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Scuba News - May 2014

Spring into Scuba    
 May is here and 'tis the season to have barbecues, drink beer and eat lots of meat. When you feel guilty about that fourth burger you ate the other day, get active with some weekend scuba diving. Those of you with advanced certifications have plenty of thrilling options this summer. Trips to Farnsworth Pinnacle and the Oil Rig dives will definitely put your skills to the test. If it's been a while, that's okay too. Take a look at our refresher course to get you back in the saddle. The air is getting a little toasty, but summer generally has some of the best and clearest water conditions for diving. See you all out there! See Trips Page 
Monthly Dive Mixer hosted by Corie 

Our monthly dive shop will be held

May 6th, featuring speakers Darrell of the California Science Center and Andy of California Ships to Reefs. Darrell will be speaking about volunteer opportunities at CSC, as well as his experience has a Dive Safety Officer on various scientific expeditions around the world. Andy is chairman of California Ships to Reefs as well as Executive Vice President, Marine Eco Systems for Commercial Marine Biology Institute. He's an expert on aquariology and mariculture. Come through for free food, raffle prizes, and new dive buddies! We'll be getting started at 7:00 PM

Yukon Wreck Dives on May 25th and 26th
You know you've been wanting to do a shipwreck, so this is your chance! The Yukon was a decommissioned Canadian warship that was stripped and turned into a eco friendly reef before being dumbed in San Diego's wreck alley. This is an advanced dive, with depths from 55 to 100 feet. If you haven't got your Wreck or Advanced certification yet, this is an exciting way to do it.
Contact Tim@ecodivecenter.com or call 310-808-3250 direct to group leader 
Navigation Diver Specialty Course May 17th and 18th 
  Are you tired of getting lost underwater and doing long surface swims back to the boat? Do you have that compass on your gauge console but never really knew how to use it?

  Underwater navigation can be tricky but with knowledge, practice and a splash of luck, you can be a master of navigation, surfacing right under the boat's swim step.

  Join us on May 18th for an Underwater Navigation Specialty Course taught by Tim Yeo. 

  You will learn how to effectively use a compass to navigate patterns and irregular courses, mark a dive site so you can find it again and how to make an underwater map.

 

OXYGEN FIRST AID CERTIFICATION May 15th 6:30 PM
We will be holding a Oxygen First Aid course on May 15th. Why is oxygen first aid training important to divers, you ask? Getting bent is a risk we face as divers, and immediately administering oxygen to divers with barotrauma is shown to greatly reduce injury and recovery time. It's a good hangover helper as well, but you didn't hear it from me. Safety is always the smartest investment you can make, so join us at 6:30pm at the shop for this certification.
Discounted May 15th 6:30 PM Class
PAY TUITION 
Reef Friendly Sunscreens

It's May, and summer is almost here in Los Angeles. Time to plan you summer vacation, get your gear serviced, book your boat trips and stock up on your sunscreen for the season.

This year, let's all be a little more conscious of how our choice of sunscreen affect the plants and animals that live in the waters we play in.

The sunscreen that we lather onto our bodies washes off when we get in the water. It creates an oily slick on the coral and the chemicals promotes viral infections which causes coral bleaching.

Research and debate in recent years have been extensive over what chemicals and what sunscreens are acceptable for use when in contact with the ocean. Phrases like "Eco Friendly", "All Natural" and "Biodegradable" have all been used by sunscreen companies to get the growing market of eco-conscious, water-loving consumers to purchase their product.

The 4 ingredients that are commonly accepted to be bad for coral reefs are parabens (PABA), cinnamare, benzophenone (oxybenzone) and camphor derivatives. Try to avoid these when shopping for sunscreens.

Some of the more common sunscreen brands that are widely accepted to be reef friendly are Mexitan, Caribbean Solutions and Soleo Organics.


 

Climate Change Resistant Coral Discovered
  

As we hurtle our way through the Anthropocene, climate change is everywhere we look- especially in the oceans. The rising temperature of the sea is confusing coral, which sometimes expel the algae living inside them. This process, called coral bleaching, turns the coral white and eventually kills them. This is distressing for a number of reasons, but there is hope. In Palau, an island nation off the coast of the Philippines, coral reefs have been discovered thriving in warmer conditions that would normally be cause entire reefs to be bleached. Of course, this is only one instance in a small part of the ocean, and this no reason to dismiss the incredible impact climate change is having, but we can take some comfort in knowing that coral is learning to adapt.
Looking for new dive buddies?
 
