Published: March 10th 2009March 10th 2009
Good evening all!
This week i managed to get my Open Water PADI Diving certification! It was such a great experience and something i hope to do again and again.
The week's lessons started in the classroom with about 3 hours of theory work before we headed to a local pool where we went under water for the first time and learned some skills which we would later be tested on out in the ocean. We did the theory and pool work for 2 days before heading down South in the minibus to a beach side town called Rockingham. This was where we did our two shore dives to around 8m. There was a wreck dive here in which planes and boats had been linked together and mapped out by a rope, the only trouble was that you couldn't see further than 2m in front of you. It was a bit scary especially as it was our first time in the open water. If i'm really honest, it put me off a little bit too, but i knew that i had seen footage of beautiful coral reefs before so not all dives would be like the one at Rockingham
and this kept me going.
The last day of our course took us over to Rottnest Island where i had spent the first three days of my trip. Our class was joined by some Divemasters in Training and some other experienced divers and we left Fremantle Harbour in a fantastic dive boat and headed over the beautifully calm water to the north of Rottnest. On approaching our first dive spot, Cigar Bay, we all kitted up in our wetsuits and air tanks reading to take a giant stride off the back of the boat. It was so nice to be able to see your fins kicking around in the crystal clear blue water unlike at Rockingham where i couldn't see my hand in front of me! On descending down to our Open Water dive limit of 18m it was very clear to see that this would be an amazing experience as we sank down past fishes of all colours, shapes and sizes. We dived for around half an hour before lunch and all came up full of adrenaline and wishing we could grow gills so that we could stay down there for longer! The skipper cooked us up a
great BBQ lunch on the boat and we all had a look through the 'Fishes of Western Australia' book to make a note of what we had seen on our dive. The second dive after lunch was only around 50m away from the first dive site and was called Roe Reef. This dive was a little bit longer at 40mins as we only went down to about 12m, and after having looked in the fish book during lunch it was great to know what you were seeing in and amongst the reefs.
Very happy to be a qualified diver and i'm now waiting to do my advanced course so that i will have more skills and be able to dive down to 30m. This will certaintly come in handy when i make my trip up to the Ningaloo and Great Barrier Reefs.
After the dive course we passed by the 'Freo Doctor' and bought a well earned bottle of wine for the evening, and looked forward to kicking back on the beach the following day.
Since the dive course it's been on average around 36degrees all throughout the day, and as you can imagine, it means doing
anything more than getting yourself to the beach is really REALLY hard work...! Hey, someone's got to do it :)
On Sunday, some friends and i went up to the Ocean Beach Hotel on Cottesloe Beach for a drink at sunset and actually ended up getting a six pack of beer and staying on the beach until around 11pm when we decided to go for a swim! The water was so beautifully warm and like i said, someone's got to do it!
I'm busy planning the next stage of my travels now, hoping to go north and south of Perth before flying over to the East coast to meet a girlfriend from uni at the beginning of April to travel for 3 weeks. Pippa has already warned me that she's going to make me jump out of a plane!!!
Lots of Love from Fremantle, WA
There are more photos below