Are you a dive boat hog?

dive boatAre you a dive boat hog? Do you know a dive boat hog? Well if you have been scuba diving for more than one trip to the islands then you probably have seen a dive boat hog. You know that person that has all their gear everywhere on the boat and is always in your way.

So how do we avoid becoming a dive boat hog? Well, with a little planning and for thought it is easy to be the best boat dive buddy around. The first thing one needs to do is know exactly what gear they will need and what they might need and pack it approximately it the way they will need it on the boat. So let us take a look at what is in my gear bag as I get ready for a normal day of boat diving.

The first thing is to lay it all out on the table so I can pack it as needed. First is the save a dive kit and any spare parts that we might need. This goes in the bag first so it sits on the bottom and it also helps the bag to stay flat so I can reach into easier. The next thing that goes in is my small dry bag as it is the last thing I will need or want on the boat and my wetsuit follows that. As you can see the things I hope I don’t need and the things I will need last are the first to go in the bag. This allows me to have what I need to get my tank ready at the top of the bag and allows me to get it together and stowed so I can get out of the way.

Next is my BCD which has my regulator and mask wrapped up in it and my fins on top. Why the fins on top, they are so easy to move and place under the seat where I will be setting up my tank. After the tank is ready the wet suit is folded and placed on my seat and the gear bag is stowed either up front or under the seat. The location depends on the boat and the preference of the crew.

joescubashackI am now ready to sit out of the way, chat with the crew or just sip on a cold soda and relax and think about the exciting day ahead.

Master Scuba Diver or Dive Master?

master scuba diverTo be or not to be? Master Scuba Diver or Dive Master? The path is not always clear, but why not take a dive down the path towards both? But, Scuba Joe why would I want both? Yoda says why not both be.
First, what is the difference between the two ratings; Master scuba diver is the highest non-professional rating you can earn, where Dive Master is a rating that allows you to be paid to dive, a professional diver. Maybe at this point in your scuba life you love the sport, but don’t want to turn your hobby into a job. But you want more out of your diving, then Master Scuba Diver is the path for you. Or maybe you want to become a dive professional but the cost, time and opportunity for work are limited by your life situation (being in land lock Colorado). You can achieve both, here is a game plan to help you be both.
Master Scuba diver is the first and ultimate goal for most recreational divers. It includes taking your AOW class and Rescue class and 5 different specialties; it requires you to log at least 50 dives. Notice I didn’t spell out which specialties, because that my diver friend is all up to you and your interest. It can truly be designed to be all about you. But, if you are thinking that say in 5 years or so you might like to change your life situation and move to the islands and make you living diving then let us merge the two paths so you reach both, or as Yoda said why not both be.
master scuba diverThe Dive Master program has a couple of scenarios that we must train, deep and search and recovery. If you are walking the merged path towards both then those are two of the five classes you should consider along your journey. Yoda, would probably add in navigation since you would be leading other divers and you don’t want to get lost. That still leaves you 2 electives to fill in with what interest you the most, be it Digital Photo or Fish Id or Underwater Basket Weaving (yes this is real)



So my friends you can have both. Yoda does


Ready for the Master Diver Challenge?

Happy New Year! Are you ready a challenge?  Sign up for the Joe’s Scuba Shack Master Diver challenge and become the best all round scuba diver that you can become.

masteJust what is a Master Diver?  A Master Diver has logged a minimum of 50 dives and has completed advanced open water as well as rescue diver along with any five (5) PADI specialty course. But this is where we change it up. In wanting to be the best and most well-rounded diver that we can be, to earn the Joe’s Scuba Shack Master Diver we have grouped specialties into 5 different sections. And  we have added 1 small thing extra specialty to ensure that we are the best and most complete master diver we can become. To receive this Master Diver rating you must complete one specialty in each of 5 different areas and be certified as an Emergency Oxygen Provider or Equipment Specialist.

