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Clew In 07-12-2008 08:41 AM

Cool 3-d Link:

Clew In

ricki 07-12-2008 09:22 AM

Thanks for putting this up Clew In. A small section of this well put together dynamic VR Panorama appears above. You need to click the link to Beamer Studios to get the full impact. These guys shoot and assemble these images for clients. Nice work. A bunch of their images including the complete version of the small piece of the 360 degree panorama shown above appear at:

Do you know anything about the riding area in the NW where the image was photographed? Looks like pretty dramatic scenery.


Originally Posted by Clew In (Post 34688)

Clew In 07-12-2008 09:49 AM


No. I just saw it on a website and I though it was cool.

This picture will not cross the safety boundry and get me in trouble.

Clew In

TBKA 07-12-2008 11:58 AM

H ere's their association, seems to be doing some good up there.

ricki 07-13-2008 08:50 PM

Some divers consider getting into Cave Diving at one time or another. Having caves close by is a plus as is a substantial amount of training, skill development, gear and a good partners to have at it with. As the light is artificial and at times you can have astoundingly clear water, you can also capture some unique photos.
Wes Skilles shot this wallpaper image of Diepolder Cave near Brooksville, FL above Tampa for National Geographic at only 250 ft. I believe he used several divers holding powerful light sources to "paint" the vast surface of this chamber. We talked about doing this at night along wrecks in clear water years back. Still need to do that. Amazing imaging and at depth with a large depth of field. Wes of Karst Productions has been shooting superlative cave images for many years. You can see and acquire some of them on his website.
Here is an great image of a tunnel connected to a cenote in the Yucatan. You can see the fuzzy interface between fresh water on top and salt water below. They have karst or large scale solution features in the Yucatan and in parts of northern Florida. Unlike the micro karst we have in southern Florida, smaller voids in other words. Allson is the photographer, from:
There are saltwater caverns and caves as well. Here's the chimney of a swim through in Eden Rock, Grand Cayman. The water is shallow enough to free dive through quite a few of them. At least when you can see the way out from the entrance. Got a lot more video than stills unfortunately but there is this one. There are extensive tunnels and chimneys that riddle the rampart of Palancar Reef off Cozumel. Start with limestone, add acidic water and sooner or later you should get caves.
Photo by Rick Iossi
There are a lot more salt water caverns than well developed caves in some parts. Coral can fabricate caverns and caves under different influences. Shown above is a shallow cavern spilling forth tarpon along the Turtle Reef mini wall on Grand Cayman. Without air exhaust the tarpon just cruise along with you if you go slow. They will even run up on you and join in at times as you approach. Saw quite a few tarpon in caves and caverns there. They hang out in the dim light during the day and they venture out at night to forage. The enclosed environment of caverns and some caves make me feel mellow, how about you?
Photo by Rick Iossi
Here's a blast from the past as if you couldn't tell from the vintage gear. It's yours truly in 1975 crawling out through the strong flowing current of one of the twin orifices. This was just below the ballroom of Jennie Springs in northwest Florida. Technically, I would have been smarter not to have been where I was, whoops! I believe Tom Mount and Ike Ikehara put a steel grate up blocking the cave system just outside this point a few years later. The reason could be found just past the orifice. I thought a caving team was coming out seeing a light but my dive light had reflected back to me off a marble tombstone for a lost diver. Lots of lost cave divers in the 1960's and particularly 1970's in Florida caves. New activity, few safety systems, limited training and a lot of denial of the possibility of bad things happening. Sort of like kiting a few years back. Good thing we know better today, right?
Photo by Ben Clarke


