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Instruction > Classes > Specialized Advanced Diver Training >
Ice Diving Briefing > Ice Diving Briefing

Omni Divers Underwater Services, L.L.C. Ice Diving Briefing

Ice Diving for All the Years

Click on the Weather in Klamath Falls, Oregon Click for Klamath Falls, Oregon Forecast

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Ice Diving Briefing
by Lisa McFall

Katherine wrote:
Hi Lisa, do you know what the ice diving class will cost?
thanks!
Katherine

Hi Katherine!

I hope you're having an Awesome day!!

Costs:
Class - $295
Text - $35
Certification Fees - $25

The text is Beneath a Crystal Ceiling: the Complete Guide to Ice Diving by R. Todd Smith.

Three dives are required for certification, but most people opt to do a 4th dive on Sunday for fun too :)

You need to provide your own tanks and weights, but those can be rented locally at Dive Idaho Dive Idaho.

The specific ice diving gear (ice diving harness, rope, etc... is provided by Omni Divers).

In addition to the actual ice dives (3), the course covers top-side site preparation (both lecture and hands-on), assisting your fellow ice-diving enthusiasts in and out of the water (easier said than done :-), and taking turns tending an ice diver. I can honestly say I love the site preparation work as much as the actual ice diving.

Some of the work involved in preparing the site includes opening the ice-hole by first drilling holes into the ice at the three points of the future ice opening triangle with an auger; using a long bladed hand saw to "connect the ice hole corner 'dots'" so to speak; and shoveling a rather intricate concentric circle pattern in the snow around the ice-hole opening Ice Diving Spokes. The prep work usually takes between 2-1/2 to 4 hours (depending on the thickness of the ice and the number of ice diving candidates). On two occasions in the past few years we've encountered ice as thick as 3 feet.

Making your first descent "Beneath the Crystal Ceiling" is a treat! I love experiencing the liquid realm I treasure so much in this very unique manner. One of my favorite things to do is hover a few feet beneath the ice ceiling and watch my exhalation bubbles expand into silvery swollen jellyfish shapes before abruptly shattering against the ice ceiling. The image that's created when the swollen air bubble strikes the ice always reminds me of watching someone throw a bucket of diamonds out on to a large piece of glass. The individual diamond-like "drops" of air scurry wildly about against the ice surface enjoying their independence for a few moments before sliding together to form psychedelic blob-like shapes that eerily slither out of site. When you're on the surface tending you will occasionally hear the "blurp, blurp, blurp" noises as the large blobs of trapped air make their way to the ice-hole opening to escape. Probably the closest any of us will ever come to hearing a lake burp :)

We meet on Friday evening (7 pm) in Boise for dinner and lecture. Everyone spends the night in Boise and then we caravan to the town of McCall, Idaho, the next morning leaving about 8 am. It's usually a 2+ hour drive to McCall (depending on winter road conditions). We drive to the site and do our site prep work, then make a quick drive to the motel to check in and change into our dry suits and return to the lake to dive, dive, dive!!!!! We have dinner at a local restaurant and relax ~ The motel we usually stay at has a hot tub. Early Sunday morning finds us meeting for breakfast, then doing 1-2 more dives, disassembling the site, having lunch and debriefing and filling out log books, signing certification cards and then driving back to Boise.

I checked with Phil and he said the January ice dive dates may not fall during the time of the McCall winter carnival (difficulty in getting rooms) but while there we should be able to see some "in the works" ice sculptues.

Feel free to send the instructor, Phil Graf an email with any questions you may have too. His email address is omnidive@omnidivers.com.

Enjoy the Day!
Lisa

Ice Diver Extraordinaire
Editor's comment (ODUS)

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