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A deeper day

Thread Status: Hello , There was no answer in this thread for more than 60 days.
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looking for deeper water
Jan 26, 2002

I thought I would tell about my experiences yesterday.

It was meant to be a spearfishing day but due to some engine issues we didnt quite make it to the reef but anyways.

My mate Oscar and I were in the shipping channel just drifting so we decided to jump in without our guns, this was my first experience at diving for depth without a gun.

The horizontal visibilty was excellent from 50ft and shallower It felt like we could see for ages it was blue with no reef bottom or anything to be seen, inside of me I had a fear of a monster Tiger coming out of the blue and munching me I was a little nervous for the first 10mins. Water surface temp was around 25C and a little cooler below 50ft with lots of jellyfish though not dangerous ones.

We dropped the anchor down which only goes to 80ft so it wasnt touching the bottom and we were just drifting. Oscar and I did our first dive to 50ft it was awsome just to look around i didnt have a gun so I didnt have to worry about fish I just scanned in all directions. We surfaced did some breatheups and made our next dive, I hit 74ft and Oscar hit 81ft but it was scary beyond 50 with all the Jellyfish and haze.

We made one final dive we were both breathed up well and I felt a little more relaxed. Oscar dove first and I went a few seconds later I was watching him kicking really hard and when I got to 60ft I started to sink like a rock I passed the anchor at 80ft and almost ripped my wetsuit on it :naughty I sunk for a few seconds longer and looked at my watch it read 94ft so I quickly levelled out as this was deeper than I had ever been but I was still feeling good. Oscar kept kicking and amazingly he hit the bottom of the ocean at 120ft and grabbed some mud for proof. I was ascending slowly whilst Oscar overtook me on the way up as he wears a 3mm suit with NO weights and I wear a 3.5mm suit with 11lbs so it was a little heavy down there.

We both surfaced easily and I knew I could have gone deeper but the fact that it was already a pb made me pull up. Oscar feels he can do 130ft or more. Oscars deepest dive before this was 90ft so he increased by 30ft which I personally think is a bit too much of a jump in pbs but he felt fine.

This is another step in our quest to hunt the ocean floors and reefs in 100ft+. I think Oscar is capable of hunting 100 at the moment. I must say for any spearos who havent tried diving without a gun like us until yesterday it is SOOOO much easier then a hunting dive, focusing on depth and relaxation makes the dives so much easier.

Congrats on the pb!

Don't you think it was a bit risky diving at the same time as your buddy when you are both going for pb's? Personally I would have taken turns! If you both had blackouts, it could have been ugly...

Eric Fattah
BC, Canada

Hey thanks Eric was our first experience at the freediving thing, not exactly as deep as your 300ft dives :D but still it was exciting for us.

It was a bit risky to dive together but it was so good watching someone dive that deep and if I was on the surface I would have seen nothing. But inside me part of the reason why I levelled out is beacuse I know the risks involved and knew that it would be stupid for both of us to go 120ft for the first time, I knew Oscar would push it towards the bottom as he generally focuses on something and goes for it.

He doesnt really have any knowlege on freediving in terms of blackouts and terminology (Im trying to teach him) so I played it safe and let him push it harder.

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Hey Ivan

Aint it funny, how one single gun and the focus for fish can affect your ability to dive. Keep that in mind when you feel down, while reading the "freedive only" posts.

Congratulation on you PB.

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Sorry freedivers only

No offence. Uw hunters dont have to dive as deep as you and you dont have to carry a gun.


yeah mate the gun sure strips off a lot of depth, but being a hunter theres not really much point going out into the ocean without bringing home dinner.

Makes me wonder how deep guys like Alberto march could dive without a gun when they can already hunt 150ft+ consistently with bottom time :confused:

See Ivan, you CAN do it !!!! Congrats man...:D

I think the burden-less dive with out a gun, not to mention less weight to carry and no float line to drag along does make a difference.

Same thing with me on scuba, without a gun, I feel naked but my air reserve goes up a lot......burdenless !!

Now if you can set your mind to think that you are not carrying a speargun while you are actually carrying one, and not having to look left right for fishes and getting that hear beat excited....maybe consistent 100 feet is all YOURS !!!!
Be safe dude and glad you made the PB.
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My biggest fear is getting down there and running into some monster species I have never shot, and not having my gun!

So far the only deep dives I have ever made without my gun, was to retrieve a shaft. I felt really awkward and buoyant. I guess I will have to adjust, because I’m taking the Performance Freediving class with Scott T. and Angelos Nov. 1-4. I think there are still spaces available if any other spearos want to go.
Yep Ivan

Humans are poor creatures in H2O. I sure feel a difference between a 50-75 to a 110 cm gun.
Man then talk about the difference between a 3mm and a 6,5mm suit, Dam.

