Night diving is an experience that many divers want to test.
The divers used to the cold waters may tell you that for them, each immersion is like a night dive 😉
Yet you will find that they will be very regularly the first on a cruise ships to ask to be able to perform a night dive.
Why this craze ?
Night diving, in addition to its special atmosphere, allows to catch the underwater world at night in a very different way from that of the dives during the day. The night diving offers beautiful surprises: the jackfish that takes advantage of the beam of your torch to hunt, the lobsters that come out of their hiding places, the moray eels, the Spanish dancers who fly away … This is an underwater world that activates and lives in a surprising way.
Once you have tasted it, hard to get by without 😉
Are there any precautions to take before making your first night dive ?
The answer is YES, definitely
To become a wonderful experience, night diving requires some useful conditions / precautions especially during the first night dive :
- Feel like doing it : it may seem obvious but do not go on a night dive “because everyone does”. Do not dive unless you feel it. Some divers need to feel more comfortable and experienced to test this new dive experience.
- Plan your night dive carefully : here, even less than elsewhere, nothing should be left to chance. Planning will provide the reassuring and safe side of nighttime immersion.
- Perform the first night dives with one or several divers used to this particular type of dive.
- Choose a spot you know, you will be and feel safer
- Equip yourself with a dive lamp, torch, … per diver. Regardless of the name, each diver must have its own light source and ensure that it is in good working order (fully charged battery)
- Ensure that each diver knows the signs of night diving (if they have never been practiced, they may have been forgotten ;-))
- Ensure safety out of the water : provide a luminous point, a sign to recognize the boat (on some spots it is not always obvious) on top of regular safety rules
Feel free to tell your buddy that your are a bit scared, he/she will adapt the dive and reassure you
Of course it is not a shame to be afraid, if you don’t believe me read this post
And the golden rule in all this ?
Indeed, there is a necessary rule, in my opinion, to make each night dive a unique moment.
A rule well kept in mind of the night diving freaks.
This golden rule is … to dive during the NIGHT !
What ? But it’s obvious you will tell me 😉
Well, no, it’s not !
Quite often, night dives are dusk dives. It may look safer when you have to prepare your rig and put it on but they are different from night dives
At dusk, marine animals of the day slow down their activities and prepare for the night. The sea animals of the night are not yet very active. The twilight is probably (besides the atmosphere of calm and serenity that releases) a beautiful moment but is very different from a real night dive when it is totally dark.
Both kind of dives are nice but they are different, just think about what you want to do and what you want to see !
To illustrate …
For the anecdote, I remember this dive in Martinique with a small diving structure (check here about that kind of dive in wonderful Martinique Island). The dive manager had left us, my partner and myself, on the boat and had gone with his divers while the sun was still lying on the horizon.
With the consent of the other divers of the boat (thank you, thank you to them), it had granted us the right to put ourselves in the water when it was really dark (the night falls quickly in these latitudes)
So we immersed ourselves a few minutes before the divers returned to the surface.
In your opinion, what happened ?
Obviously, the scuba divers in the manager’s group did see what was supposed to be there at dusk. Fishes starting to slow down their activity and hiding for the night.
On the other hand, we were watched by dozens of small pairs of shiny eyes of dozens of lobsters who had left their rocks to hunt, we witnessed the awakening of a huge turtle, we admired a night life rich and very active. And, highlight of the show, when we came back, phosphorescent plankton surrounded us, making this end of dive like a journey in the Milky Way … Magic!
What to do to allow everyone to successfully dive at night ?
To the managers of dive centers : let us realize real night dives when it is really dark 🙂
For divers : require centers to let you experience a real night diving by immersing yourself in darkness. You often pay extra for these night dives. If you are offered a dive “at night” when the sun hardly disappeared on the horizon, refuse and find a center that accepts immersions in the dark in safety. These dive shops exist, I am sure you will find one
Want to share your experiences, comments and questions about night diving ?
Post a comment below … it will be my pleasure to exchange live with you 😉
Good bubbles and do not forget to be happy 🙂