• By Sea ~ Night / Blackwater Dives

By Sea ~ Night / Blackwater Dives

NEW to YSS Dive Charters! Now offering an exclusive Cold water blackwater diving experience.  Our crew is excited to bring this unique experience to the Hood Canal diving community.

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Blackwater diving is a unique experience not often encountered by most divers. Unlike exploring the night on a reef or rocky shore, blackwater diving is done in the open ocean, where you dive suspended in the water column, in the dark depths far away from the coast. The boat drifts with the current, and floodlights are lowered into the water to attract all the ocean nightlife. Initially, it may seem like there is nothing to see but darkness, but soon enough, all the creatures of the deep start to arrive. Divers swim around the lights or are tethered by a line to stay close to the boat. They use their torches to hunt for the tiny creatures attracted to the floodlights. Underwater photographers also love shooting blackwater dives as they provide striking shots and a unique opportunity to capture images of deep sea creatures that are rarely seen.

Tips for blackwater diving

Blackwater diving requires similar gear and skills as regular night diving, but there are a few things to remember.

  • Buoyancy is critical, especially if you’re taking photographs or plan on swimming around the lights. 
  • Keep track of your bearings at all times. With so few references, it’s easy to become disoriented.
  • You need to be comfortable with being in the water at night and in deep water. If you’re not used to night diving, start on the reefs, and work your way up to blackwater diving.
  • Stay close to the lights if you’re not tethered to the boat so you don’t drift away in the current.

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