Happy New Year!

Hello Divers,

Happy 2011! One of our new year's resolutions, is to start a real blog and clean this place up some. Starting today, all new current events and our newsletters will be posted here for your viewing pleasure. We'll slowly get the older stuff moved over, but you can always view it here in the meantime.

We also hope to take you diving even more this year and will soon announce many two day weekend trips to the Gulf Coast. On this blog we will let you know about our bigger trips so you can start making plans to go with us. Just last week, Spencer returned with a group from Grand Cayman. They spent a week diving in the new year on one of our privately chartered LiveAboard vacations. These diving yachts are set up perfect for maximum diving. We have two more of these vessels chartered this year so check your schedule if you want to go. Here are a couple photos from the Cayman trip we just did.

We have been teaching people to dive here at Southern Skin Divers Supply for 58 years now.  We are always promoting diving with our website and this newsletter.  As many of you know, SSDS always has a booth at the Birmingham Sport and Boat Show and this year is no different.  We will be there from Jan 20-23 and if any of you want to help us recruit new divers please give us a call.  We would love to have you there.  Here is a picture of Bill Tant promoting Southern Skin Divers Supply back in 1959. (Bonus point to anyone that can tell us where that photo was taken)
February 18-20, 2011 Manatee, Crystal River, FL Trip
The water is a constant 72 degrees here year round. This means that in the winter it is considerably warmer than the ocean, so there will be a larger congregation of Manatee in this area. We have chosen a holiday weekend to enable kids to participate in this encounter with these giant mammals. This should give us plenty of time to have two long days of snorkeling and diving in Crystal River as well as some of the nearby springs.

March 12-19, 2011 Utila, Honduras Live Aboard
We spent last Spring Break in Utila and had such a good time we are going again. This time we will be on a brand new dive yacht! This will be the newest and most luxurious vessel in their fleet. This year we spent the week diving off of Utila and Roatan. The diving is easy, fish life is abundant and the food is excellent. Annually we offer a trip somewhere the kids can dive during Spring Break. Most dives are 30-60 ft deep so it is perfect for that. This will be a great family trip.

June 4-11, 2011 Bonaire
The Island of Bonaire has perhaps the best shore diving in the Caribbean. The shore dives are clearly marked and with the unlimited diving package that we have, you may dive as frequently as you wish. We also have included 9 boat dives for each diver. Included in this package are oceanfront condo accommodations, truck rental, breakfast daily, unlimited air diving and Nitrox diving if you are Nitrox certified and transfers to and from the airport in Bonaire. Spencer will be running this trip so give us a call at The SCUBA School for more details.

September 17-24, 2011 Fiji
We have privately chartered a 10 passenger dive yacht that is perfectly suited for Fiji and the diving itinerary. All indoor areas are air-conditioned and each of the guest cabins feature en suite facilities. The beautifully appointed salon has ample room for divers to view their photos and videos or to enjoy a movie on the entertainment system. The sundeck features covered and uncovered lounging and is a perfect place to relax with a book during surface intervals.

Fiji dazzles everyone with its bright corals and huge sea fans surrounded by clownfish ornate ghost pipefish and nudibranchs. But it does not stop there, Fiji also comes with schooling pelagics. Make sure you turn from the bright corals and look for barracuda, reef sharks, mantas, tuna and the occasional pilot whale! There is no shortage of marine life large and small in the waters of Fiji.

Continuing Education

Jan 15 9:30 am at The SCUBA School, Underwater Photography
Mark Tant is teaching an Underwater Photo Course here on Saturday.  We still have room but you need to let us know if you are attending. To see some of Mark's most recent photographs, visit his website at marktant.com


  • Your Entry to the Underwater Photography 
  • Your Digital Camera System 
  • Using your Camera System 
  • Taking digital pictures under water
  • Composition of your underwater pictures
  • Editing your digital pictures
Jan 29 9:30 am at The SCUBA School, Enriched Air NITROXHave you ever dreamed of having longer no-decompression limits to take pictures or explore a wreck? Did you ever want to be safer while diving concerning the potential risk of decompression sickness?

Nitrox is the key. Due to the reduced fraction of nitrogen in your breathing gas, your body will have less work and the de saturation times will be reduced.

In your ENRICHED AIR NITROX program you will learn all the necessary rules for planning dives with Nitrox and using Nitrox in a safe way. An important key point in the entire program is analyzing your own tank prior to any Nitrox dive.

Forrest Phillips
Southern Skin Divers Supply
4515 5th Ave South
Birmingham, AL   35222