Not surprisingly, I don’t do much diving or teaching over the winter. These non-diving months are spent presenting at shows, planning trips and courses for the upcoming dive season and doing equipment maintenance.
This winter, I attended and had a booth at Shipwrecks and Scuba in Sandusky, OH back in November. I also presented at Our World Underwater in Chicago in February. My dive buddy Marshall Allan presented our video of the Gunilda while I presented a program about Great Lakes wreck diving called, “Great Lakes Wreck Diving: What’s Your Next Step.” The Gunilda video is a documentary Marshall I produced to tell the story of the sinking of the luxury yacht Gunilda which sank in Lake Superior in 1911. The yacht was owned by William Harkness, a millionaire whose family made their fortune investing in Standard Oil. As you can see from the picture above, she is a beautiful ship. She lies upright and very intact in 260′. My presentation about Great Lakes wreck diving discussed the various options available for those who dive (or want to dive) wrecks in the Great Lakes. We discussed types of wrecks in the lakes, deep diving, penetration diving, and mixed gas diving.
The rest of the late winter/early spring was spent organizing courses and trips. Quite a lot of time and effort goes into planning these little excursions. So far this season, I’m planning two weekend trips to Harbor Beach, MI in Michigan’s “thumb”, a 5 day trip to Presque Isle, MI (between Alpena and Rogers City), and a 4 day trip to the 1000 Island region of the St. Lawrence River. And those are only the “major” trips. I’ll add many weekends at local quarries and several more Great Lakes weekends before all is said and done. So I’ve spent many hours coordinating divers’ schedules with charter boat captains’, making motel reservations, arranging for tank fills and dealing with a whole host of other details that go into planning dive trips.
So after a long winter, I’m ready to do some diving. Now if we can only get winter to end and spring to begin!