Sunday, April 22, 2012


It seems fitting, although quite unexpected, that my post on the fabulous Women of Freediving has gone mildly viral today on Facebook. The post, as you can see on the left, has consistently been the most popular page on my blog and is now making the rounds on Facebook after U.S. Freediver Carla Hanson put it on her page yesterday.

It is fitting, because it was just one year ago this month that freediving took my breath away. When we were in Long Island in the Bahamas, we visited Dean's Blue Hole, an enchanting and mysterious vertical cavern plummeting 660 feet. You can stand in ankle-deep water on shore and peer into the abyss.

When we arrived at Dean's, we saw a white platform floating in the center of the pool peopled by wispy figures in black wetsuits. All I could think was, "that platform is really interfering with my photos." Then the platform erupted in shouts of, "BREATHE, BREATHE, BREATHE"! I was hooked.

I had never heard of freediving. The sport, the setting, the athletes -- the whole scene mesmerized me, resulting in my article in the Sunday New York Times print edition (with a huge assist from my friend and former colleague Jeffrey Marcus).

Now, a year later, I'm interested once again in writing about these remarkable athletes and their curious sport. Even though we're in Florida now, I'm going fishing once more, always from the surface, to see what stories I can find in the abyss.

Photos by Chip Sellarole

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