18 reasons why you should rent an underwater camera

I recently snorkeled on the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef without an underwater camera: Big mistake!

This reef, the second largest in the world stretches all the way along the east coast of the Yucatan peninsular, embracing Mexico and Belize, but I have nothing but my memories of the huge stingrays and nurse sharks tussling over a conch shell dropped to the bottom from our catamaran. I have only my memories of swimming through a cloud of jagged-toothed jacks, and then turning around to face a wall of half a dozen confused, man-sized sharks, about 2 metres behind me. I have no photos of the hawksbill turtle who hung in the water a mere 6 feet away from me, scrutinising us carefully. Which is a real shame as these would have made stunning photographs, and if I get too many more bumps on my head from public transport with roofs too low to accept my 6’3″ frame then I’m screwed.

Back in 2007 I was lucky enough to snorkel and SCUBA dive on the Great Barrier Reef off of Cairns, Australia. On that occasion we rented an underwater camera from a shop in town. The package included the burning of the images to a CD afterwards, which back then was a great thing as the memory cards for digital compact cameras were far smaller than they are now. It wasn’t that expensive, and the camera and case were well customised for the different lighting you experience underwater – few red wavelengths below 7 feet, for example. Plus I don’t tend to trust waterproof cases for my own property. These are good reasons, I suppose, but they aren’t the reasons the title referred to.

I’ll let the real reasons speak for themselves here:

So there you go, just a few of the hundreds of excellent reasons I could have furnished this post with!

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