My name is Russell, and I’m the one behind Scuba Diving Earth. I have a love of scuba diving and snorkelling and a passion for writing, so it made sense to combine the two into this scuba diving blog. The image to the left is me on a dive boat in the Farne Islands in the UK in my Dui Drysuit.
First scuba dive on the Great Barrier Reef
My very first dive was back in 1989 and was on the Great Barrier Reef. At the time I was living in Australia in Perth. I flew to stay with an old family friend who lives in Cairns and embarked on a day-trip to do my first dive!
On the way to the Great Barrier Reef I recall stopping off at Green Island for a snorkel. But when we got to the dive site I remember being extremely excited and not nervous at all. Scuba diving seemed like a simple extension from the many years I’d been a snorkeler.
The dive itself was to around 10-12 metres (33-40 feet), so very shallow. I remember enjoying every second of my short time underwater, not wanting it to end.
Scuba diving training with British Sub Aqua Club in Bishop’s Stortford
It was when I eventually returned to the UK that I started my scuba diving training with the British Sub Aqua Club (BSAC) in 1990.
To train with BSAC in the UK you need to be a member of a club and for this I joined the Bishop’s Stortford BSAC club. The training back then was quite arduous. It involved rescuing other divers from the bottom of a swimming pool and providing resuscitation on the surface of the water and on the side of the pool.
I have to say that this training has stayed with me and made me the safe scuba diver I am today.
Progression of training beginner to dive leader and diver trainer with BSAC
After I’d got my BSAC certification and completed several dives, I decided to progress my training as follows:
- Progressed to certify as a Sports Diver.
- Took my Dive Leader certification to allow me to dive deeper and up to 50 Metres (164 feet) deep.
- Trained to to teach other divers at my new BSAC Club in Saffron Walden.
- Did my Advanced Diver training with BSAC, but never got around to do the final test to get certified.
- Have done boat handling course on RIBS (Rigid Inflatable Boats).
- Taught many newbie divers to dive and then took many of them of their first dive. Some of these first dives were to one of my favourite places in the UK for diving, which is the Farne Islands. I used to arrange two yearly trips to the Farne Islands. This trip became so popular I ended up having to put on two dive boats to accommodate everyone.
- Became the Diving Officer and Treasure of the Saffron Walden Dive Club.
My diving experience around the world
I’ll give you a taster of some of my diving experiences I done around the world.
- The UK from Dartmouth, to Plymouth to the Farne Islands – I love the seals in the Farnes.
- Europe – did some great diving from Nice in France with my best friend who got in to scuba diving because I raved about it so much!
- Australia and the Great Barrier Reef – I love to see sharks and turtles here.
- The Caribbean from many of the Islands, including Barbados, Bonaire and Antigua – the sharks in Antigua are amazing!
- South Africa – of course Great White sharks!!
- America – Florida and San Diego.
- The Red Sea – my best dive sites include Elphinstone Reef for the sharks there and the Thistlegorm Wreck where I did my best ever night dive!!
The diving I love
My favourite diving is to dive with sharks and other larger creatures like turtles. Whilst I enjoy diving on wrecks, often times I am on the wreck to see what creatures I can find. This might be crabs and conger eels in the UK or turtles and other critters on wrecks around the world.
Currently I no longer dive in the UK and the cold waters, so I prefer to dive in blue warm tropical waters instead.
I hope you enjoy my blog and I always welcome comments from fellow scuba divers or snorkelers on any of my articles. Or alternatively, post a question on the scuba diving forum too. Happy Scuba Diving!!