[caption id="attachment_318" align="aligncenter" width="640" caption="Down around 300 FSW on the wall in Grand Cayman."][/caption]

No. It's Grand Cayman on a CCR.

(Originally posted on CCRJosh.com)

Although the bottom time of this dive was fun, it was actually the deco that made it so enjoyable. Sitting through my 2 hours of deco I had plenty of time to sit and observe and think about what was going on around me. What was going on around me? I was in the middle of what could only be considered a perfect CCR dive. My father, little brother and I had been diving together all week (Inner Space 2010) and our team was clicking, making the dives a little less stressful. The visibility was amazing, marine life gleaming all around me. Fishes, rays and a turtle swimming around these foreign bubble-less beings. We had been practicing drills and safety procedures earlier in the week, but now we were just diving for fun. I thoroughly enjoy planning and executing technical dives. All the time and effort I have put in over the years really pays off in instances like this. I had just spent about 15 min down at 350 FSW on the beautiful wall at Texas Hole, Grand Cayman. I was in no hurry to get out of the water so I took my sweet time ascending. I am usually not into "pretty fish" diving, but this dive was outstanding. I wasn't diving on an old wreck or exploring a new cave, I was just swimming weightlessly through the beautiful water observing some of God's most beautiful creations. [caption id="attachment_338" align="alignright" width="150" caption="Wonderful diving!"][/caption] All morning before the dive it had been drizzling rain. At some point during the dive it began to pour fairly heavily. Somewhere around 80 FSW I could hear the rain hitting the surface of the ocean (I love silent CCR diving!). At first this sound didn't really have an impact on me. Sometime over the next 60 min or so, I went into an almost trance-like state. The sound of the rain just about hypnotized me. As the other divers hung on the mooring line merely waiting for the excess nitrogen to be expelled from their bodies, I swam around, overwhelmed by the beauty and excitement I was experiencing. Everything seemed to slow down. It was as if my senses were hyper sensitive. There were several instances where I had a moment of concern because I thought I had been swimming away from the mooring line for the last 10 min, only to realize it had only been 60 seconds. I felt like there was just too much to take in, even with the hours I had to spend underwater with my CCR. [caption id="attachment_340" align="alignleft" width="150" caption="Looking up at the Carrie Lee"][/caption] On this dive I felt what I imagine a brand new open water diver feels when they dive in the ocean for the first time: complete awe. Texas Hole in Grand Cayman reminded me of one of the most basic reasons I love diving - I get to enter a different world, if only for a few hours at a time. I love and crave the adventure of CCR, Cave, Trimix and Wreck diving. I love how difficult it can be. I love the fact that it requires specialized training. For some reason, on this particular dive- none of that mattered. I could have spent hours and hours swimming around at 50 FSW and been perfectly happy. Although this was definitely not the most exciting, adrenaline filled, exploratory dive in my life- it will most likely remain on my list of "most memorable" for quite some time. Date: May 21st 2010 Location: Texas Hole, Grand Cayman Type: HammerHead CCR Max Depth: 353 FSW Time: 129 min

Special thanks to Doug Ebersole for acting as group photographer and allowing me to use the pictures!

[caption id="attachment_341" align="alignright" width="640" caption="Inner Space 2010 was a blast!"][/caption]