IS GALAPAGOS RIGHT FOR ME? AM I READY FOR THIS VENUE?
I get asked this question all the time. I have reached out to experts who know Galapagos extremely well and combined this with my own experiences going there 5 times. We have created the following information for you. We hope this helps.
We strongly urge EVERYONE going to start a fitness program NOW for next year! We also need you to do at least 1-2 dive trips during this time... consider Florida or any diving you can do anywhere. Why? For many its already been a year since we've dove and if you go another year without diving...you WILL NOT HAVE A GOOD EXPERIENCE IN GALAPAGOS or worse....the operator will not be able to allow you to dive. This is the proverbial 'big boy' and 'big girl' diving so let's get ready for it!
Conditions in April in Galapagos are not usually as difficult as they can be in July- Nov.
Water is warmer and surface conditions are calmer.
Regardless of this currents are possible.
We don’t generally do drift dives since if we did divers we would not see anything as the dive would be over before it started. Dives can be against the current. Here is a list of things divers need to be aware of:
DESCENDING & ASCENDING:
1. All entries are back roll entries. Divers must be ready to back roll and immediately descend
2. Often there is current on descents. They need to be able to descend quickly and fight current to get to the platform if necessary.
3. They must be capable of holding on to the rocks in current and comfortable with the regulator moving in their mouth due to current.
4. We do not often swim against current but they must be able to do so if necessary.
ASCENDING AND LEAVING THE WATER TO GET BACK ON THE DINGY/ZODIAC:
1. Divers must be comfortable ascending with their buddy if one of them is low on air. The guide and rest of the group will not ascend with them. They must have good enough buoyancy to comfortably do a safety stop on each dive of 3 minutes or more
2. They must be comfortable waiting on the surface for the panga (zodiac) to pick them up.
3. They must be comfortable sending up a safety sausage or blowing one up at the surface so as to be seen more clearly by the panga drivers.
4. All equipment must be passed up to the panga piece by piece and they will climb a ladder into the panga. When it is rough this needs to be done quickly. They need to be able to pass weight belt up as well as fins. The panga driver will lift up the tank/bcd. (Great opportunity to increase your upper body strength for not only passing up gear but also getting you up that ladder as well.)
1. good air management
2. positive buoyancy on surface
3. good buoyancy underwater
4. calm underwater in case of currents
5. stay close to the group
We do not suggest over weighting as this puts the diver in a difficult situation. The reality is that most divers already dive over weighted so adding add'l weight can be dangerous. Water is very high in salinity so most divers will already be using more weight than they ever have before for the same thermal protection. In essence you will think you are over weighted when in fact you are not. If you truly dive neutrally weighted THEN being a pound over weighted may help you descend slightly faster and stay on the bottom easier but you should not be over weighted more than a pound or two max. The first few dives are all easy dives so you have the ability to get comfortable.
SUGGESTIONS & REQUIREMENTS:
Every expert suggests that you get in the water in some form, even in a pool, and practice dive skills.
Ideally you will have been diving somewhere within 6 months of the trip.
We even suggest you do a pool or dive refresher. If you have not been diving in 2 years no operator including SingleDivers.com can let you dive. It just would not be safe.
NOTE: SingleDivers.com is hoping to plan several more easy to dive but good practice venues as well as easy to get to venues and/or inexpensive trips including Cozumel, Roatan, Dominica and S. Florida. These will serve you well to practice your skills!
Every expert has suggested that EVERYONE planning this trip should start an exercise program NOW and work for the upcoming year getting fit! This will help tremendously with all aspects of the trip and help offset the effects of last year's covid confinements.
SingleDivers.com has started a "Get Fit for Galapagos Group" HERE Join us and lets get fit together!
If you have questions about your skills, abilities to do these dives, worried about getting into shape, wanna get more dives in etc please reach out to us. You can do so via email to email@example.com or you can call me at 864-557-6079. The questions you ask now can be the difference between enjoying your bucket list trip or wishing you'd thought more about it before jumping in over your head! &