Making a Difference Underwater

My inspiration to explore the ocean came at a young age. When I was six years old, my dad brought home a National Geographic magazine with a free record of whale songs. I remember listening to it for the first time, and it blew my mind, I think the ocean has been a place of wonder for me ever since.

Now, years down the road, I specialize in Marine Science and coral restoration. I love this because I enjoy discovering how creatures interact with each other, how everything in an environment fits together, and exploring that balance. I love sharing that with other people.

My favorite dive site has to be Alcyone in Cocos Island, Costa Rica. It’s a long trip but worth it. Here, the schools of hammerheads take my breath away. It is one of those dives that you don’t want to come up from.

With the nature of being a dive instructor, you get A LOT of different dive buddies! But for a fun dive, my favorite dive buddy is Georgia King, my co-founder at Marine Conservation Costa Rica. We have been diving together for years, and hardly even need signals to communicate. We dive at the same speed; we can make a tank last, and I never have to worry or look for her underwater. It’s fun!

My favorite piece of equipment would be my mask and my regulator. Both are fundamental pieces of equipment. Having your mask or regulator that works well for you makes a HUGE difference to your dive experience. I’ve had my current mask for YEARS and absolutely adore it; I just got a new regulator and Aqualung CORE; it breathes like a dream.

My dive watch is also a super important piece of equipment. Looking at sea creatures, you could completely lose track of time, having a computer or dive watch keeps you on track and safe. Also, I’m often doing lots of different jobs underwater, so it‘s useful to schedule activities. For my ideal watch, I’m all about ease of use, easy to read, to plan dives, and change settings.

Which would be the essential features? – The ability to turn off or modify ascent rate alarms, my current computer is continuously beeping at me. I am unable to turn off the ascent rate alarms, and it’s susceptible. It goes off in surge! And in the Pacific, a surge is pretty constant.

So far, I think starting Marine Conservation Costa Rica is one of my proudest moments. We’ve been working on lots of conservation projects for many years. Still, now we can really focus on creating positive change. It makes me so happy to be able to run the coral restoration project.

I am not entirely sure what will happen next, I will keep evolving and growing MCCR, to educate and promote marine conservation both locally and hopefully on a national level.

(Katharine Evans is a SCUBA Instructor and the co-founder of Marine Conservation Costa Rica.)