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  • Writer's pictureKim Hanlon

Mother Nature Has Mood Swings Too

We all get a little grouchy sometimes, and Mother Nature is no exception. Sometimes she just wakes up on the wrong side of the planet and says “ today, someone’s gonna feel my wrath” Have you ever tried to tell your crotchety partner / child / friend to just “ Cheer up “ ? Doesn’t work, does it? Well, unfortunately it’s the same for us and our dear Mama Nature. We can’t tell her what to do, so when she’s in a mood it is completely out of our control.

And I get it, it’s annoying that we all have to suffer just because she’s in a grump. Especially when you’re on vacation and your time is limited, and you had all these plans. And the plans aren’t going to plan, like plans have a tendency to do. But we have to be patient, because when she’s happy, we’re happy too. When the weather is not on our side, it can affect how our day goes in many ways.

Sometimes we have guests that call to check if the boat is still going out when there’s a little bit of drizzle. To which our canned response is generally something along the lines of - “We’re not made of sugar “ or “ You’ll be getting wet anyway” Insert canned laughter response here. Other times there can be a lot more serious weather and guests question our decision making.

Trust us, if we could get your business and get you in the water safely, we would absolutely make it happen. So when we cancel a planned trip, there is a good reason for it. One of the big factors is wind. Wind causes waves, and the direction of the wind and waves affect our ability to safely get in the water.

We are generally pretty blessed here with flat calm waters most of the year. But sometimes the waves don’t work in our favour. For this reason our main shore diving dock has removable plates, so that when the waves are planned to pick up we can remove them to avoid any damage. We have an alternative entry and exit point via our adjoining sea pool that is generally accessible when the dock is out. But sometimes that’s too rough too.

You want it like this.
But sometimes you get this.

If the waves are blowing directly towards our entrance point, there is no safe way in or out of the water. Sometimes the waves look diveable to enter a shore dive, but if the forecast is for the weather to pick up, the exit back out might not be so easy. As a few confident divers can attest to.

Waves and surge can also affect our boat diving schedules. One of the reasons being our boats can not safely dock when it is being thrown around in the surge. The boat could get damaged, equipment could get mangled, and divers may get injured or a lot wetter in shallower water than anticipated.

We are pretty lucky here on Grand Cayman in that if the weather is too rough on one side of the island, a lot of the time the other side is pretty calm. Though that is not always the case.

Rough seas in Grand Cayman.
No shore diving today :-(

Most of the time we can plan accordingly to the forecasts. But every so often weather conditions can change pretty fast unexpectedly. Sometimes our boats are moored in the North, so if, for example, we wanted to dive the Kittiwake on the other side of the island, it would have to make its way through some very rough weather to get to where it wants to be. And I can promise you that that is not a very pleasant experience for anyone.

If you’ve ever been on a boat with someone feeling seasick, you may have noticed it can be quite contagious. Nothing screams joy like 8 green faced divers forming an orderly line around the side of a vessel, chumming the water with half digested croissants and bacon sandwiches.

If guests have special requests for dive sites, we try our absolute best to get them there, but sometimes even with the best will in the world our goal is unattainable. 98.7% of our dive sites here on Grand Cayman have one mooring. We can’t pre-book the site, so if someone else gets there first, or if the mooring line is damaged we can’t dive it. Another factor is the underwater current. When we get to any dive site, we always throw a line to check the current. If it’s ripping, at worst it is a potentially dangerous situation waiting to happen, at best it’s just not going to be an enjoyable experience for all. So the plans have to be deviated. Sucks, but such is life.

At the end of the day we are in business because we love to dive and take people diving. If that can’t be done in a safe and controlled manner, then unfortunately that’s ultimately the will of a force beyond our control.

If you find that magic word that can miraculously alter someone's disposition, please do let us know. We will try to communicate it with Mother dearest via smoke signals.

But we can’t promise anything.

Dive boat in Grand Cayman on a calm day.


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