Looks like we could be seeing another weekend of positive conditions for Scuba Diving in South Wales this weekend. Swell size is looking like it should be around the 2ft - 3ft range and winds are fairly gentle. Wind direction should also be more offshore over the weekend, meaning the South Wales coast will be afforded a little bit of protection, helping to keep the visibility - a key requirement for an enjoyable scuba dive - reasonable.
Tide size is fairly average for the South Wales coast, or Bristol Channel, with low tide around 3m - 4m and high tide around 8m. Whilst that isn't a huge tidal range for South Wales, it is still a massive volume of water moving, so you will still need to ensure you are planning your dives around the tidal movement, remembering the rule of twelfths. You want to be looking to dive the incoming tide, so this weekend, that means a morning dive with high tide being 10:50 on Saturday and 11:55 on Sunday.
Keep in mind that temperatures, both air and sea, are starting to drop now, so you'll need to be thinking about the level of thermal protection you require, both during, before and after your dive. We're getting into the dry suit season for coastal dives and hoods and gloves are going to start being required too. You'll also want to ensure you are able to keep warm before any dive and warm up after your dive too - whilst the wind should be fairly gentle, there will be a noticeable wind chill.
Last weekend we ran the confined water dives and theory section of the PADI Open Water Diver course in Cardiff. There's no training this weekend, but we'll be taking our students down to Chepstow this month to complete the open water section of the PADI Open Water Diver course and allowing them to become fully qualified to scuba dive anywhere in the world up to 18m.
We're also looking to run an Advanced Open Water course in the coming weeks, so if you are interested in taking your scuba diving training to the next level then give us a call and we can provide you with more details. The PADI Advanced Open Water course will help you improve you buoyancy, dive to 30m deep and give you a chance to practice you diving with fully qualified PADI instructors.
CAUTIONS – Water temperatures are starting to drop now as the air temperature starts to decrease. You'll need to think about your thermal protection both whilst in the water and after exiting. Hoods, Gloves, Semi-dry or Dry suits. Windproof jackets and lots of layers for when you've finished your dive too.