Clear Springs Scuba Park:

 

Clear Springs near Terrell is our closest and most regular dive site.

lauri terrel.jpg (76806 bytes) Here we are at Clear Springs Scuba Park. You notice the background is green in color. Usually the visibility is OK and it can be cold below the thermoclines. However it is good fun and a cheap day out - and its always important to practice your skills. Its too easy to forget things like hand signals, dumping air from your BCD when ascending and emergency drills. Also the divers are fun people to hang out with. peter.jpg (59415 bytes)

Lauri

Pete


Pictures from Clear Springs. These were taken in August 2002, when my Children, David and Sarah, graduated their PADI Open Water (OW) class. They are practicing compass navigation in the third picture. Click to enlarge all pictures.
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Sarah & Dave Class Navigation Dave Sarah Lake Resident

 

For a number of years I have done the "Polar Bear" dive at Clear Springs Scuba Park. It is normally a lot of fun, and is more of a social event rather than a serious dive.

This photo was the dive on 01/01/2011 at the park. I has the pleasure of diving with my Daughter, Sarah. We both used Dry Suits. It was her first ever dive in a dry suit. She won the plaque for the diver traveling the greatest distance to do the dive this year.

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  Athens Scuba Park:

 

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Picture to follow

Athens scuba park was a clay pit in the town of Athens. The bottom is all soft clay, so it can easily get "mucked up" if divers are not careful. There is no life in the water. So, the owners have added lots of items like a bus, airplanes, boats, a statue made of scuba tanks and motor bikes in the lake. Around the lake there are plenty of covered seats. they are always playing music at the shop. That gives it a kind of Caribbean feeling.

 

 

  Lake Travis:

 

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Pete's Dad wonders
why anybody
would dive here ?

Lake Travis - Austin. The deep dive for our AOW certification was done beside the Lower Colorado River Authority (LCRA), Mansfield Dam. The current water temperature can be checked HERE. The visibility is usually pretty bad, but even the worst day of diving is still better than the best day at work They have underwater platforms, an aircraft (Cessna 172B - N7689X), and a couple of boats down there to amuse us. They have some nice covered areas with tables and benches. Real nice. Some of the divers we have been there with like to camp out at the site. The rest of us stay in the cheapest hotels we can find nearby (I said cheapest we can find - not cheap! ).

 

  Balmorhea State Park:

 

 

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Lauri & Beth

Balmorhea State Park in south-west Texas. The picture shows Lauri and Beth beside the 1.75 acre lake which is the dive pool at this state park. The fish here are used to divers and are extremely friendly. This is some of the clearest water I have dived in - visibility is great! We were here during December 2001, doing some dives towards our Advanced Open Water (AOW) certification. The water temperature was warm enough, but a cold storm blew through and we froze to death when we got out of the water !!! There is an onsite dive shop HERE.

 

  Valhalla Missile Silo:

 

 

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Valhalla is the most unusual dive site I have ever seen. It is located just south of Abilene in west Texas. It is a disused Atlas Missile Silo, left over from the cold war. It only contained a missile for about three years and was then de-commissioned by the US Air Force. Over the years it has filled with ground water and has become available to divers. It is only open three or four times a year. The water in the silo is 60 feet across and I found 111 feet deep. It's very dark (Sun does not get through 4 feet of concrete) and cold (55F).  The pictures show the above ground entry, the water entry platform, Dave and  I on the platform, and some typical debris at the bottom of the silo. valhalla3.jpg (52237 bytes)

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  The Flower Gardens:

 

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The Flower Gardens is a National Marine Sanctuary in the Gulf of Mexico, about 110 miles south of Houston. I went there with a group of friends and we had a wonderful time. I believe there are a couple of boat operators going there, but we went on the Fling. The boat was full (34 passengers) so diving and sleeping arrangements were a bit crowded. But everybody worked together. The food was plentiful with basic home cooking. The crew were great. The water was so warm in July, that I only needed swimming trunks. The highlight of the trip was the Manta Ray shown in the last picture. We guessed it to be 12 to 15 feet across. We also got to dive oil platform A-389A. Another great experience, but you have to watch your depth real closely. There were Barracuda all over the Flower Gardens and Stetson Bank. We saw several with fish hooks in their mouths - I would not fancy landing one of these! You have to plan your own dives and get back to the boat. Practice your compass navigation skills before going on this trip. We had a naturalist on board, who has a homepage with some professional pictures on it.
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  We like diving in Texas.