Sunday, February 9, 2014

Sand Hollow

Another awesome thing that I have been craving for several years is scuba diving.  BYU offers a class through Dive Utah that enables you to become open water scuba certified within six weeks.  The best part is that it was $270 that I didn’t have to pay.  I received three scholarships and a government Pell grant this final semester at BYU.  So I had all my tuition paid for, all of my text books paid for including extracurricular classes with $2000 dollars back into my pocket.  What a huge blessing!
The class consisted of textbook course work, which really was just reading about scuba safety, equipment and practices.  Then we had four weekly sessions of getting in the local public pool at the Provo Rec Center and practiced using the equipment on top of and under the water.  Then we had two final sessions called open water dives at The Crater in Midway Utah.  It is an underground hot spring inside a small hill of earth with a whole at the peak.  Imagine a mini volcano in the middle of Utah with hot water instead of hot lava.  That is basically what it was.  It was such a relief to swim in warm water!  At the rec center we practiced in the competition pool which is always a little too cold for comfort!
At Prov Rec Center
The crater wasn't super exciting though.  They had put in some under water lights and a few platforms to stand on under water and look around.  The walls were all made of rock that wasn't too exciting, but we got to dive down to just over 30 feet deep and be able to experience the pressurization effects going down and up.  It was actually pretty difficult for me to figure out the buoyancy and becoming the same as the water around me so that I wouldn't float to the top or continue sinking to the bottom.  But I got scuba certified!
About two weeks later, my roommate and a girl from my scuba class and I went down to Hurricane,Utah just outside of St. George and scubadived at a reservoir called Sand Hollow.  It was gorgeous!  The red rock formations surrounding the water and jutting out of it here and there, the sparkling water and beautiful blue sky.  It was a perfect day for diving.  Dive Utah has had several donors place things in the water for the divers to seek out and find on an orienteering course. 

Me under water with my Gear
Under water shot of the sun
My Roomate Taylor and myself
Taylor, Carol Lee, Me

We set out and ended up finding the airplane about twenty or so feet below the surface and, a toilet, and a Volkswagon bus in other places.  Pretty interesting to see an airplane down there.  It reminded me of the book Hachet by Gary Paulsen, where the bush plane pilot was trapped in the airplane in the lake.  I was relieved to find the cockpit empty though. It’s too bad that there weren’t very many fish in the reservoir.  It would have been fun to interact with them.  Anyway, pretty fun stuff.  One of my bucket list items is to scuba in a temperate place and visit a reef.  That would be awesome. 

Airplane Nose
Cesna Double Prop
The Volkswagon Bus
On The Beach after our dive
Muscle Men!

My goal is now to scuba dive in a tropical reef!  that would be soo fantastic!  It would also be very cool to scuba dive in an under water cave, with a guide of course!  

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