Hey Andrew

Interesting story, congrats on your PB ! I started freediving with nothing other than to get comfortable in the ocean, then go a bit deeper...then I developed an interest in spearfishing.
And man, was my first trip down with a gun interesting ! Instead of relaxing and focusing on form, etc, I was wrestling with the gun, Buoy-Line, kelp forest, it was a laugh a minute, my bottom time was about 10 percent of normal, I was too busy trying to pull stringer-line out of the kelp to even look for fish, and yes....when I eventually saw a lonely Hottentot swim past me, I realised I had not released the safety catch !

Needless to say, the fish were under no threat from me that day, and apart from an empty barbaque fire that evening...I had developed a whole bunch of new respect for the hunters of the ocean !!
One day I will post a story here of my first 'big hunt', until then...respect to all spearo's !!
Wow! What a scene, drifting down past your anchor :) in the deep deep blue...many happy more dives, and returns!


Yeah adrian it was awsome on the surface looking down I would have never thought we could make the anchor because it was just a white line ??? but next time I think we will throw down a deeper anchor in some deeper water cos Oscar rang me last night and says he is still excited about his dive and wants to do 140ft+next time :hmm

Bluecape thanks for a good laugh mate I remember when we had safety's on our guns and the many times they were still on when a nice fish would swim past whilst you quickly tried to take the darn thing off. We just pull them out now and make sure we dont point the gun at anyone :t

Don where we were diving was just mud so the chance of seeing a good fish is fairly small, but then this is the home for our winter humpbacks so bumping into one of them on the bottom would make it a peak heart rate ascent :D

Iya thanks for the confindence bud but I think it will still be a little while till I can take a gun down there. My float line is only about 28m I think so that will bottom out before the bottom anyways. The main problem with the gun is not so much the descent but when ascending my fins always seem to kick my gun and that stuffs up my ascending focus. On the dive the other day I only looke up a few times the rest I was relaxed and looking straight ahead. I think Oscar is capable of hunting 100ft now he did that 120ft dive with ease.

I always thought that diving without a gun for septh would suck so badly, but it was quite fun to do for a change however I think it would get to boring and technical if you did it all the time. However next time the weather is good i would like to do 6 dives instead of 3 and see what happens.

Ivan, great dive. Getting away from the drag of a gun can be liberating. If you want to be able to spear with almost no drag, a sling might be worth trying. Not much good for pelagics, but in clear water shooting normal size reef fish (not potato cod or goliath grouper) a sling can be very effective. The sling's major disadvantage is the amount of practice it takes to get reasonably proficient with it.

Good luck going deeper!

Hopefully this weekend Oscar and I will get a day off and if the weather's good I would like to try for 120ft and Oscar wants to do 140ft so my fingers are crossed that we can get out there again and have some fun :)


Cool story! Best of luck with 120’. Be careful!!!!!!! I too am on that quest to be able to hunt 100' comfortably. From what I hear I’ll need to be able to do that at next year’s Nationals in Hawaii if I want to get any good fish. This past weekend showed me I'm pretty close now though. I was hunting 86-88' and easily chasing fish around on the bottom. I'm looking forward to doing the Performance Freediving Clinic next month. Maybe that'll put me into hunting triple digit depths. You're so right about the gun/no gun thing. My first year ever freediving I took a course from Rudi Castaneyra and hit 110 ft. Four years later and always carrying a gun, I've yet to ever hit that depth again. I'm curious to see what I can do under Kirk’s and Bret’s direction and no gun. I'm thinking 130’ maybe, hopefully at least 120’. Me and Don will report back after the class and let everyone know how we did and what we thought of the class.

Scott T.
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Miami, Nov 1-4. Love to have you come. Were going to give Martin some spearo company, after being surrounded by all those purists.;)

Scott if you are already hunting close to 90 then I think with no gun, a vertical line, some clear water, and some safety people as well as a few mates cheering you on you could do 150ft +.

I know that if Oscar and I ever had an oppurtunity to get a freedive class like that we would try and go MUCH deeper than ever before because there is very little that can go wrong with a class like that.

I remember reading stories about the World champs in Tahiti a few years back I believe in was Len de beer of south africa saying that a 30m dive was a "shallow dive" cos the fish were either extremely shallow like 10ft or really deep, he was hunting up to 150ft with total dive times of 2:30.


Ps Will pm you tommorow Scott
deep dive safety at class

I understand that Kirk and gang invented a retrieval system with a counter weight that is suppose to bring up a diver faster than a safety diver ever could. They even have figured out how to tell when the diver’s descent or ascent is unreasonable slow.

I’m hoping they use it on us. I really want to see it first hand.
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