January 2017

Next Meeting: Tuesday, January 17, 2017
Andrews University, Biology Amphitheater, Price Hall, Berrien Springs, MI
Meeting starts at 7:30 p.m.
3rd Tuesday of every month except December

January Meeting

Normal Meeting sequence is as follows:

  1. Introduce Visitors.
  2. Present Specific Club Information
    2017 dues are due ‐ Verify your contact info
  3. Identify dive events upcoming or planned. (Dives & Road Trips)
  4. Identify & discuss diving related news important to divers.
  5. Present any Show & Tell.
  6. Attendees speak about current diving experiences or lessons learned.
  7. Open session.

November Meeting & December Highlights:

19 members in attendance at the November meeting where the following was discussed:

2017 Elections were held and the results are:

Mary Beth Thar – President
Richard Curtis – Vice President
Ric Kling – Treasurer
Don McAlhany – Newsletter/Club Website

Presentation on “Dating Bottles” was given by Mary Beth.

The New Year’s Gathering & Dive will be hosted by Larry & Jeri Steelman

November 26: Turkey Dive
Seven Muddies got wet, 5 wetsuit & 2 dry suit divers, water visibility was in the 1′ to 5′ range, current moving at a hefty clip, water temperature was 40 to 43 degrees °F. Four muddies were present for shore support. Some got wetter than they were planning on.

2017 Turkey Dive – St. Joseph River, Fisherman’s Park, Benton Harbor, MI.

December 19: Doing New Year’s dive site reconnoitering. After checking out Hidden Valley Pond ice thickness, we went to Marmont street boat launch to check it as an alternate site. At the time there was shoreline ice out ~10 feet. Current strong enough that you need a line and tender so the river is out as a New Year dive site.

Dec 19, 2016 Marmont Street Landing, Niles, MI – Don McAlhany (diver) & Jim Scholz (tender)

Last dive of 2016 and First dive of 2017 was in Niles at the Hidden Valley Pond as shown in a daytime shot before cutting the ice. Thanks to Jo Ann Flock for her hospitality in letting us dive at Hidden Valley.

Hidden Valley Pond, Niles, MI.

Divers Larry Steelman, Ken Riemer, Kevin Ailes, Don McAlhany and Snorkeler Joshua Snyder who just turned 15 was with us for his 3rd year in a row. Tenders were Jim Scholz, Lucy Riemer and MB Thar. Picture supplied by MB Thar.

2016/2017 Michigan U/W Divers – New Years Midnight Ice Dive – Hidden Valley Pond, Niles, MI  (F) L-R Divers: Larry Steelman, Ken Reimer,  Don McAlhany:  Rear (L-R) Kevin Ailes and Joshua Snyder (15)

2017 Diver Related Events

January 21: Three Specialty Dive Courses at Wolf’s Marine – Benton Harbor, MI
January 28: Thrill of the Chill Time & place to be determined (check Facebook)
February XX: Thrill of the Chill TBD – updated on Facebook & club website
February 24-26: Our World Underwater Donald E. Stephens Convention Center, Rosemont, IL
March 04: The Great Lakes Shipwreck Festival Washtenaw Community College, Ann Arbor, MI
March 10-11: Ghost Ships Festival – Crowne Plaza Milwaukee Airport Hotel, Milwaukee, WI

Organize a dive and paste it on the Facebook MUD club site.

River ice changes daily but most seem to always have shoreline ice with fast current. If diving the river, it’s mandatory you do so with a tender. And while we are waiting for the ice to build thick enough for a group ice dive, it has been noted that some of the local inland lakes are getting thick enough for ice fisherman to venture out. Thanks to the carelessness of several ice fishermen, Kevin Ailes has made several “phone” recovery dives in January.

As noted before, the Club changing shed, heater, and line reels are available for pickup with prior arrangement.

Come on out and join the fun! Anyone who can provide surface support for the divers will be GREATLY appreciated. Check and confirm buddies or support is available when you are diving.

Check out these dive shops that Muddy Divers use

Wolf’s Marine Dive Shop
Benton Harbor, MI

Sub Aquatic Sports & Service
Battle Creek, MI

Divers Inc.
Ann Arbor, MI

Cheboygan, MI

Hart City Scuba
Elkhart, IN

Just Add H2O
South Bend, IN [Michiana Divers]

Altek Sports West Michigan Adaptive Diving
Zeeland, MI


Ice Safety

Ice Thickness Considerations

Ice Diving is not just another “dive”. It’s a classic “You do not know what you do not know”. If you are serious in learning to ice dive, it’s highly recommended that you do your research on what is really required to be an ice diver.

It is suggested that you should read through the training syllabus of nationally known sport diving organizations, such as PADI, NAUI, CMAS, SDI, or TDI who teach ice diving.

If you have not read and compared the requirements for ice diving, how do you have a clue of the training you should be obtaining?

If you are ever considering “working” under the ice, you should have been reading up on what training and support requirements must be met for being a Public Safety Diver.

If you are considering diving under the ice, being prepared is not just a “Boy Scout” motto, it’s the only way to stay alive.

At a minimum check out these sources as required reading:

Number one article:

 http://archive.rubicon-foundation.org/4239  and copy then read AAUS_ColdwaterDiving.pdf
The following are informative support information but are by no means inclusive:



The NOAA Diving Manual: Diving for Science and Technology – Chapter 10

Reminder: Have you ever thought on how you would respond to an emergency?

 When in doubt, DON’T – Be safe out there!

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