The trick is that you have to go down to about 127′ level to look for the exit hole. There is another hole much deeper but that’s beyond my diving ability. And of course it’s night so you can’t see anything but what is in the light from the flashlight in your hand. I had rented a pretty good halogen flashlight which did not implode on me. I was able to find the exit hole. It was not claustrophobic as you would expect. There was so much to see on the walls that it kept you busy. The wall itself did not seem more than a foot thick. I swam through the 5′ opening and found myself on the side of a cliff. To my left was a steep sloping cliff wall. To my right was what might as well have been a bottom-less pit.
I followed Raul as we proceded along the cliff face. We were still at the 120′ level but without any horizontal surfaces, it was hard to stay at one depth. I soon realized that I had drifted down to 130′. I paniced a little when I started to notice my lips tingling. It wasn’t unpleasant at all. The panic came because I realized that it was nitrogen narcosis setting in. I had gone too deep, too long. Raul had gone on without me and though I could see his light, he was not looking for me. I decided not to die just then and swam up a bit. My training kicked in and I remembered not to rocket to the surface — that would be bad. I made a gradual accent to about 90′, now hovering above my buddy by 30′ or so. The entire narc episode was only 7 minutes but it left quite an impression.
I eventually got back up to the 60′ level where there was a shelf. I could see other lights off in the distance of those who had not ventured all the way down the hole. Despite the darkness, visibility was quite extrodinary. It was so completely different from my Lake Travis night dive years before.
I swam along the shelf and found a huge boulder the size of a VW Beetle perched precariously as if its trunk was straight up in the air. Around on one side and underneath, I saw a huge lion fish. I had seen them in stores an knew them to be poisonous as well as beautiful. It’s hard to judge the scale but this guy had to be 18″ long including all his plumage. He just sat there under the boulder and watched me pass.
Upon returning to the dive shop I looked for a t-shirt. I bought one that states “I Dove the Blue Hole”. Tammy later asked my why my shirt read “I Dove…” with Dove pronounced like the bird. Not the best choice for t-shirt.
I don’t have any pictures because it was at night and the camera rental was so pricy. It didn’t make sense to rent the camera for just one dive.