One of the diving community great weaknesses is not how Open Water is taught, but how it is promoted. Many dive centres are so focused on bringing new and entry level divers into the community they forget about the continuing education and higher levels and further education courses. This is especially common in Resort areas, holiday and vacation destinations.
While the diving community like all “Ecosystems” needs new entry level divers and beginners. Those beginners often don’t stay in diving. After completing their basic open water move on to another hobby. There are thoughts that part of the reason for this is the attitude of instructors or just modern life in general or the expense of entry into Scuba.
It is obvious that for many the challenge of completing an entry level Open Water course is often a life changing, dream come true. To be in amongst the fishes and watching all the beautiful colours of a coral reef.
I have always said the most incredible gadget for me would be the ability to scuba dive and have Sir David Attenborough narrate the animal behaviour as you experience and see it live underwater. Not being able to ensure Sir David, possibly the most important Knight of the Realm, was there to accompany me personally on all my dives…meant I had to get into underwater photography instead.
Almost all agencies have an entry level Open Water course that is a confined session, four open water dives and a certification that qualifies you to dive to 18m/60ft. This is the backbone of the entry level course across the world. Regardless of how it is taught, badly, well, eight to a class or like us a maximum of four to a class.
The Open Water Diver course is often sold and promoted as a stand alone course. “All you will ever need” to go Scuba diving. It is for the vast majority the perfect entry level course. Especially if taught diligently, neutrally buoyant and working beyond minimum standards.
We believe that the minimum goal of any diver. Be that a diver that dives one or two weeks of the year on vacation or the weekend warrior diving as often as possible and at every opportunity. Everyone should be aiming to get to a minimum of Rescue Diver with some specialties. The time frame with which you do this is done to time, money and your bucket list of dives.
We at Cortez Expeditions are always encouraging our customers to expand their experiences in diving and diving education. It is much like driving a car, no one starts driving on the Motorway or Freeway but sooner or later you have to get some experience.
We can provide a free consultation in person or over the phone. We can call you and discuss the features and benefits of what your next course should be. Some courses like advanced open water & Rescue diver are common sense. Many of you may not have considered Enriched air or equipment specialty. There are many that enlighten you with out even getting wet.
Our largest and most successful Instructor development course to date. Our Course director and instructor trainer has been teaching IDCs for 18 years. We are proud to say Luke has never had a failure on the PADI Instructor exams.
Philosophy - Our philosophy is simple: “Love the Ocean, Love All”
We consider ourselves to be ambassadors for the Ocean and the Natural World. Our expeditions and experiences are designed to give you the best encounters and interactions with the Natural World. Through these encounters we believe that individuals learn to appreciate, love, care, cherish, nourish, and most importantly, conserve the World’s environment and ecology.
We strive to provide a service that is second to none. At the same time, we make our practices environmentally sustainable to ensure future generations enjoy the beauty of the ocean and Natural World.
We understand that many dive centres and training facilities provide the minimum number of days required by the certification agency to complete a course. We don’t believe in doing the bare minimum. While most people can complete and Open Water course in 4 days, we want to accommodate all learning styles and recognise that some may need or want more than the minimum requirement to complete their course. We quote for each individual course based on student input and our expertise to ensure that you leave well trained at your new level of certification as well as satisfied that your training was worth the price you paid.
Training with Cortez Expeditions is scheduled to the students needs with very small classes and individual customer service. We do not offer bulk or volume training but individual specialised training that makes our students succeed and excel. We choose quality over quantity to make you succeed.
Recreational diving and Technical diving, Photo Workshops, Professional Training and CCR Rebreather diving and CCR Rebreather diver instruction. CCR Rebreather support with tank rental, high pressure oxygen fills and C02 absorbent, dive equipment and CCR Rebreather sales, Technical diving courses including Nitrox, Trimix and Instructor level training. We do it all.
We are the only PADI 5 Star Instructor Development Center, DAN Instructor Center, TDI and IANTD Dive Center on the west coast of Mexico.
