I’m calm and alert, checking my gauges, intensely aware of my depth and gas reserves. The heavy twin tanks on my back and extra cylinders of decompression gases trailing on my left side, once so cumbersome on the surface, now feel gracious and elegant. To my right looms a huge boulder the size of a large house, one of a group of such monoliths we have come here to explore.
After what seems like an age, our twenty minutes of bottom time is over and it’s time to go. I signal to Steve and we start to ascend up to 27m, our first decompression stop. A further seven stops are required, switching to 50% oxygen at 21m and then 100% oxygen at 6m. This requires focus as switching to the wrong gas at the wrong depth can mean death.So what was I doing down there? Why take these risks? Many reasons I suppose. To experience new and different environments; to see all of the wonders our diverse planet has to offer; to access a world of dive sites that lie beyond the limits of recreational diving. Or perhaps it’s simply to push the limits, to see how far I can go. It’s a buzz.Interested? Then you need to become a technical diver. I studied the IANTD Normoxic Trimix course (amongst others) through Tech Asia who operate out of Puerto Galera in the Philippines. They offer all forms of technical dive training and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend them. Visit them online at www.asiadivers.com/techasia