Education, Enjoyment and Exploration…

Archive for March, 2010

Double Lines – 3/23/10

Sorry for the long hiatus folks, but we’ve had a hectic winter! Finally I have some time to sit down and write about some of the cave diving I’ve been doing…..

The most recent was a couple of days ago with my buddy Allen, a former student who moved here from the West Coast so he could cave dive as much as possible! Say “Hi” if you see him at Cave Excursions East, ’cause everybody needs to be a dive bum at some point in their lives!

Anyways, I digress, so let me get into the fun part! As you can see from the pics it was a gorgeous day at Devil’s Eye, the sun was shining and the water looked gin clear in the run so we were hoping for some good vis in the cave. We haul stages, deco bottles and scooters down to the water, take our time getting everything together and soon enough we’re motoring down the run. I notice with pride that Allen’s trimmed out perfectly, and we head on into the Ear, which has finally cleared of the tannic and into the underground merry go round that’s the Devil’s cave system. Since Allen’s in the process of learning the cave, tonight we’ve decided to take on the Double Lines circuit, a fun swim dive, but heck we got scooters you know what I mean and we’re not averse to doing less deco….

After dropping deco bottles, we exchange nods and head into the labyrinth. Yes, the visibility is almost limitless and we settle down into the flow. After a fun ride on the gold braid, we clip off the scooters, throw in the jump and soon enough we’re motoring up the Hill 400. Vis isn’t great, but Allen and I are crossing beams so we’re lighting things in front of us and on the sides. What the heck? Someone’s laid in a jump to the backside of the Wormhole and clearly forgot about common courtesy. The line cuts off the entire middle of the tunnel and I think to myself, would it have been that hard to hook it low and run the floor? I guess so, since we have to adeptly avoid the entanglement hazard, but no worries, pretty soon we’re at the Syphon jump. After clipping off the scooters and stages, we jump again and here we are, one of my fave tunnels, Double Lines. I’m leading as I want to show Allen various things on the circuit and I drop into the zone where everything seems sharper and more distinct, the tunnel unwinding ahead of me and life is good. Out of the corner of my eye, I can see Allen’s light beam playing of the various formations and I grin, ’cause I remember my buddy Gary first taking me around here and I know the feeling very well, it’s all about swimming in our own little private nirvana.

After sharing some of the highlights of the circuit with my buddy and pointing out various jumps etc, we exit on the back side of Double Lines and begin the lazy drift back to scooters and stages. I show him a cool, little local shortcut and then we’re pulling the line and we’re out of there! It’s late and no one’s in the system so we put the hammer down on the SS’s ‘cause we’re feelin’ the need for speed and soon enough we’re decoing out in the cave entrance with big grins on our faces. We head back to the steps by Little Devil’s, clip off the extraneous gear and I pop up and ask “so what d’ya think?” And the babbling and crazy talk that goes on after a kick ass dive continues on for quite a while. Life is good…..