SS Manasoo

Steamer Manasoo at dock

Hearing of a newly discovered wreck really gets a wreck diver’s heart pumping. In June 2018, I heard about a newly discovered wreck in Georgian Bay. Although there wasn’t much information available at first, more information gradually became available. I learned that the vessel was a package steamer, located at a depth of around 200 feet, which was a good depth […]

Straits of Mackinac, June 2023

I love the Straits. It’s always a great trip. The dives are not deep, but they are loads of fun. I always schedule this trip early in the summer so it serves as a warm up (pun intended) for deeper dives later in the season. You can do all sorts of things after the diving is done. Some divers bring their […]

In Praise of the Humble Safety Stop

Scuba diver looking at wrist gauge

Safety stops are a critical part of scuba diving safety. We all learned about them in our Open Water Diver course. The concept was reviewed and reinforced in every course after that. Yet I can’t help but feel most divers don’t truly appreciate the importance of the humble safety stop. Let’s take a look at how safety stops reduce risk and […]

“How do you get to Carnegie Hall?”

There’s an old joke that goes something like, “The absent-minded maestro was racing up New York’s Seventh Avenue to a rehearsal when a stranger stopped him. “Pardon me,” he said, “can you tell me how to get to Carnegie Hall?” “Yes,” answered the maestro breathlessly. “Practice!” For technical divers, practice is no joke. It may be cliche to say that sharp skills can […]

Shipwrecks: A Non-Renewable Resource

Technical diver exploring shipwreck

Great Lakes wreck divers are justifiably proud of the wrecks we get to explore. Unlike their saltwater cousins, wrecks in the Great Lakes, wooden wrecks in particular, remain in amazing condition even after 100 years of immersion. For me, the Great Lakes comprise the greatest collection of shipwrecks in the world. We have wooden sailing ships, paddle wheel steamers, freighters, whalebacks, […]

Preparing for Dive Class

two people sitting on beach looking at book

This is the time of year that my course schedule for the summer really begins to gel.  The holidays are over, winter has set in, people start thinking about the dive season and what they would like to accomplish this year.  Some divers set their sights on getting additional training and taking their diving to a new level. Once a person […]

Two is Company, Three’s a Crowd?

Two scuba divers underwater.

From the first days of our Open Water Diver course, we are told to always dive with a buddy. Sound advice. Furthermore, we are told that a buddy team should consist of two divers. We are specifically cautioned against diving in a three person buddy team. It’s simply too difficult to keep track of two other people while underwater. Invariably, the […]

Lift Bag or Marker Buoy?

Inflatable buoy on surface of water.

A surface marker and guideline are an essential part of a tech diver’s kit. Most people use either a lift bag or an SMB (surface marker buoy) as the marker. A reel or finger spool are two options for carrying and deploying line. The reasons for carrying these items are many. If diving in a current, divers often deploy the marker, […]