ricki 07-15-2008 11:30 AM

What's going on down in Aruba, well 3 years ago anyway?
Fisherman's Hut, a picturesque area with a long standing following of windsurfers and kiters in recent years. There are still off hours for kiting during the day in the area of the Huts and south. The water is flat calm with gusty offshore wind. It is an interesting place to learn to kite. No waves to deal with, shallow water and some particularly gusty winds. I am wondering if learning there when you move to more steady winds you might actually be better trained to deal with things? Flat kites have to have helped a lot with managing the gusts for kiters.
Shredding before a wreck. I only went off Fishermans twice while I was there. Near as I can tell the trick, particularly for heavier kiters is to rig as big as you can reasonably manage, use a big board and be real cautious during launch and landing. The lulls while you are out may be pronounced. The larger board will help you continue to plane through lulls while the larger kite will help you eek out more grunt to deal with the holes. Armand is a good guy to hookup with over there for lessons and gear, Oh, if you ride off Fisherman's Hut be sure to pay for the tender pickup service if you get blown offshore. It happens.
Boca Grande off the SE portion of Aruba is an interesting place to ride. You have windward shore winds near onshore to side onshore and a barrier reef to ease the waves somewhat. The problem is it is a fairly small area probably containing a dozen or so kiters. That assuming the tack offshore away from the beach against the wind. You will want a rental car to access areas outside the resort around Fisherman Hut.
Riding off the south end of the bay. I went outside through the narrow channel through the reef several times. The waves can be big outside, 10 ft. or better. It pays to look behind you as you're heading out to memorize shore points for your return. You don't want to come in over the reef in inches of water with large following breaking waves! You may be able to ride in the shallow bay just north of Boca Grande at high tide. Still, there are lots of rocks to strike and at low tide I wouldn't even bother. I was looking at Google Earth, a few other prospects showed up around the island with pluses and minuses for more advanced riders.
A natural rock bridge along the windward side of the island. No end of interesting rock exposures, tormented trees and arid sights across the island.

Aruba is a scenic place with some interesting haunts to visit and ride at. Some are more challenging than others for more advanced riders looking for something different outside Fisherman's Hut. Then there are those ABC Island latitude winds, mighty fine as a rule.

conchxpress 07-15-2008 02:29 PM

Steve L.

Where are the pictures from the WSW Aruba trip? I'd like to see what I missed.


ricki 07-16-2008 08:56 AM

Here's some more from Aruba ...
Checking out Boca Grande off the windward side
As you move further off the beach there are areas of waves to play in. It can get crowded in the bay fairly easily as it is small made more so with frequent onshore winds. If you go outside the reef there are lots of waves and room but few options if you need to come in with broken gear, ouch. See those big waves crashing into the rocks in the distance? That is normally the reality on the windward ironshore of the ABC islands. When you can find viable launches on the windward shore for kiting they are special and few sad to say.
It's real arid in the ABC's and the topsoil blew away long ago. That is if it ever developed in the first place. Windy latitudes.
A look east over Boca Grande
Heading back around to the lee shore at Fisherman's Hut
Somebody once told me these thorny trees were planted by missionaries to compel the natives to wear shoes? Others have said they brought them as fodder for livestock. Oh boy, a nice thorn sandwich? Not sure which I believe less. Sunset off the north end of the island.


ricki 07-16-2008 11:09 PM

Tom Byrne of Adventure Sports Intl. in Miami, FL sent in some great riding shots of him in action, including ...
Going off Hobie Beach
Photo by: Dale "The Destroyer" Baker.
Orbiting off Cape Florida
Photo by Mike Minichiello
Shredding is mighty fine in Stiltsville
Photo by Mike Minichiello
Drilling a nice one skyward
Photo by Mike Minichiello
Doing the upside down hand drag thing in Bimini Sound. Hey Tom, how many points did the Lemon Sharks that hang out in the sound give you for that one?
Photo by Tom Clark

Thanks for sending the great shots in Tom! Looking good out there!

If folks have some shots they'd like to put up for consideration for the Photo Of The Day send 'em in! I like to use unusual photos, ideally in larger formats and higher resolution (raw shots are good).

ricki 07-18-2008 10:33 AM

Been looking into diving lately, how about duck diving?
Uh, no, not that type of DUCK diving. What's all that stuff floating around anyway?
Photographer shimmo23

How about this type?
Photo credit: Roxy
Photographer Sharpy
Photographer Jim Russ
Photographer unknown

So if something big is rolling your way and you can't catch it, don't forget to duck!

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