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CCR Inspiration Training - 2013

My friend Eric and I were looking at CCR training.  I came across Paul’s website during a googling session on technical diving training.  Impressive first impression, intimidating: on my door step: Royal Marine Commando, extensive maritime special operations, we’re not speaking about the holiday laid back dive instructor.  Being part of a local diving club and the industry, following this first research, I came across even more intimidating stories.  And that’s only the civilian ones.

I bravely sent him an email.  Got an answer from Paul: he was in Sidney speaking at an international technical diving conference, after what he was going to Chuuk Lagoon with Rod Macdonald.  No doubt then, I was speaking to the right guy.

We organised a chat at his place and the only surprise of the training, no one really wants surprise when it’s about rebreather training, was a good one: Paul is very accessible.

We started with an in detail technical review of our units.  My day job involves engineering with o-ring and pressure, a rebreather is all about those two (and a voltage measurement); I would have picked up hesitation, technical uncertainty.  There’s been none, Paul knows his subject and is, as one would expect with such a background, rigorous.

Followed a very interactive theoretical course, illustrated of personal anecdotes, the one that would fit in a book.

Next was the real deal: getting wet.  Swimming pool session first, then heading to the Scotland west coast, the great Lochaline Dive Center.  Progressive evolution starting with an “easy” shore dive from the post office all the way to: access a remote beach in front of the Shuna with the 4x4 pickup, get a tow from fellow divers, Paul did the swim, Dive the Shuna, underwater back to shore practising skills warned by wireless text messages, 101min dive time.

I would redo the dives just for the intensity, the fun we had!

Extensive technical and practical knowledge, great human contact we could not have asked for more.  Patience as well: Paul supported a week of English spoken with a French accent (I’m not French).  Or is that the reason why we spent so much time under the water?

Thanks again Paul, next steps in 2014!



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