Stuart Seldon

stuart-seldonMy earliest recollection of breathing underwater was when I was about ten years old. An older cousin had acquired a rusty tank and a two-hose regulator. Neither of us had had any instruction in its use, but when I put the contraption on my back, and my mask on my face (the one with the built-in ping-pong ball snorkels!) and submerged in my parent’s pool, I was hooked. I have no recollection of my parents being home at the time, and my cousin was only five or six years older than I was. It’s a minor miracle that either of us survived that first outing!

Seven years later, I earned my SCUBA certification and made my first trip to Tobermory the following weekend. It was May and it was on this trip that I discovered two important things: Tobermory was the birthplace of cold water and dive-shop staff who tell you that the baggy rental wetsuit will keep you warm, are being less than truthful. None-the-less, the amazing wrecks were spell-binding and it was shortly after that trip, that I bought my first underwater camera with a fraudulently obtained bank loan!

Four years later, I completed a NAUI Instructor certification programme in Tobermory and the following summer, after completing studies in Biological Sciences, I accepted a position as General Manager of Big Tub Lodge which included a very busy dive shop. It was during this time that I came to see that people travelled from all over the continent to dive on some of the most pristine shipwrecks in the world. After a two-year, two-owner stint at the Lodge, I moved to the Bahamas and then Grand Cayman to teach diving, but I always craved the cool, fresh water of Georgian Bay. When I returned to Canada, I immediately began to rent a little place in Tobermory so I could spend as much time there as possible. A few years later, I purchased a place overlooking the harbor where I spend much of the summer to this day.

I continue to take a camera on most dives and enjoy trying to show our wrecks off in the best way possible. While I have never been a “professional” photographer, it gives me great pleasure to be able to show the non-diving world a tiny glimpse of the treasures below the surface of “our” lake.

2014 Forum Talk

The pristine waters surrounding Tobermory have attracted divers since the 1950’s, and to this day, Tobermory remains one of the best freshwater diving areas in the world. Stuart first dove in Tobermory in 1974, shortly after becoming certified. He immediately fell in love with the diving, the town and the people of the northern Bruce Peninsula. His first “real” job following completion of studies in Freshwater Biology, was managing a dive operation in Tobermory. After leaving town to travel for a couple of years, he returned to Tobermory as a frequent visitor and then a homeowner. In the following 30 years or so, he has logged thousands of dives in the area, frequently with camera in tow…

In this light-hearted presentation, Stuart discusses some of the earliest diving “characters” in the area and the history of the discovery of some of the area’s most-loved wrecks. The presentation will be illustrated with recent photographs of many of Tobermory’s most popular dive sites!

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