Having recently taken the first steps on the PADI Open Water ladder, I was keen to take any opportunity to dive again. I'd qualified in Jamaica and did a follow up dive in Tenerife, so the prospect of getting into the cold water in the UK was a bit daunting.
I exchanged a couple of emails with Dan before booking. He was very assuring and answered my questions quickly and also made some good suggestions as to what to expect.
My 15yr old daughter joined us for our first dive under Swanage pier. Dan was great, he showed us the layout of the pier and talked us through what to expect. He then made sure we knew our stuff and rehearsed a few hand signals. By the time we geared up and entered the water, we were both confident and very comfortable with Dan.
The equipment we rented was top notch - unlike the worn-to-death gear we got in Tenerife!
The pier dive was great, surprising what could be seen - Sea Bass, Bream, Pollack, Spider Crabs, Sand Eels and the occasional Tern diving into the water (for the sand eels).
After a brief rest and recharge, Dan and I took a charter boat to Old Harry for a drift dive. Dan briefed me fully and it was so great having his vast experience on-tap. He also has a very special manner when explaining things - everything is clear, concise and builds your confidence. This was my fifth dive ever and the most complex. Yet everything went smoothly and Dan made sure I knew what to do.
The dive itself was so different to anything I'd ever done before but SO MUCH FUN. We were joined by a couple of smooth hound sharks (about 4 feet long) during the dive, they didn't seem to mind the current (nor Dan poking one of them!).
All in all it was a great day and I can't recommend Dan more highly. For novice divers, he's the business - and such a nice guy too!
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