Before I traveled to the Cayman Islands I knew what to expect; I had been there so many times for photographic and diving adventures. As I know about many locations near the coast yet too far to swim to, I decided to take, along with regular diving and photographic equipment, an inflatable Stand Up Paddle board (SUP). I was convinced that the combination of different sports would be something interesting.
Locations that were interesting to me were located relatively close to the coast. To get there by boat was too complicated to do with a diving center, because it is not in anyone's interest to take few people for diving. Also, in cases where there are more people interested in the same location, they all rarely want to do repeated dives in one location like me (especially in cases when I'm working on a particular type of photo and in a particular location).
Everyone thinks Stand Up Paddle boards are for cruising around, but I was thinking the complete opposite. On this kind of board you easily have the room and capacity to haul your gear quickly and efficiently to your diving destination. The board is ideal for mounting a dive flag as a mark for a diver and for keeping essentials like drinks, sunscreen and some necessary equipment. At the end of the day it rolls up and fits in the trunk of your car! When you do all this with your dive buddy everything is much simpler, like in my case when my buddy is also my underwater model for photography. Renting weights and tanks at a diving center was not a problem with my SSI Instructor diving license.
This article should be a motivation to all those who would like to do something different, and simply do not know how. The solution I chose was great and absolutely I did not have any problems, so I will definitely continue to scuba dive in this way because satisfaction is multiple.
It's important to advise you that you have a buoy to tie the board and mark it with a diving mark. In cases when the buoy doesn’t exist, think wisely how you will secure the board and mark the diving site. It depends a lot on the place and the depth where you dive!
During my dives I used MARES equipment: Thermo Guard, Fusion regulator, Hybrid BCD, X-Stream fins and X-Vision mask.
In any case, think differently and fun is guaranteed!! In my case, it's not hard at all to be different and try different. In the end just add water and enjoy!
Mares Ambassador Predrag Vuckovic
Milan Jovanovic & Predrag Vuckovic
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