Almost two months ago DWF and some of his fellow instructors got themselves a sneak peek at our new quarry, Juturna Springs. This was a week before they had opened, prior to an entry dock, platforms, parking, porta-potties, and a couple of other amenities.
I was cautiously optimistic that this Juturna Springs was going to be a nice place to dive. Any reservations I had were put to rest this weekend and I am all in!
I made my way out to Juturna on Saturday morning for some fun dives with some of my friends. I will be teaching an Open Water course out there next weekend, and Advanced Open Water the weekend after that, so this seemed like an advantageous weekend to get myself a bit more familiar with our newest quarry and to just have some plain old fun.
They have really made leaps and bounds in their infrastructure since that week before they opened. They now have three fairly sizable platforms as well as an entry platform. They now have restroom facilities (luxury porta-potties), a sizable parking area, and gear racks and picnic tables in the setup area. I spoke to the owner of the facility yesterday and the next big addition will be air fills!
It was pretty crowded this weekend, in fact it seemed that a huge portion of the Maryland scuba community decided to come out and do some diving after a more than a week of awful weather.
It was great to meet up with several of my fellow instructors from Columbia Scuba, as well as instructors I know from other shops in the area. I was actually diving with a couple of my former students, and saw a few other of my former students there just fun diving as well. That’s what I like to see.
Folks from the Dive Team out of Frederick were there as well providing food, with the proceeds going to the dive team. I swear, they were grilling hamburgers and wafting the smell down to us 🙂
Estimates were that about 90 folks had shown up by about noon on Saturday. That’s a heck of a lot of divers!
Now, for what you really wanted to know. Surface temps were about 78 degrees F. There was a thermocline at about 24 feet that dropped it down to 61 degrees F. We didn’t go deep enough to hit another thermocline. Basically you would have been fine in a 3MM if you didn’t want to go any deeper than 20 feet.
Visibility was 10-30 feet depending on the student activity nearby. There were a few areas where viz dropped significantly, but never < 5 feet. I hear of a silt layer at 60 feet that will knock viz down to near zero, so be patient a bring a light if you’re looking go to that deep.
I’m glad I got a chance to get a little better acquainted with Juturna Springs. This is going to be a great place for all of us.