DeKALB – Boy Scouts from Troop 33, chartered by First Lutheran Church in DeKalb, recently went underwater to earn the scuba diving merit badge. Scuba diving requires an extensive program of classroom instruction, in-water pool experiences and open water scuba diving.
Scouts learned about specific equipment, regulations, safety procedures, first aid, underwater skills, techniques and dive planning.
They learned to determine no-decompression limits for single and repetitive dives, dive tables, planning and executing a dive, underwater communications, diver assistance, buddy system techniques, underwater navigation, logbook, regulations and protocols.
Scouts demonstrated their skills during open water dives at Haig Quarry, a former limestone mine site near Kankakee. The quarry offered underwater features such as training platforms, stone crusher, sunken boat, dump truck, tunnel, amphibious vehicle and artifacts for underwater archaeology.
Scouts saw a large population of sunfish, bluegill, crappie, bass, perch, catfish, plus northern pike and paddlefish. It made for exciting and interesting dives.
Kurt Clifton of Clifton Diving Ventures in Sycamore served as instructor for the Scouts. Each Scout was individually tested to demonstrate his diving skills and knowledge.
Scouts earned Scuba Diving merit badges and also Open Water Diver Certification through NAUI, National Association of Underwater Instructors.
Diving was an exciting program that challenged Scouts’ abilities, developed new skills and tested their teamwork, all while providing a unique and exciting new scouting adventure.