Easter was spent in sunny Smögen, the weekend after it was our turn to take care of some West Coast residents in our favorite mine – the Adventure Mine. It seems I'm not the only one who loves the contrasts in life. Well in one way they opposite of each other, but both places offer world-class diving. This company had chosen the package where they get to start the diving weekend by going the adventure tour. It is a good choice in many ways, but above all everyone gets a much better insight into what the mine looks like. In addition, they get a completely different insight into both mines and mining thanks to our guidance during our way down to the mine.
Mining Saturday with diving and photo
It's spring in the air even in Tuna Hästberg when we arrive there Saturday morning. But spring in the air is two different things if you compare the West Coast with Dalarna. Me and Marcin unpack the car into the wagon while Jimmy prepares the group with the equipment required to climb the adventure tour down into the mine.
Me and Jimmy will guide the adventure tour while Marcin, Jonas and Jimmy (the dive managers) take the stairs down and prepare everything they can for the first dive. That's, unpack everything from the carriage and on the trolley that will take the gadgets away to the "indyhall". The group is fast but since we were a little bit late, we do not take any major debauchery in the tour, but some beautiful precipitates and mining poo they must still see. You don't want to miss that.
Once in the mine, toilets are offered to those who are needed and a coffee before we make our way to the "indyhall" for the first dive of the weekend. It turns out that they are not only quick to climb via ferrata, but they are also really quick to change into diving gadgets. 2 of us are Stockholmers, one has lived there for 20 years and I, well I live in next door to Stockholm, according to them. At least we're happy not to be the ones waiting for everyone else. In the water we divide into two groups where Marcin and I are in charge of one group and team JJ (with each JJ CCR in addition) guide group two.
The diving is, as always, fantastic. I'm the last person of a band of lights in crystal clear water. Buoyancy and balance is perfect and with our pace, I am just so relaxed. This is really relaxation. I now feel such a development I have made since we brought up diving together again and Marcin’s words that when you are perfectly leaded and balanced, it should feel like you can just lie still in the water without going up or down. I know I've heard similar words before, but it's only now that I really, really feel that way... Marcin dive his usual tour, and we look at the dynamite box, staircase and old bridge and other things that remain. I just want to explain to them what they're seeing. But I think they appreciate the dive as it is. After 47 minutes in the mine's water, we break the surface. I can promise you that I really have to go to the toilet, getting rid of dry suit and all undergarment just feels so hard. But, for some reason, it often passes a little once you're up and getting the dive stuff off.
After the dive they are just as quick and soon everyone is sitting and having lunch. I will skip the dive after lunch, from the diving platform. I'll save myself until the next day when we'll also dive there, and takes the opportunity to take a photo shoot. Instead, I take Greta's photographer and friend on a photo tour and show him the cute little mining cart and when I'm going to take him to the old coffee room and the workplace, we hear it glistening loudly from the ice resort. I tell him we just have to go and see what it looks like when the ice resort is drained of water. He becomes completely excited and begins photographing the waterfall formed in the middle of the icefall. Really cool sight, both the icefall and the photographer doing everything for the perfect picture. We don't have time for more than a very quick visit to the coffee room with the workplace outside before we go back to the others, but he seems very satisfied anyway and filled with probably thousands of new photo ideas. When everyone's ready and changed, we'll get the 396 steps out of the mine. Most of us go to the village cottage (old school) where we spend the night.
Sunday and I feel a little tender in the body. But nothing little, or yes, a lot of coffee can do anything about. Today we are just doing one dive before the west coasters go all the way home. Hmm yes, soon me and Marcin are getting so far home in the mine, but I can promise frequent visits anyway in the area. Today they are supposed to dive a little more freely as they have already done well and already dived at this place.
We are guiding them around our usual tour and then we leave them right by the deco bar in the open water and make our own little detour. Marcin takes me to the house (not the hanging house) and we do the circuit there. When we leave the illuminated part and I understand that we have made it away from the open parts, it just feels so fun, the thought in my head "yes, we are back" and I am still just as calm as I have been all weekend in the water. It's now that I realize how I've fought in the past, or yes fighting might be a big word in this context, but I've probably had to focus on things that have taken energy that I don't have to do anymore. It's me, Marcin and the mine. The fact that he shines the video light right in my face does not bother me at all, I just pose more patiently than ever. With new mittens under my dry gloves, I don't freeze at all. I'm not peckish and I'm not hungry. I'm just enjoying it. The circuit is short and soon we will be back with the others at the deco bar. Marcin takes a few more pictures before we finally get up. Or, I get up, Marcin stops and photographs the others.
This dive I’m going to live on for a long time and now I just longing for more the next mine dive. I can't wait for the summer and then I'll practice more diving with 12s-tanks instead of my 7s, not because I've been running out of gas in the tanks during our recent dives even though they've been a little longer and deeper. But I want to take the opportunity to practice getting more margin in our upcoming mining dives, then summer is perfect to practice such things. I want to to start photography under the surface again as well.
Now there are diving awaiting in Vagnhärad, Smögen and Lysekil. Then we'll see what I can do or if the focus will be on moving boxes and cleaning for a few weeks.