"I Dive Like a Girl, Try To Keep Up!" Celebrating Women's Dive Day in the Eelgrass of Puget Sound

Did you know that today, July 15th, 2017, is the third annual PADI Women's Dive Day?

Only about a third of certified scuba divers are women. Today I joined a welcoming and adventurous group of female divers from Seattle Scuba Schools to dive the Junkpile, a smattering of sunken debris off Alki Beach in West Seattle.

I came to the event alone, so I was paired with Hannah as my dive buddy. Diving is a great way to make friends, even though there's not much chance for conversation underwater...

These photos are to show my underwater-photography learning curve. I figured out how to take stills from a GoPro video, yay!

And so you can admire the beauty of neoprene-hood cheeks, of course.

It was my first chance to use my new GoPro, a Hero 2 I bought on Craig's List. Here's a short video of our dive through the eelgrass bed. (Sorry, no critter close-ups. My battery died before I found the sea stars.)

I adore diving in Puget Sound, even though the cold water requires bulky gear (a two-piece, 14 mm wetsuit plus boots, gloves and hood), and the green algae limits visibility to ten feet. What I love is getting to know this underwater ecosystem right next to my home, the city of Seattle.

We saw lots of flounder, a ratfish, a Dungeness crab, a striped sea jelly, and the siphon of an enormous clam. Best of all, we saw sea stars! A Leather Star, two Sunflower Stars, a Giant Pink Star (think Patrick from Spongebob), a Sunstar, and an orange star that could have been Ochre or Mottled.

This icing really took the cake.

After the dive, we were treated to a delicious summer barbecue hosted by Cathy from Seattle Scuba Schools. Now I have to go put away all my gear that's drying in the sun!

Happy, salty, hungry divers.