02/12/2011(Sat) No.1 - Rock Bluff[Florida]

Diver : Michael Clay
Dive Master :
Buddy : Joe Tegg
D.Service :
Weather : Sunny
Temp. : 62 Fahrenheit
Ave.w.temp : 69 Fahrenheit
Min.w.temp : 69 Fahrenheit
Diving Suit : Dry Suit
Inner Wear : Polartec
Weight : 0 Lbs
Tank Material : Steel 85's
Equipment : Cave Gear
S.I.Time : 00:00:00
Time In : 11:45:40
Time Out : 13:07:48
Dive Time : 01:22:10
Ave.Depth : 40 ft
Max.Depth : 53 ft
Safety Stop.Depth : ft
Safety Stop.Time : min
Tank Capacity : 225 Cu/Ft
Pres. In : 3500 PSI
Pres. Out. : 2400 PSI
Air Consum. : .71 Cu/Ft/Min
Visibility H. : 60 ft
Visibility V. : 60 ft
Access1 : Shore
Access2 : Spring
Rating : *****
Dive Number : 387
Total Time : 320:20
Dive Type : Cave Dive

Joe was needing a cave dive and plans with one of my open water buddies fell through, so Joe and I decided to take a day trip. We wanted something close but wanted a nice cave dive too. Joe suggested Rock Bluff and I had never been there, so I was all for it.

It turns out, Rock Bluff really isn't close, so I got up at O'Dark 30 and headed to Joe's house. We swapped my gear from my truck to Joe's icy truck (Brrrrr), then headed out.

We were at the river by about 10:00 and at the site and in the water before noon. The objective of this dive was to have a good time and take some pictures and video with Joe's camera. Joe took pictures heading into the opening. I filmed Joe pushing his way through the first restriction (entrance), then handed Joe the camera to film me coming through, from the inside.

We did this off and on throughout the cave. There were some areas that were a very tight squeeze for Joe to pass me or vice versa. But in the end, I think it payed off because we got some pretty cool footage!

The cave was tight and craggily most of the way through. We followed the main line and ended up in a pretty nasty, silty room. My primary light had failed on the way in, so I was on a backup light. Joe didn't feel comfortable continuing through that silt with me on a backup light and signaled to turn. I wasn't really up for tredging through the silt, so I was okay with it.

As we worked our way back through one of the (many) restrictions, I noticed that the line went around a rock protrusion off the ceiling. I found this to be strange (and somewhat confusing) so I followed it to see why. As I poked my head through that restriction, I noticed that the line continued in that direction. Since Joe had continued ahead of me back up the main line, I took a quick look, noticed that it didn't seem as silty as the passage we were returning from, then turned to catch up with Joe.

I signaled Joe and told him that the line teed back there. He asked if it was silty. I replied, "no". He asked if there was flow. I replied, "yes, a little more (than the other tunnel)". He signaled, "let's go check it out!". I backed up, pointed the line out to Joe and he went in. The rocks were black and there was debris on the line, indicating that this was not a well traveled passage (or at least not in a while). But this is where the current was originating from.

We followed the passage back for quite a way. This was cool passage with more, interesting (fun) restrictions. Around every corner was more to see. We followed it probably around 1000-1200 feet and it kept going. Since I was on my backup light and the fact that we had been in about an hour now, Joe decided to turn the dive.

We worked our way out, back through all the cool restrictions, filming along the way. As we rounded the final bend, I saw a little light out of the corner of my eye. I cupped my light and saw that it was the exit. I turned off my light and pointed it out to Joe. He turned off his light and grabbed the camera.

We got back to the exit restriction. Joe filmed me going out. Then I took the camera and filmed Joe coming through. Joe added some drama (reaching and clawing at the sand). I laughed. Once out, Joe found some sun glasses and a beer bottle and proceeded to make a face in the sand and film it. :-P

Joe filmed me exiting to the surface and the dive was over. Way cool dive!! Way cool cave!! Awesome Saturday getaway!