Spring Lake Dive Authorization Course (DAC)
(Formerly the Diving for Science Authorization Course)

March 28, 2015

Are you tired of scuba diving in murky water?  Spring Lake at the headwaters of the San Marcos River offers some of the finest freshwater scuba diving in Texas. Spring-fed water from the Edwards Aquifer provides excellent visibility and keeps the temperature at approximately 72 degrees year-round. The aquatic plants and animals are also very compelling.springlake

SCUBA diving in Spring Lake, for any reason, is complicated due to the delicate nature of the environment. Declared a "Critical Habitat" in 1980, Spring Lake is home to eight federally listed species and is governed by the rules and regulations of the Endangered Species Act of 1973. In addition, Spring Lake is registered as an Archaeological site and is protected by the Antiquities Code of Texas. Consequently there are limits
to recreational diving in Spring Lake.

The Spring Lake Dive Authorization Course is designed to sensitize divers to the unique environment of Spring Lake and the safety protocols and procedures in place to ensure protection of the environment, cultural resources and diver safety. Upon successful completion of this course, divers are authorized to come back and dive as volunteer divers for the Meadows Center for Water and the Environment and be involved in one of the largest habitat restoration projects in the country.

The Diving Rebels Scuba Club has secured March 28, 2015 as an opportunity for Club Members to attend this class. The price is $230 per student and does not include transportation, meals or lodging.  To participate in the date set for the Diving Rebels Scuba Club, a sign-up sheet will be available at the November Meeting.  Your spot can be retained with a $150 deposit.  The fees for the course are to be paid to the Club so one payment can be made to the Meadows Center.  There are 12 spaces available and dues paid Club Members will have first choice of available spaces.

springlake1The DAC class is divided into two components. The first component involves classroom lecture, where divers will learn about the Edwards Aquifer, endangered species, archaeology and state/federal regulations pertaining to Spring Lake. During the second component of the DAC, divers will don their scuba gear and learn to work in our liquid laboratory (Spring Lake). The focus is on diving techniques to ensure protection of Spring Lake and its related ecosystem. After completing the one day DAC course, volunteers and researchers will be authorized to work in Spring Lake. The program provides countless opportunities year-round for volunteers and researchers to scuba dive in Spring Lake in support of program objectives.

Course Description

  • Course Duration: 1 day, plus time necessary to complete take home modules and assessments (@4 hours).
  • The Spring Lake Dive Authorization Course is divided into 4 take home Academic Modules and assessment quizzes that are to be completed by each student prior to the class start.
  • Students will meet for one full day at Spring Lake where the assessment quizzes will be reviewed, diving skills will be assessed, a tour of the springs will be given and common volunteer tasks will be demonstrated.
  • This course is PASS/FAIL. Students must score at least 70% on each of the assessment quizzes and demonstrate that they are competent divers (good buoyancy control and situational awareness) in order to pass.
  • Requirements for taking the Spring Lake Authorization Course
  • Show proof of a Full Open Water SCUBA Certification through a major Dive Training Agency;
  • Be at least 15 years of age at the time of taking the course;
  • Show proof of a minimum of 20 logged dives beyond their training dives;
  • Students must provide their own equipment including tanks and weights;
  • Pay the Course fee of $230
  • Students must complete and turn in all required paperwork.