The Dive Season Begins!
The dive season starts off on the right note with the Season Opener party at the shop on Tuesday night, May 14 from 6-8 PM.
Share your dive stories of those great warm water dives from your travel destinations of the past winter, check out the reconfigured shop and classroom set up and pick up the 2013 Summer Dive Schedule.
2013 Summer Dive ScheduleThis summer MadisonScuba has over 20 Tuesday Night Adventure Dives (shore dives) planned along with several boat dives, weekend trips and day trips to area dive locations. Our traditional Advanced Training weekends of June 28 – 30 and September 27 – 29 at Lake Wazee in Black River Falls will have some exciting new twists to them. Pick up the entire summer schedule at this event. sign up online now – The annual Monona Terrace Clean-up Dive, part of the “Take A Stake In The Lakes” project, takes place from 10am – 3 pm. We’ll be making 2 dives – 10am and 1pm – to clean up the garbage from the shore area of Lake Monona. Everything from cans and bottles to chairs and tables from the Monona Terrace are cleaned up each year. Yes, even tires are still found at the bottom of the lake where we bring them up and recycle or throw them away in a proper place. Free gear rental and free air are included for this event. Please reserve yours today by signing up on the website.
Tuesday Night Adventure Dive Rental SpecialWhile the rental rate for a complete set of gear for the Tuesday Night Adventure Dives remains at $35 (what a deal!) a special SEASON PASS is available for $279. This gets you rental equipment for as many of the Tuesday Night Adventure Dives as you want to dive. If you make all of the dives, it’s less than $14 per dive! That’s incredible. This offer is only available until June 1 and is only for the Tuesday Night Adventure Dives.
See you on Tuesday night at the Season Opener.
Let’s get wet!
New Look of the Shop
The shop at MadisonScuba has been in a transformation for the last couple of weeks. We have a new classroom, the pool is gone and the retail space has been enlarged (former classroom space). Bigger brighter displays of BCDs, masks, wet suits and accessories are in place with the finishing touches being completed. Overall, it will function better for all facets of the growing MadisonScuba shop.
We have added Tilos to our in stock brands of gear. They have great mask designs, innovative regular designs and creative fin technology. The price point of their products are very competitive while maintaining a quality product. We are very excited to bring you the Tilos brand. Stop out to check out the selections.
A new shipment of SF-15 X-Pert Zoom Z3 fins has arrived. New colors accents and even a couple of the white and pink sets are in. The staff loves diving the TUSA fins, especially those of us with tired knees. The split fin and 27 degree bend technology gives us great relief without compromising on thrust and control.Several new TUSA masks including the popular Freedom One that uses TUSA’s Freedom Fit technology to fit many shapes of faces, are now in stock.
Lavacore has retooled the fit and sizing of the popular Lavacore undergarment line. We have shipments coming in each week and can special order one or several pieces for you. A great layer to wear under your wetsuit to provide thermal warmth in and out of the water along with making it easier to don your wetsuit.
Stop into the shop this week to check out the new digs and gear. We are open M-Th from 5-9 pm and Sat from 9 am – 4 pm.
Let’s get wet! – Brian
The Ghost Ship Festival has many informative sessions dealing with shipwrecks around the Great Lakes. This year’s festival will document such wrecks as the 300’ wooden bulk carrier Australasia which now lies in 25’ of water just off the beach at Whitefish Dunes State Park in Door County. The New York, a 280’ wooden steamer that foundered in a violent storm on October 1, 1910 in Lake Huron is also the focus of a session. She now lies in 90’ of water in Thunder Bay near Alpena, Michigan.
Lake Michigan Wrecks
“Shipwrecks of Muskegon County Michigan” is a session that deals with five wrecks off the central eastern shore of Lake Michigan. The highlight in this group is the whaleback steamer Henry Cort which lies broken and scattered along the Muskegon north breakwall in 50’ of water. The other ships included in this presentation are the Alpena, Muskegon, Salvor and the LC Woodruff.
The final session of the festival deals with the wreck of the self-unloading barge EMBA. Built as a schooner barge in 1890, she was converted to a self-unloading barge in 1923. In 1932, she was towed out into Lake Michigan off Milwaukee’s North Point and scuttled. She now lies in 170’ of water.