  1. Any Project Aware Specialty.  This includes Peak Performance Buoyancy, Project Aware, Coral Reef, Underwater Naturalist and Fish ID. Care and concern for our aquatic world and how we can protect it sets you apart from other divers.
  2. Underwater Navigation.  Being the best all around  master diver we can be means we can navigate our way around the reef and dive sites
  3. Deep Diver or Search and Recovery.  Finding lost or buried treasure, which is every divers dream and sometimes we have to go deep to find it
  4. Nitrox/Enriched Air or Digital Photo.  A master diver can extend bottom time safely or maybe capture the memories for their friends.
  5. Altitude or Night. Because not every master diver dives during the day or at sea level.
  6. Emergency Oxygen Provider or Equipment Specialist. The best and most well-rounded master diver brings more to the party other than diving skills.

So, are you ready for the Joe’s Scuba Shack Master Diver Challenge?  Sign up today and become the best master diver that you can become.


Too Old for Master Scuba Diver?

Two times in the past 24 hours I have heard, “too old for Master Scuba Diver” or Specialty classes? I am just an old “fill in your own blank”.  But too old for Master Scuba Diver?  Too old to learn?  I keep seeing the slogan from Dive Training Magazine, “ a GOOD diver is always learning”. Or look at it this way, most of us in our “day” jobs take a training class or attend a training meeting at least once a year, we are always learning something to make our jobs easier; so why should your diving be any different?

lift bag

Maybe the Master Scuba Diver Challenge isn’t for you, but by adding on continuing educational opportunities such as Altitude Diving or drift diving, since we are going to Cozumel next month, you expand your knowledge of something that you love and enjoy doing and generally that knowledge increases or enjoyment of the sport.  Master Scuba Diver is a challenge, it includes advanced open water and rescue diver plus 5 specialties and you need to have logged 50 or more dives. By taking the Master Scuba Diver challenge you increase your knowledge and abilities in the water and greatly enhance your enjoyment of a sport you already love.

Maybe becoming a Master Scuba Diver isn’t on your radar, but as Jethro Tull sang you are never too old to learn (ok so I paraphrase a little). Dive Training Magazine’s slogan is one to take to heart, “A GOOD DIVER IS ALWAYS LEARNING”. It may not be a formal class or program such as the Master Scuba Diver, it maybe something as simple as sitting on the boat and talking about your dive with a dive master or instructor. Maybe you saw an article in the magazine or overheard something on the boat? Take the opportunity to challenge yourself and raise your skill level and your enjoyment of diving

So my friends we are never to old for Scuba


Take the Master Scuba Diver Challenge

lift bagA New Year brings new challenges and we make resolutions to better ourselves.  How about a resolution to become a better  scuba diver?  Are you ready to take the Master Scuba Diver Challenge? Do you want to take your skills to the highest levels of recreational scuba diving? Then it is time to stop day dreaming and take the PADI Master Scuba Diver Challenge.

When you earn the PADI Master Scuba Diver rating, you will have reached the highest non professional level in Scuba. It means that you have acquired significant training and experience in a variety of dive environments and the Master Scuba Diver rating sets you apart from other divers. Pick and choose your dive adventures from the many different adventures that PADI offers. knots

That is the beauty of the Master Scuba Diver program; you get to design the program and adventures you have interest in and what to explore further.  From Enriched Air Nitrox to Altitude to Digital Photograph to where ever your interest may take you.  Scheduling conflicts or a different work schedule, no worries, we can work with you to help you reach your goal of Master Scuba Diver.

What is a Master Scuba Diver?  A Master Scuba Diver is a diver that has logged 50 dives, taken the advanced open water course as well as the rescue diver course and has earned 5 PADI specialties.

Not planning any dive adventures in the near future to earn those specialties?  No problem we can do many different specialty courses right here in Grand Junction at the local lakes and a few at the crater in Utah.  We can actually teach 13 different specialties at the dive shop, some are even classroom only such as equipment specialist to make it even easier for you to achieve your Master Scuba diver rating.

What are you waiting for?  Are you ready to challenge yourself?  Are you ready to make a resolution that is fun and easy to keep? It is time to take the challenge!

Joe Adams

Want It, Live it Dive it


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