In general, Quarry diving does not attract much interest from divers. Quarry dives are mostly described as cold, dark and devoid of interest. However, the situation is slowly changing and more divers are starting to dive into quarries . For what reasons? What is the interest of this type of diving and what can we see there?
What is quarry diving ?
As a reminder, an underwater quarry is an open water body, from which building materials such as stone, sand or various non-metallic and carboniferous minerals have been extracted. These quarries exploited loose or massive rocks, but also eruptive or metamorphic rocks. Underwater quarries are often old quarries of slate or granite. These quarries all have their specificities, starting with their depth which can vary between 15 meters minimum and 60 meters maximum. Even if diving in quarries is a little criticized by some divers, a growing number, is interested and practice this particular dive. A quarry dive is, in fact, very similar to diving in a lake. The sites that allow you to dive into a quarry are constantly developing to provide divers with all the comfort and security needed to discover a different environment. At the bottom of some quarries, there are even wrecks and wildlife that increase the attraction for this type of diving. It’s also the way for the more experienced, to train by testing the effectiveness of their diving equipment before immersion at sea. It’s also a chance, for beginners, to prepare for the dive while avoiding the constraints related to the sea like the current or the tides.
How to prepare for a quarry dive as well as some advice?
Diving in a quarry has its own characteristics. The dive is done in fresh water, in cold water, where it is quickly dark. The fresh water has an influence on the ballast of the diver, who is led to less ballast. The often-cold water temperature can cause icing of the regulators and because of the darkness that dominates the bottom of the quarry, the diver can face stress that will promote shortness of breath or narcosis. Thus, during a quarry dive, one must be prepared for these constraints and these eventualities for it to be successful. It is very important, during a quarry dive, to continually look after all three aspects. The ballast is very important, it must be checked seriously and systematically, especially when you are used to diving at sea . Cold is the main constraint of quarry diving. It must always be a source of concern. Emphasis should be placed on the fact that it is necessary to shorten the diving, if the cold is too much feeling while remaining vigilant to the possible icing of the regulator. During a dive in the quarry, the lack of luminosity under water is felt fairly quickly. To be equipped with a diving lamp is obligatory for the persons supervising the dive in the quarry but also preferable for all divers. Moreover, with the darkness characteristic of diving in quarries, losing a member of the team is easy and, in this case, be equipped with a flasher signal is a great help. It is also necessary not to panic and comply with the safety instructions previously given by the diving director.