The Ghost Ship Festival exhibition hall opens Friday at 3pm and continues until 5pm. It reopens Saturday morning at 8am until the show closes at 7pm. This is a great place to find t-shirts, information on wreck dive charters and other wreck diving interests. Several marine archeology clubs have information on their groups as well.
With my background as a merchant marine working on ships on the Great Lakes for many years, as well as my time on the Great Lakes serving in the US Coast Guard, and my interest in wrecks and wreck diving, I have found this to be a very informative festival. The $25 ticket price for admission to all the sessions is well worth it. Hope to see you there.
by Andy Pressnell, Divemaster, MadisonScuba
For more information on the festival go to www.ghost-ships.org.
Many of the staff are headed to Chicago this weekend for the ‘Our World Underwater’ trade show. Seminars, trade show floor, gear exhibits and more good old fun will be had. The training and education that we receive each year at this event will enhance your learning experience when you take a class with MadisonScuba.Of course that means that someone has to stay back and staff the shop on Saturday from 9am – 4pm. JoAnn has graciously volunteered to do that this year. So come on in and get some good deals from JoAnn while the others are off getting educated. Snorkelers (or anyone for that matter) – We have a great accessory package sale – mesh backpack bag, neoprene mask strap cover, antifog, and drybox for $29.95. Add a full jumpsuit skin for $25! What a deal!
Until next time, let’s get wet!
35 Models of Masks
If you are looking for quality snorkeling equipment as you get ready to escape Wisconsin’s cold and snow, MadisonScuba is the place for you. We have over 35 different models of masks in stock to help you find the one that fits your face. We specialize in Cressi and Tusa masks. Cressi masks are consistently chosen #1 in surveys. Stop in and spend some time with one of our water specialists who will help you find the right mask for you. No matter what your face size/shape, we are confident you will find something that will fit.
We don’t sell them for a reason. Just because your feet are a certain size doesn’t mean the mask they put in that box will fit your face. Also, the new crystal silicon mask skirts on the Cressi masks will blow you away with their softness and ability to seal to your face. Plus, they will last much longer.
Dry Snorkels!After you find that perfect mask, browse our large selection of dry and side draft snorkels in colors to match your mask. We can also help you with fins, skins, defog, mesh carrying bags, and more. Everything to prepare you for your snorkeling getaway.
Where have you been?
Stop in and see us. We’d love to hear about your vacation plans. Feel free to ask about some of the places we have been as you start to plan your next great escape.
Sign up here for the Snorkeling pool class before you go on that trip.
Or Plan Your Dive and Dive Your Plan
Remember back to your first certification when your instructor went through the dive tables? Pressure groups … surface intervals … residual nitrogen with all the warnings on the back of the dive table about not staying down too long, diving in cold water, flying after diving, and more.
Or, if you have been certified in the last couple years, you were taught how to use the eRDP.
Oooo… the brain strainLet’s bring back some of those painful memories and perhaps make it more fun this time. How many of you can figure out the ending pressure group after a dive to 60 feet for 45 minutes with a one hour surface interval? And to make it just a little harder, what’s your ANDL for a second dive to 50 feet? By the way, what does ANDL mean?
There was a reason your instructor went through all that information, and probably more than once. It was to help you become a safe diver. Without creating a dive plan that you have verified through a dive table, the eRDP, or a dive computer, you are putting yourself at greater risk for an emergency, injury or worse. It takes only a few minutes to check your tables, or press a couple buttons on your dive computer to make sure the dive you are planning is within acceptable limits.
The most important part of all of this planning is to then dive your plan.
Too many divers simply follow the dive leader with the expectation that they will lead a safe dive. Unfortunately, this isn’t always true. That is why it is important for you to check your own dive plan, just like you check your own air.
Use those skills or lose themYour dive tables and eRDP is like anything else; if you don’t use it, you lose it. We have a class scheduled for Tuesday, February 12 starting at 7 pm. Come in and we will review your dive tables or eRDP’s with some sample problems, explain the R.A.T. shuffle, and get you back up to speed on your dive planning. Never tried an eRDP? We have a demo you can try. If you are Nitrox certified, feel free to bring along those tables and we will be happy to review AED, oxygen exposure, and anything else you want to review.
Dive computers tooThat same night we have a dive computer class starting at 6:30. So if you already have a dive computer, but feel you aren’t getting the most out of it, come in and let us help you figure it out.
