Blackwater Diving: Unveiling the Mysteries of the Abyss

Blackwater Diving: Unveiling the Mysteries of the Abyss

What if someone told you that they could show you things no human has ever seen or imagined. A portal to a different dimension—one where bioluminescent wonders come alive. Would you go?


What is Blackwater Diving?

Blackwater diving is an extraordinary adventure that takes you into the depths of the ocean at night and you never know what you're going to see. Unlike traditional diving which explores reefs or wrecks, blackwater diving plunges you into the open water column where darkness envelops everything except for the bioluminescent organisms that call this part of the ocean home.


Diel Vertical Migration

Blackwater divers have the opportunity to witness the rare and usually unseen subjects that migrate vertically at night to feed near the surface. And while it's in open ocean, divers are generally at recreational depths, less than 100 feet. Divers hover in the water with powerful lights to attract the planktons and the predators they attract. Watch as jellyfish pulse with internal light shows, tiny larval fish exhibit their transparent forms, and cephalopods like squids change colors and patterns right before your eyes.



Safety and Rewards

The experience can be both exhilarating and serene as you drift in near silence among animals that most people will never see outside of a documentary or research footage. Each dive promises new discoveries since many species encountered during blackwater dives are not yet classified by science due to their elusive nature.

Safety is paramount in such an unpredictable environment. Divers must be experienced and accompanied by professionals who know how to navigate these waters.

"When drifting in the open ocean at night, safety is everything. My Perdix 2 is an integral piece of gear that i would never consider diving without." Mike Bartick

The rewards can be immense for those who undertake this journey: witnessing firsthand the incredible diversity of life hidden beneath the waves at night—a true testament to nature’s wonders beyond our usual reach.

So, if you’re ready to plunge into the abyss and dance with bioluminescent beings, blackwater diving awaits.



All photos courtesy of Mike Bartick
Mike is a highly published, award-winning photographer, writer, international speaker, and Photo pro at Crystal Blue Resort, Anilao, Philippines. He is passionate about connecting people with marine life through photos and video. His love for critters has led him across the globe, landing him in Anilao more than a decade ago where he conducts a variety of different workshops each year.
He has pioneered blackwater diving in Anilao and other locations globally and is a dedicated dive professional who guides and consults on wildlife projects, scuba gear, camera gear, and lighting equipment.
At the end of the day, Mike considers himself just a guy with a camera that is lucky enough to do what he loves.

"Do it for the love, Not the likes"