Cortez Expeditions is open year round offering diver support from dive gear rentals with a variety of tank sizes for rent, Sidemount gear rental and sales, CCR Rebreather support, rental and Apeks, Fourth Element dive gear for sale.
We believe there is a holy trinity in Diver education......
Have you ever rented the most basic car from a car rental service? Did it feel safe? Lets face it, there is nothing wrong with your average rental car, but not after everyone has driven them and abused them all summer.
Rental dive gear is the same. While all dive gear is fail safe and well made, most dive school rental gear is based on one thing being as cheap as possible.
Your first experience in scuba should be with the best equipment available. That is why we choose Apeks equipment. Think of it as renting a Land Rover or Toyota Land Cruiser…Tough and reliable! The equipment you use, we use. We use the equipment for diving everyday and for deep diving in over 100m/330ft.
We use environmentally sealed regulators that are serviced every 6 months, Gauges in both Imperial and Metric system. Plus weight integrated modern buoyancy control devices. We are virtually unique in the dive industry with this concept.
Diving equipment is about comfort and fit. Although we can supply you with mask, fins and suit, you should really have your own. We have found over the years that using your own mask and fins, specifically tried on & tested prior to class to ensure comfort and fit. Will make your whole experience underwater much better.
The same applies for a wetsuit. While we understand purchasing a wetsuit and other equipment might be cost prohibitive when first learning to dive, but again we come back to the issues of fit and comfort. We have access to rental suits, but strongly suggest you buy your own. There is a rumour in diving that divers pee in their wetsuits. If this is true, then do you really want a rental suit?
We are sticking to our promise and keeping our blogs sporadic! It seems like a eon ago that I last updated you all in August. So much has happened since….Lets start by Wishing Everyone a Happy Holiday Season! We hope 2017 brings joy and love to everyone and of course lots of diving adventures
Helen & Steve on Honeymoon
In September we welcomed our good friend Steve Backshall and his wife Helen Glover to Baja Sur. Steve and Luke have a long friendship based on Squid, deadly squid to be precise. Back in 2009 Luke was part of the BAFTA winning BBC show Deadly 60 and helped create video like you see below.
Steve decided that Baja was the best place to bring his new wife for their Honeymoon and asked if Afelandra would be Helen´s certifying instructor for her PADI Open Water Course. Helen successfully completed her PADI Open Water Course and did so with flying colours!
Manta Night Dive
We also took Steve and Helen on the famous manta night dive. Actually we snorkeled and Steve recorded this message for the Manta Trust. You can learn more about the Manta Trusts incredible work here
Staying with the subject of Mantas… we have been asked to lend our infrastructure to a research project with Mantas. We are going to be providing boats and logistic support to the most cutting edge research for these animals. Exciting times in 2017, we will let you know more in 2017.
PADI WOMEN´S DIVE DAY
In July 2017, more than 700 events in 77 countries will take place at PADI Dive Centers for the third annual PADI Womens Dive Day. Men and women from Michigan to the Maldives, Thailand to Turkey (and everywhere in between) joined an event designed to grow the dive community and bring more people into the sport. New and expert divers come together, gearing up for everything from high tea on the high seas to shark dives and underwater cleanups. We are proud to have been the dive center choosen to help produce and acquire all that footage to promote this event!
We had the pleasure of attending the DEMA Show in Las Vegas and are very proud to announce that Afelandra has been awarded a "PADI Ambassadiver" Award.
PADI Ambassadiver Program is an amazing idea bringing together Ambassadors representing Positive change and looking to the future of diving. It is an honor to know some of the recipients today and call them friends. I have to admit to shedding a tear as one recipient was our very own Afelandra Gonzalez. WELL DONE AFE!!!!!
Afe is photographed with Andrea Miller, who helped create one of the first Marine Parks in Barbados and continues to defend the oceans and teach ocean awareness. The awards were presented by Drew Richardson, President of PADI.
We own a boat! A custom built dive boat! Our new boat Monkey Business is ready for business and you can learn more about our private charters here...
The Blog from the Sea of Cortez...
These blogs are written by Luke and Afelandra...