If you want to keep up with the latest with us at Eco Dive Center, make sure to both join the Eco Dive Center Facebook Group and "like" the Eco Dive Center Facebook Fan Page. The group lets you keep in contact with other divers who are looking for buddies or gear, and the fan page will keep you updated on regular announcements for gear, courses, and deals. 

 

NEW GEAR! Mares Power PlanaFins  

   Light weight plastic fins are great for travel, but sometimes you want a nice solid rubber fin that's negatively buoyant, especially if you're a tech or dry-suit diver. The Mares Power Planta fin is made precisely for such an application, made of heavy duty material that can survive harsh conditions and help keep you oriented in a floaty dry-suit or with a tech dive plate system. These are high power, high precision fins for the expert diver.

 

Oil Rig Dives May 18th and June 7th
 
If you're itching to put that Advanced Open Water certification to use, you're now qualified to dive oil rigs. Oil rigs are in much deeper water, with much higher chances of seeing large, deep water ocean animals. The oil rig legs are also form a sort of artificial reef, making for an enjoyable descent into the deep. You'll be leaping off a moving boat for this one, which is a fun way to pretend you're an action hero.        pic by Brent Durand

 

Only the Best Brands  Some stores might pride themselves on carrying everything under the sun. We know better. We are the MoMA of scuba shops. Our selection is carefully curated, so every piece of equipment we carry at the store are pieces of equipment we like and would use ourselves. Putting together a kit with us is easy because we just don't carry anything that doesn't pass muster with us. Check it out

 

Chamber Eve 2014
We're very lucky here in Southern California to have a hyperbaric chamber on Catalina island, where in the past bent divers had to make it all the way back to shore to be treated. The chamber does rely on donations and community support to keep running, so please sign up for Chamber Day or Eve, Wednesday May 7th. There will be diving, dinner, and dancing all for a good cause, so why not? The gang at PCH Scuba has a few available seats write to pchscuba@gmail.com 
Our 0% Financing Card
 
Braving the deep and going where man never went before does add up. Even Jacques Cousteau had bills to pay! If you've been eyeing some new gear, we've got a great way to finance your future scuba adventures. The Eco Dive Center credit card offers 0% interest for the first six months and gets you an extra 10% off discount on top of any available promotions. Just come in and fill out an application, and you'll be well on your way to your new drysuit/dive computer/BC!   Go here... 
 

 

Rad Gear: The Mares Airtrim
  I'm certain most scuba divers experience this early in their career. You're upside down, way too positively buoyant and you're going up too fast butt first. You scramble for your BCD valve and jam down hard on the dump button but nothing happens! You forgot that when you're upside down you need to yank the release behind you. Mares' Airtrim technology circumvents this issue by connecting your main BCD dump button to your rear release valve, so one button is all you need. This is a great safety system for divers less familiar with their equipment and has prevented many runaway ascents.
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5 Simple Underwater Photography Tips   
 
  1. Shoot up. Get down low without stirring up sand/silt or disturbing fragile marine life and shoot your subject at an upwards angle. This technique makes your subject "pop" out against the background.
  2. Get close. The closer you get to your subject, the less water in between your lens and your subject. That means less color and contrast is taken away by the water, and less particles between the subject and your camera lens that can cause backscatter, those annoying white spots on your pictures.
  3. RAW Format. If your camera is able to, always set your camera settings to shoot in RAW format. When you download and work on your pictures on your computer, the photo editing software you use will have a lot more information in a RAW file to work with than a JPEG file. Make sure you have a large enough memory card to record pictures in RAW.
  4. White Balance. This is especially important if you are shooting without strobes. A wrist slate is the perfect white background to set your white balance on.       It is not dangling from your BCD and it can double up as a communication device or notepad. If you don't have anything to white balance with, white balance on the sand.
  5. Know your camera. Shoot underwater as often as you can, even in a pool. Know the limits of your camera and go in search of subjects that you know you and your camera can get great pictures of.


Tags: Free-refresher, Eco-adventures-dive-company, Los-angeles-scuba-events, Padi-certification, Research-diver-certification, Santa-monica-pier, Long-beach-aquarium, La-county-beaches-orange-county-beach-dive-sites, Learn-to-scuba, Long-beach-aquarium-of-the-pacific

 

   
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