I first started Diving in 1993 when I was studying at Yale College and selected it as one of my extra-curriculum activities. the club that I belong to is the Desert Divers, which is a small club who's members consist of past and present students and their friends. The club is now based in Gloucester.
Over the years the club has usually taken part in two dive expeditions a year. A Pembrokeshire trip at Easter and an expedition to the Isle of Mull in the Summer. So far I have been able to attend four Pembroke trips and five Mull trips. I have also been fortunate enough to have dived in some of the most beautiful waters in the world at the Maldives and Bali.
My local dive sites are situated on the North Wales coast around the Isle of Anglesey or inland quarries within Snowdonia.
My personal favourite quarry that I have dived in is the Vivian Quarry which is located within the Padarn Country Park in the village of Llanberis, nestling at the foot of Snowdon. It is an easy and relaxing dive with a maximum depth of 18 meters. The highlight of the dive is the disused huts at the bottom which you are able to swim through into the separate rooms and come out the chimney. Although small, the quarry more than makes up for its size in the fact that it is a very picturesque location giving sheltered diving no matter what the weather.
Another good quarry dive in the North Wales area is the Dorothea which is much larger than the Vivian with a maximum depth of over 90 meters. Don't let this depth scare you off though, as there is plenty of shallow dives that can be undertaken in the quarry. One that I suggest involves a small swim from the entry point to the metal hawser (looking at the map from the thumbnail on the left, the swim is straight down to the small peninsula that juts out from the right), then down the hawser and through a small tunnel in the cliff at about 16m, then swim back around the cliff to the huts at 25m, and back up to the hawser to about 12m and swim against the cliff face in a anti-clockwise direction back to the entry point through a number of petrified trees.
The highlight of our clubs diving calendar is the annual trip to the Isle of Mull in the Western Isles of Scotland. We usually set up base in it's capital of Tobermoray (pictured to the right) and travel around the island to the best dive sites. During the first couple of years that I went we were fortunate enough to have a dive boat which enabled us to venture further a field to reach wrecks such as the Pelican in Tobermoray Harbor and an old ammo ship at Loch Caol. A picture of our boat is shown to the left, it has now gone walk-about and we no longer know where it is. For more details about the Scottish trips see my Mull Photo Gallery.