Dive tables … eRDPs … dive computers. They are all great tools to help you plan safe dives. But, they only work when you know how to use them. Stop into MadisonScuba and let us help you become a safer diver in 2013.
Scuba lessons, scuba certification, beginner diver, what does it all mean?
When just starting out in any activity you seek expertise, knowledge and a teacher that can point you in the right direction down the path to success. Introducing people to scuba through beginning scuba lessons, PADI Open Water Certification, is one of the most satisfying things we do at MadisonScuba.
It’s as easy as 1, 2, 3.
1 – Classroom – Two sessions of learning what scuba diving is all about from the equipment used to basic safety to the skills developed while diving. Both sessions are conveniently held at the shop in Sun Prairie.
2 – Pool – Two sessions of actually putting the lessons you learned in the classroom into practice. In the confines of a pool (the new Sun Prairie High School pool), you learn and practice real diving skills.
3 – Checkouts – Two sessions of actual diving demonstrating your understanding of the lessons you learned in the classroom and pool. These sessions take place in ‘Open’ water – a lake or the ocean – either seasonally here with MadisonScuba or by referral on your vacation in a warm water destination.
Complete these three steps (with MadisonScuba) and you qualify to become a PADI Open Water Diver.
Sign up here for the start of your next adventure!
Let’s get wet!
We have had so many inquiries with those two questions, we are going to create a page on the web site for those recommendations with space for your experiences with the locale or shop.
Do you have a favorite place to dive with a favorite shop/team to dive with? Let us know about it! Send Brian an email, email@example.com, with all the details.Do you know about Scuba Earth? Scuba Earth is a PADI driven web site that is sort of a Facebook for divers. I know, just another social media site that you need to take up your valuable leisure time. The difference with this site and the others is that it is for diving and divers.
Simply go to www.scubaearth.com, sign-up for an account, create your profile and find your buddies.
This allows you to talk diving with others without having to have photos of what someone just ate, what their children are doing today and all of the other stuff that happens on Facebook. Unless of course the aforementioned things pertain to the great dive vacation in Fiji!
You can link your posts to Facebook and Twitter if you like, or not. Search for Madison Scuba and join our crew.
Until next time, let’s get wet!
New for 2013 – We are offering ERF (Emergency First Response) and Enriched Air Diver (Nitrox) on a monthly basis. ERF class will be the first Monday of the month and Nitrox will be the third Monday of the month.
These classes both start at 6:30 pm and run until 9 pm. You must register for the course either online (use the calendar tab), call the shop or stop into the shop.
Emergency First Response (EFR) is a prerequisite for Rescue Diver but should be considered a must have certification for all divers. Along with CPR and rescue breathing for our sport, Basic Life Support, Triage of injuries, Care and prevention of Shock, Spinal injury management, AED (automatic External Defibrillator) and basic first aid with kit development are subjects that are a part of this course.
- You do not have to be a diver to take this course. It is open to anyone who wants to learn more and be able to assist in a medical emergency.Enriched Air Diver (Nitrox) is a great certification to have if you are planning multiple dives over multiple days. Dive tables and computers tell us how much theoretical bottom and surface interval time we have as we dive. When you do that math, you can’t cheat. You get what you get. Sometimes you are stuck with a longer surface interval (too much nitrogen to off gas) or a shorter dive (to much residual nitrogen) than you would like. With the use of Enriched Air (more Oxygen in the mix) you are able to theoretically increase your dive time or decrease your surface interval or make that extra dive during a day. There are some trade offs but the use of Enriched Air can make multiple dives and/or on multiple days safer for you.
- You do have to be a certified Open Water diver and 12 years old in order to take this course.
We hope you take advantage of these most popular specialty courses this year.
Let’s get wet!
It’s a blizzard in Wisconsin today. Not the greatest conditions to be out and are about in, so stay home, drink hot chocolate and dream of warm water diving!
The shop is closed tonight but will be open 9am – 4 pm on Saturday for that last minute gift for your diver or snorkeler.
Stocking stuffing dive related trinkets, jewelry; accessories and small items the a diver always needs; a super sale on the remaining 2012 wetsuits (3x? we have it for you) and great deals on in stock wet suits in 3, 5, and 7 mm.
Let’s get wet (in a warm place) soon!