.

Scuba Diving the Island Nation of the Philippines

Underwater Photographer and Filipino native, Stewart Sy, offers a broad guide to diving the remarkable island nation of the Philippines. Stewart divides the country, consisting of a mind-boggling 7,107 individual islands, into three distinct geographical locations. Greatly familiar with two of the three regions, Sy takes us on a journey to a dozen world-class dive destinations.

Analytical Industries TruMix 4001 Trimix Analyzer

Though not the sexiest part of the dive equipment ensemble, gas analyzers are an indispensable tool in the dive industry. Whether you’re a dive shop or a tech diver, you’ll want to know what you’re putting into those scuba cylinders. For recreational divers looking to extend bottom times or depths, you’ll have to advance past breathing air eventually.

The World’s Youngest Antarctic Diver

AtlasOmega interviews Evan Bozanic, who at eleven years old became the world’s youngest person to dive in Antarctic waters (30 degrees Fahrenheit). At the age of twelve, Evan became rebreather certified while designing and building his own custom, closed circuit rebreather (CCR), for a science fair project. Now at age thirteen, Evan has dived off of four continents, and plans to be the youngest person to reach the waters off of all seven. He currently lives with his family in Fountain Valley, California.

UEMIS Zurich: the Social Dive Computer

Switzerland-based Uemis makes smart dive computers that feature solar panel technology as well as an integrated “social dive log” on the desktop software side of things. The “Zurich” dive computers, if fully utilized out of the water by a critical mass of users, could end up providing a new type of online community for divers around the world.

Light & Motion SOLA DIVE Light Review

Light & Motion has been known for producing high-end underwater housings and lighting systems for over a decade. Recently, the company has brought their lights to the center stage of the dive industry by launching a new series of hands-free dive lights, their revolutionary SOLA line of submersible lights.

DEMA Show 2010 Highlights

Highlights of the DEMA Show 2010 – The dive industry makes a rebound after shrinking due to the economic recession. Many new dive computer models are announced and color OLED displays are becoming more common across brands. Rebreathers continue their push toward the mainstream by taking form in recreational configurations. Dive lights are making quantum leaps forward in terms of burntime and reliability as LED technology has finally arrived.

The Search for Deep Cold-Water Corals

Mention the word “coral” and most people will conjure up an image of tropical reefs, bathed in the bright sun and covered with a huge variety of corals in gin-clear turquoise water. Few realize that most corals actually dwell in cold, deep water far from the sun.

Interview with Underwater Filmmaker Howard Hall

Howard Hall has spent over thirty years making underwater films that have inspired millions of people to learn more about the underwater world. In this interview, Hall describes the many challenges and complexities involved with making underwater films, including working with IMAX 3D technology, planning and logistics, working with marine wildlife and more.

Underwater Exploration: Prince Rupert, Canada

All was silent except the soft lapping of the waves against the hull and the sound of my steady breathing into my Closed-Circuit Rebreather. Earlier we had asked about this site and had received the exciting answer, “As far as we know, no one’s ever dived it…”

Scuba Diving the Golden Reefs of Bali

Indonesia has the most coastline of any country in the world, which is why it’s easy for Bali to be overlooked as one of the finest dive destinations in the country. As the only island among 17,508 that is predominantly Hindu (rather than Muslim), Bali’s residents are friendly and welcoming to foreigners. With dazzling coral reefs to enjoy in the water and delicious cuisine to indulge in topside, the island and international gateway does not disappoint.

OLED Shearwater Predator Dive Computer Review

An in-depth look at the industry-leading technical dive computer made by Shearwater Research. The “Predator” dive computer comes with an advanced OLED display, is depth rated to 450 feet, employs an intuitive user interface and can be used with any combination of oxygen, nitrogen and helium.

Lighten Up with Ultralight Buoyancy Arms

A key to producing beautiful underwater photos is to mount strobes far away from the lens to avoid “backscatter” (light bouncing off of particulate matter between you and the subject). Underwater photographers depend on strobe arms to do this. This set from Ultralight also helps with the camera’s buoyancy.

Pacific Northwest Scuba Diving Guide

Divers from around the world set out to dive the cool, emerald waters of the Pacific Northwest to witness shipwrecks that few have ever laid eyes on, and to photograph marine life that is truly unique to this part of the world. Nowhere else can a diver find a Giant Pacific Octopus or Wolf Eel year-round, with as much regularity as the divers commonly do in Puget Sound and off the coast of British Columbia. Winter brings about frequent encounters with Harbor Seals who are as playful as they are curious about the bubble-making visitors. Though extremely rare, Sixgill Shark[...]

The Aquatic Wilderness of Nootka Sound, Canada

[slidepress gallery=’nootka-sound’] Thousands upon thousands of bright pink and red strawberry anemones fill the underwater seascape, as clusters of giant, white cloud sponges protrude proudly off of the giant boulders that rest precariously upon a slope that wanders off into the abysmal depths. Above, a tinge of green light reminds us that there’s a world above and a curious Sea Lion darts to and fro, silhouetted by the backlit, emerald surface light. But, our adventures lead us deeper yet. Descending down to the limits of recreational diving, I spot a Puget Sound King Crab, hunkering down in its impenetrable armor,[...]

The Giant Pacific Octopus

Midway through the dive I saw what we were hoping to find – a small opening in the rock face with a trail of crab and clam debris falling away from it like an expanding fan. Pausing by the opening of the den, my light briefly danced around the interior – someone was home! A large, rectangular eye surrounded by a dense tangle of suckers and arms peered back at me, the large mantle moving in and out with each breath.

Hollis F1 Fin Review

Fins are where the rubber meets the water. Given that human-powered propulsion gets most of us around underwater (scooters are fun too), fins are an integral part of a diver’s gear kit. A few years ago I offered up a comparative review of a number of good performing fins, including the Mares Plana Avanti Quattro, ScubaPro Jet fin, ScubaPro Twin Speed, ScubaPro Twin Jet, Atomic Aquatics SplitFin, and finally, the Apollo Bio-Fin and Bio-Fin XT. The winner in that review (for best cold water fin) was the Apollo Bio-Fin XT – which had just enough thrust, ergonomics and maneuverability to[...]