Well, I finally went diving again. (This thing we call a career really gets in the way, don't it?).
This time my buddy Mike and I chose fresh water... Dutch Springs. Nice. We got there at about 11AM, just when the power divers were finished doing it right, so we got a WONDERFUL parking space, and a picnic table right near the entrance to the water. All in all, not bad! Only had to hump the gear about 50 feet from the parking space (under a tree) to the picnic table, then walk about 80 feet to the water! Then the troubles began...
I had to wear the 7mm john/jacket combo, because the plan was 70', which takes us through the 2nd thermocline. (surface temp was about 70, then at 30' it drops off to about 58, then at 60' it drops to about 48. For those of you who live in countries that abandoned the civilized Farenheit scale in favor of the silly Celcius /Centigrade scale, that is 21, 14, and 9 degrees). But I had a very tough time with buoyancy. As I went down, the suit squeezed and at about 30' I started falling fast. This is right at the thermocline, and also at the spot where I have equilization problems with the ears. Not fun. (I also had problems later on, but in reverse... when I got to about 30' going up, I turned into a cork. Had to invert and kick back down.) All in all..... interesting. I finally managed a slow ascent with the aid of an up-line.
The second dive was MUCH nicer, as we stayed shallow (<30'), so I left the gloves and hood ashore, and borrowed Mikes Ocean Reef Neptune FFM. What a great toy. There's nothing like it... I'm in love. Anyone want to donate one to a worth cause??