Seattle Dive Tours

PADI Master Scuba Diver Rating

  • PADI Dry Suit Diver

PADI Master Scuba Diver Rating

The PADI Master Scuba Diver rating is a path towards perfecting your diving skills. Earning the rating means that you have spent significant time underwater learning and practicing your dive skills in a variety of dive environments. To get the most out of your experience, I always recommend charting a course based on interests that you develop during your PADI Advanced Open Water Diver. These could include photography, fish & marine life, or adventure. Having plan for which courses to take will help you to stay motivated and on track to reach your PADI Master Scuba Diver goal.

Last fall, PADI interviewed Northwest diver and photographer Janna Nichols, who talks about earning the PADI Master Scuba Diver rating while diving in the Pacific Northwest, and what the rating meant to her:

As Janna mentions in the video, she had an interest in being an underwater naturalist that helped her to choose which courses to take in order to complete her PADI Master Scuba Diver rating.

Getting Started

To start working towards the PADI Master Scuba Diver rating, a diver first needs to earn the PADI Advanced Open Water Diver. In this class, divers will try 5 Adventure Dives- Underwater Navigator, Deep Diver, plus 3 elective Adventure Dives. The PADI Advanced Open Water Diver allows divers to receive additional training and explore areas of interest within scuba diving, such as fish identification, photography, or search & recovery diving.

After the PADI Advanced Open Water Diver course is PADI Rescue Diver, where you’ll learn to prevent and manage problems in the water, and become more confident in your skills as a diver. Additional requirements for the PADI Master Scuba Diver rating are a minimum 12 years or older and have 50 logged dives. If you have fallen behind on logging your dives, now is a good to to start by logging them on ScubaEarth.

Next is the fun part, deciding on which 5 speciality courses to take. I recommend that you decide on your main interest(s) and build a course schedule around it. Here are three groups of courses to take based on some common diver interests:

PADI Dry Suit Diver

Divers completing their PADI Dry Suit Diver course

Naturalist Diver
AWARE – Fish Identification
AWARE – Coral Reef Conservation
Peak Performance Buoyancy
Digital Underwater Photography
Underwater Naturalist

Northwest Diver
Night Diver
Deep Diver
Dry Suit Diver
Underwater Navigator
Enriched Air Diver

Adventurer Diver
Underwater Navigator
Search and Recovery Diver
Wreck Diver
Drift Diver
Enriched Air Diver

Course schedules could also be built around interests such as photography; cold water, ice & altitude; or travel. In addition, popular courses such as Enriched Air Diver or Peak Performance Buoyancy can be substituted for another course or even taken as a 6th speciality.

At Seattle Dive Tours, we can put together a complete PADI Master Scuba Diver program for any diver, taking as little as two weeks or several months depending on the diver’s schedule and interests. Ready to start your PADI Master Scuba Diver rating? Call us at (206) 265-0006, or e-mail to get started today!

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Summer Scuba Diving Season Heats Up

Red Octopus

Red octopus by David Sisson

As July closes out this week, our Seattle Dive Tours summer season is in full swing. Visibility has been averaging 30′ or more on most dives and wildlife sightings are plentiful. In addition to our Giant pacific octopus, we are also seeing a related, smaller species, Red octopus (Octopus rubescens).  Not sure how to tell them apart? The Seattle Aquarium has a handy cheat sheet to help. The great visibility also allows us to see more mid-water schooling fish, such as perch and some Rockfish species. Our most abundant marine mammal at the dive sites right now is the Harbor seal. Last week one delighted our divers by swimming on the surface and diving to catch fish throughout the morning. Our California and Stellar sea lions are at their breeding rookeries along the Oregon and Washington coasts, and we expect them to return around mid-August.

Divers continue to arrive from the United States and Canada, and this summer we’ve also had divers visiting and scuba diving with us from Australia, Belgium, Germany, the United Kingdom, Spain, Singapore, and the Netherlands. Most divers have commented on the clarity of the water and bright ambient light from the summer sun. We’ve had several divers request PADI courses, with Dry Suit Diver, Enriched Air Diver (Nitrox) and Advanced Open Water being the most popular. Don’t forget that while we regularly schedule all of our PADI classes monthly, we can also teach any class any day of the week for divers visiting Seattle.

Wolf eel

Wolf eel by David Sisson

Looking ahead, our warm summer should continue through August, then transition to fall in the Pacific Northwest, featuring cool, clear nights and warm, sunny days. Don’t forget to book your dive now to experience the beauty of Pacific Northwest waters for yourself.